The Truth About Truth and Beauty Week

Brittany Kraff Staff Writer Although LAW members had a very positive outlook going into Beauty Week, and with much enthusiasm, other students did not feel the same. Many of the events LAW supported were perhaps misunderstood and also criticized.  LAW members aimed to show girls at Latin that they should be true to themselves and not compare themselves to their peers.  However, it is vital to recognize that the importance lies in the message and not in the messenger. As a Law member, the idea of Truth and Beauty week appeared to only possess a positive connotation. However, many fellow students, who are not Law members, were not as pleased with the week. From hearing the purpose of the week countless times in various meetings, it was unclear to most members that others did not grasp the meaning that was meant to come across. It was thought that the post-it-notes were bombarding and only contained false messages that had no real impact to those who read them, and that it was a fallacy to say that the models in the magazine pictures were not beautiful.  Many students, and even faculty members, were reluctant to sign the pledge “to love your body” because they felt that they still wanted to improve their bodies and shouldn’t need to accept them the way they were. However, what was constantly overlooked was the word “strive” in the pledge. It is clear that we cannot simply say, “I’m going to love my body” and actually follow through, but it is essential that we take the first step to realize how important it is to find ways to begin to love our bodies. It is imperative that we not only focus on the outside appearance, but focus on loving all that our bodies offer us on a daily basis. Once we can realize that, only then will true beauty be exposed. The post-it-notes were intended to bombard those who passed by. In our daily lives, we constantly focus on and associate ourselves with a negative atmosphere and outlook on not only our appearance, but also any other actions that do not live up to personal as well as societal expectations. With post-it after post-it revealing kind and encouraging statements, it was intended to change the negative environment to which we have all grown accustomed to and to reveal positivity instead. Even if you did not agree with every statement the post-its exposed, they succeeded in bombarding your mind with positive thoughts, which is the beginning to making those thoughts your own. It would indeed be a fallacy to say that the models displayed in magazines are not beautiful, but the reality is that those beautiful models do not look the way they are presented. Their real beauty is true, but the photo shopping that the images go through is not. Society is holding the “non-models” to expectations that models themselves cannot reach. Many students spoke out against the week because they felt that the members of law were not staying true to their word. For example, it was thought that the girls would simply go back to caking on their makeup in the following week. Whether an individual decides to continue to wear makeup, or not, that is not what is important. It is solely about the message that is meant to be exposed. In a more general sense, it is thought that some LAW girls perpetuate the negativity that is displayed in our school environment. However, the message was not only to impact those outside of the club, but to help those within the club as well. The idea of Truth and Beauty week affected every individual differently, and it is a personal choice to act on the message brought across. To be a member of LAW, you are not expected to be perfect examples of the message, but to do all that you can to “strive” to embrace the message as any other student outside of the club. We can continue to argue about the motives behind Truth and Beauty Week, or we can strive as a community to address the real issue that is at hand that Law brought has brought to our attention. The truth is that every person is constantly judged whether it be for appearance or character alone. It is crucial that we act as a community to eliminate the judgment that undoubtedly exists. Sadly, the majority of students at Latin can name at least one person they know or even whom they are close to that has a self-esteem issues and or eating disorders.  I encourage each person to not spend hours discussing the success or failure that Truth and Beauty week presented, but rather the true issue that exists in our school. Truth and Beauty week was only the first step to exposing the large issue and attempt to spark the process of eradicating this issue. It is now each student’s personal responsibility to act on his or her own account to repair the ongoing dilemma. As stated by the Dove Beauty campaign, we need to stop “[imagining] a world where beauty is a source of confidence, not anxiety” and instead make it reality.]]>