Bad boys are prevalent in the entertainment industry. A male celebrity in a club, surrounded by multiple women, high and downing shots? Pretty normal to most. But a female celebrity in the same situation? She’d be bashed like there was no tomorrow.
Let’s look at the way the public been talking about Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber. In the last year, Justin’s been photographed using drugs, peeing in restaurant buckets, partying, and spitting at people. Sure, Justin’s gotten some flack for his actions, but people have been relatively forgiving towards him. They say that though Justin’s not making the wisest decisions, he’s just being a kid. It’s hard to grow up in the spotlight so we should just let him be. He’ll probably grow out of it. Miley, on the other hand? She’s been making headlines for her controversial VMA performance, her nudity in the “Wrecking Ball” music video, and her drug use. And boy, has she been criticized. People are bashing Miley for being trashy and a terrible role model, and Sinead O’Connor warned Miley not to prostitute herself. Though Miley and Justin are both young and making mistakes, there is obviously much more negativity and judgement in Miley’s criticism than in Justin’s. The contrasting reactions reflect what we have been saying about the increased tendency of women to be looked at and judged. There are artists, both male and female, who have made disrespectful performances and trashy music videos, yet it’s the females who always get the backlash. Women have the burden of being meticulous with their actions and appearances because they are objects and they are scrutinized.
Speaking of scrutiny, females in the entertainment industry are under much more pressure to be good role models. Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez, two relatively good celebrity role models, stated in interviews that they are mindful of making good decisions because they know young fans are following their lead. When have we ever heard male celebrities say that? Why are female celebrities the ones burdened with the responsibility? Being a role model entails increased judgement. They didn’t sign up for that. Just like women didn’t sign up to be constantly watched and critiqued.