Inside Tabloid Corruption
Laura Heming | Crown Staff
The odds have not favoured the side of humanity and common decency these past few weeks for Hunger Games starlet, Jennifer Lawrence. Lawrence broke the silence in Vanity Fair regarding the outbreak of stolen nude photos that polluted online websites.
"It's my body, and it should be my choice, and the fact that it is not my choice is absolutely disgusting. I can’t believe that we even live in that kind of world,” She was reported as saying by the CBC.
Always slow to speak and quick to portray herself with dignity, Miss Lawrence has rendered a deep wound that was caused by this sex crime (or, as the media refers to it, this “scandal”).
The question that we should be asking after hearing something like this is “what is happening to our world when a mass portion of humanity starts consuming someone else’s body like a product?”
Tabloids and celebrity gossip sites alike have long had the power and ability to destroy the dignity of people in the spotlight, and it has become normalized. The sad thing is that we indulge in it. We allow ourselves to delight in the misfortunes of celebrities because they become to us “the untouchables.” The Hollywood mentality has become that which says, “They are already famous, so why does it matter if they are getting attention through it anyway?”
The fact that there are people whose careers are propelled by the ups and downs of someone else’s life is quite a tragedy. Regardless of whether what a celebrity does is morally right or morally wrong, it is no one’s right to breach privacy rights, as well as distribute the findings publically. There is a deep corruption in finding pleasure, gaining money, or finding life purpose in spreading gossip and taking away the dignity of another human being.
The world is not a place that has everything together — that is known more clearly now than ever. It has become a place where a young woman’s privacy can be completely violated, and she can still be blamed for it. She can be responsible for sex crimes against herself because she was “dressing too scandalously”, or had “risqué photos unlocked on her computer.”
The real “scandal” is the fact that it has become accepted in society that we can, for our entertainment, read about the heartbreaks and misfortunes of people in Hollywood before we pay for the groceries to feed our families. It is unfortunate that there are people who are real, vulnerable and fragile, and their fame is taken advantage of. Sexual exploitation is not just sex trafficking. It has become easier to excuse sexual exploitation when it is in the media because we feel entitled to see into the lives and bodies of celebrities. We, however, have some sort of power: a power to look away at the grocery store checkout line, to educate ourselves on real news, not news that embarrasses and humiliates.
Humiliation is not entertainment. Exploitation is something to fight, not to indulge in. What will it take for us to learn?