“The Face” is a new modeling show on the Oxygen network that tries to find, well, the new face of modeling. I don’t pay much attention to the show but it comes on after Bad Girls Club (which I love!) and so I’ve seen snippets of it from time to time. What happened on this week’s episode has everyone up in arms. The girl pictured above is a model on the show named Devyn. During a deliberation with guest judge Wendy Williams, Devyn was asked if it is hard to be a black girl model and Devyn’s response shocked all of the judges. Devyn responded that she does not see herself as a black girl model because she is fair skinned with an “international” look. World famous supermodel judge Naomi Campbell said in an outrage that Devyn is black and that it’s a disgrace for her to claim otherwise.
Devyn’s comment’s on the show bring up a lot of sentiments of women of color and the modeling world. Most modeling campaigns feature either fair skinned white women and if there are black models they are extremely light skinned. Go on to your favorite clothing website and look at the different models; How many are black? Hispanic? Asian? It is no secret that the fashion industry is incredibly and blatantly racist. Is it a surprise that Devyn chooses not to identify with a race that is continuously ignored? Even though Devyn does not identify herself as a black girl model, others will and that is a problem that she will undoubtedly face during her career. Perhaps Devyn should have a sit down with Naomi Campbell who made a living and a name as a dark skinned black model.
What do you all think? Is the problem with Devyn’s comments or the fashion industry that creates the racism? Comment below what you think!
Teenagers do not care about daily news and current events. It is a simple fact evident in not only in statistics concerning the issue but also in the major gap between teenagers and current events. As a college student I can see firsthand how disenfranchised we students can be about the things that are happening in our world. I would be a hypocrite if I did not admit that I am at times a part of the generational system that ignores national and international events, no matter how important. I would just like to be apart of a generation that is not clueless of where certain countries are on the map or who the speaker of the house is. Everyone should have at least a general knowledge of the world in which they live in no matter their age. Being knowledgeable in daily news events is not a detriment to anyone. There exists an empathy gap between teenagers and the issues of the world surrounding them. They have no interest in the media due to the fact that they are not directly affected by most national and international issues. Ultimately, I argue that this “empathy gap” that exists in our generation today can be attributed to factors such as the rise of social media and reluctance to hard hitting stories about topics such as the war.
Defining the Empathy Gap
I will explain what the empathy gap and how it relates to young teenagers but also in part relates to us as Americans in a country where we do not have to deal with war and bombings in our backyards.
I will quote author Teju Cole on his definition of the empathy gap and what he does to increase awareness of international events even though they may not affect Americans directly
Teenagers and the Media
Rapid paced social media provides an opportunity to “customize” exactly what type of information they consume daily. Whether it be Facebook or Twitter, the invention of the customiz-able dashboard has allowed us to ignore the more important although at times less interesting news stories
– Addition of statistics about age groups and there involvement in the media
What to do now
-There should be a nationwide implementation of education that heavily infuses current events into the curriculum of all schools. This should be done in a way that has a lasting impact on teenagers and not just an assignment they can hand in; there should be a change in how they view news events.
– Those who will argue that it is not the fault of teenagers that they are not involved in today’s current events
– Education does not adeptly prepare students to become interested in the media
– Youth feel that if they cannot change this world than there is no point in becoming interested in its issues (Apathy)