Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Dark and Lovely

There was a girl, darker than ebony.

Unpopular- Unnoticed and Unhappy , she went on with her life.
Whether she was ambitious, we know not.
Whether she was a go getter, we care not.
She dressed to kill, it mattered not.
Was she smack dab in the middle awesome, we suppose not.

For what we know is that one fine morning, she got up applied OLAY NATURAL WHITE – or some such crap and la-la-la her life was set.
Guys wooed her. Mom and dad were finally happy for now to find a nice Indian boy won’t be a trouble at all. She was suddenly so popular – she had 521 likes on her picture – for crying out loud. And her life was set.
She made merry and lived happily ever after in the LA-LA land without a care. For, two of the most unattainable goals that a girl could set for herself – well yeah, she had reached them both.

No, no, she did not find an alternative source of fuel or stepped on Pluto.
Instead, She turned white, not to forget naturally so.
And, she was popular, Told you about the 521 likes, didn’t I?

Ram Ram Ram, can we sink  any lower than this on the commercial barrell? I mean, not that we were floating on top earlier. I have seen n number of advertisements that make me want to screech my eyes right out. But this brings us to a new low.

This obsession with white skin-  has got to stop and as if it was not enough that you throw in facebook too.
The fairer you are is directly proportional to the number of likes on your facebook and that in turn is proportional to how happy you are in life.

Can a commercial be anymore absurd and misleading?
Trust me, I am not making this up, see the commercial for yourself.
To tell you the truth I was always under the impression that it was the teenagers of the 90’s who had this obsession with light skin, because quite frankly it was only in 90’s when I was a kid that I heard some elder girls say things like, ‘is she fairer than me?’ or It’s just tanning I am a lot more fairer than this.
But along came the 21st century and obsession with color seemed like a thing of past. May be it was because my horizon expanded as I grew up or whatever but never once did I hear a single girl crib over her complexion and I thought to myself what mindless duds were those girls back then.
In fact I saw girls celebrate brown skin with such gusto as never before—but off late it seems as though underneath all this impression that was being created the ugly truth still loomed large and that is that our love for anything white is very much there, I just did not notice it.

Back in school once, we did not let Fair & Lovely, sponsor our event because we found it hard to buy the concept that fair and lovely comes up with every now and then. Trust, Fair and Lovely to believe that to be anything from a commentator to an air hostess – you have to be fair- else you should hide yourself in some ‘dark’ corner of your house. Besides, the name itself is so unnerving… Why, Dark isn’t lovely?

The darkest of the female actors in the industry (men or women) are airbrushed to look as if they have just stepped out of a tub full of plaster of Paris. And the worst part is that they themselves don’t mind selling it. Anyhow this post is just a way of venting out that frustration and anger which finds no outlet. Are, we as a race, so dumb that we can’t find more creative ways to sell our product that we don’t mind selling a color that is not even essentially our color?
Have we lost it to this an extent that as a nation we not only tolerate but also direct, feature in and come up with such absurd and meaningless ideas?
Or, is it that even after 6 decades of independence our colonial hangover isn’t still over and we still feel that – The Fairer The Better. For if it is so then where do we place ourselves as a nation?

This is a call to ban all such commercials or features that celebrate fairness in any other thing but attitude.