Why hating celebrities isn’t okay

It’s easy to do and easy to justify.

Celebrities, after all, put themselves in the public space. Therefore, they open themselves up to comment on everything related to them: their looks, their weight, their personal lives, their professional decisions. They must know when they sign up for that movie, that TV pilot, that modeling gig that they are also signing up for paparazzi stalking and endless speculation on FB, Twitter, and gossip rags. Right?

As Erin Tatum at Everyday Feminism asks, “does your status as a public figure obligate you to endure and even invite ridicule from not only one, but millions?” Tatum notes that she “behaved with the assumption that because she [here, Kristen Stewart] made herself available to public space, she became public property. And that’s just not how humanity should operate.”

We can stop objectifying celebrities. And in doing so, we are reminding ourselves that others’ bodies are not simply for our consumption. If we want others to respect our individuality and our right to be the sole owners of our own bodies and our own stories, we need to learn to respect others the same way.

So take a moment to read Tatum’s article, and then think twice the next time you’re tempted to bash a celebrity on the basis of what you think you know about him or her. Put down the tabloid in the Target aisle. Stop policing the bodies and activities of celebrities, especially other women (ladies, I’m looking at us). We all deserve better.

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