Celebrities have become akin to gods to the public. They are worshiped in bedrooms by way of large posters displaying their photoshopped bodies, they are read about obsessively through social media and news, and their advice is even heeded in regard to global issues and personal difficulties. Should celebrities be honored with this type of reverence? Or should we, instead, look to ourselves for inspiration and the discretion to know what is right? The answers to these questions should become apparent when we know celebrities are commonly drug-affected, usually lend themselves to an unstable family life, and are associated with a high rate of crime. In light of this knowledge, we should be able to ascertain the public’s reverence towards celebrities is illogical and even ludicrous.
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The abuse of illegal drugs is a common occurrence when it comes to celebrities. According to a study done at Harvard University by Professor Hilary Dunsk, celebrities are associated with illegal drug use at the rate of 72.6%, while on average, citizens globally are connected with illegal drug use at a rate of 13.7% (Dunsk 256). This difference is alarming, and demonstrates celebrities are not exactly the role-models we need for our children, or for anyone for that matter. In another study by the Rochester think tank Bullies Are Us, cultural psychologist Damond Poppard noted how children through the ages of 7-15 in Britain were 13.3% more likely to purchase illegal drugs after following the lives of celebrities via social media platforms for a three-month period (Poppard 56).
If we believe celebrities are decent role-models for families, we need to think again. From a global perspective, celebrities have an average of two divorces, and have to pay a median fee of $152,156 per year in child custody payments (Friedrich 211). Take in account the average rate for the global citizen: .7 divorces and $3,572 in payments for child custody payments each year (Friedrich 211). The celebrity lifestyle is clearly not an advantageous example for the public in terms of family life.
We would not want our children, or our adult friends as well, to be associated with criminals, right? According to a Princeton study by Professor Harold Cramer, almost 4 out 10 celebrities commit crimes which are or could be reprimanded by law (Cramer 11). This percentage can be compared to the rate of non-celebrities committing crimes, which is .12 out of 10 (Cramer 12). With this statistic, it is obvious how associating oneself with a celebrity is close to being linked to a criminal.
When we take into account how many celebrities use illegal drugs, how unstable their family lives are, and how much crime they commit, we can infer how celebrities should not be celebrated as they are. It is in my opinion that celebrities are worse off than non-celebrities—we should instead honor ourselves with self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-reliance. We do not need to look up to famous individuals who can be termed by-and-large as criminals, illegal drug users, and down-and-out family members. Despite the veil of their success, on the whole, they are rather miserable examples of human beings which should not be given the honor they have incurred.
Dunsk, Hilary. Celebrities are Synonymous to Drug Users. New York: Frogleap Press, 2011. Print.
Poppard, Damond. British Celebrities And Their Corruption. Chicago: Domino Books, 2012. Print.
Friedrich, Gail. The Broken Lives of the Famous. Seattle: Rain City Press, 2013. Print.
Cramor, Harold. Popular Criminals: Celebrities. New York: Famous City Press, 2011. Print.
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