If you have fair skin and you look good, then half the battle is already won. This is one fact of our society that no one seems to talk about but is implicitly applicable in nearly every facet of our lives.
This is very well depicted in the advertising World where a fair and lovely girl/guy is able to gather all the applause for her/his excellent speech and is received very well by her/his boss, solely because she happens to be using fair and lovely cream which claims that it has the ability of making a person fair and thereby altering the entire perspective of people towards that person.
Yesterday, I happened to see this advertisement of Everyouth cream, wherein a girl receives a message that she needs to meet someone for a business deal in just 5 minutes time. Not having the time to go to a beauty parlour, she insted realizes that she has what others don’t have and that is the cream which would make her reach the level of prettiness required to impress the other party in order to clinch the deal.
And guess what! The meeting comes to its culmination with the pretty lady grabbing all the applause and praise for having given such a wonderful presentation.
Why is it that our society and we ourselves have become so obsessed and biased towards an aspect of life over which no one seem to have any control over? Imagine a good-looking guy, who was born in London, if he would have been born in Africa, would he have received the same kind of reception as he is so used to getting now?
Coming back to our own country, this kind of bias is very much visible in our print media as well, in the matrimonial section of our newspapers. If you have ever gone through these pages, the first line that you notice is: “want a fair and good-looking bride for…..“.
A couple of days back, I was having a conversation with an acamedician who has done some research on the influence that advertisements seem to have on people. He was of the opinion, that such preferences of humans towards good looking things in life is very much a consequence of the genetic make-up, which has evolved over time and is now contributing to all the biases that our society has got so accustomed to.
It might be true to some extent of what he told me about the genetic make-up. But the relevant question that we all need to ponder over is whether such a thing is conducive for our society in order to be able to grow in a healthy manner? If not then what all changes can we bring so as to get rid of our biases, so that at least our next generation and the generations that would follow do not have to face the same kind of biases that we faced during our times?
The first thing that we need to do is to start thinking over and above and beyond our personal greeds and needs, and to think as to what’s good for our community, society, country and the whole World for that matter.
The reform process needs to start in one’s own family. Parents need to take full care and caution about the kind of values they are instilling in their children. Children seem to learn a lot by watching others. Parents should take extra care that they don’t exhibit any such behaviour which seem to transmit any kind of unwanted bias to their children, till the point they become mature enough to decide as to what’s right or wrong.
The media, both print and online, should take care that they don’t propagate the biases which have become very much a part of our society, in order to just gain a few bucks or in order to increase their ratings.
The schools and our educational system play an extremely critical role in helping individuals develop the cognitive skills needed to evolve into a well-functioning individual in our society. The teachers should therefore ensure that they transmit all the right kind of values to their students.
There is an urgent need for all the above institutions and every individual for that matter to play their part in this scheme of things.
Let us try to get rid of this bias, which has seemed to conquer the minds of so many in our society and has become a ubiquitous phenomenon.
Source for Image: http://www.superbrandsindia.com/images/brand_pdf/consumer_1st_edition_2004/fair-n-lovely/fair-&-lovely.htm, http://www.stylesindia.com/fair-lovely-ayurvedic-fairness-cream-p-103.html