In the past few weeks alone, Gigi Hadid was assaulted in Milan, and Kim Kardashian was assaulted in Paris then later robbed at gunpoint in her hotel room in the middle of the night. Somewhere along the line, the way we viewed our dolls growing up, as objects that exist solely for the purpose of our entertainment, has become the way we view humans.
Have a look at the responses to the attacks in the media:
An article immediately written after Hadid was assaulted while leaving a Max Mara fashion show in Milan.
A post from Twitter following Kim Kardashian being held at gunpoint.
The frightening part about these attacks is the lack of compassion involved in our perception of celebrities. The inhumanity has occurred on several levels - the attackers, the media, and the consumers of media who have given their less-than-compassionate opinions on the matter.
To the attacker: Who are you to assault another human? Would it be any more appropriate for you to assault a random person on the street? At what point did it happen that because someone works in the entertainment industry, they exist only for you to have your way with? To watch a video of the attacker, Vitalii Sediuk, fumbling his words while trying to explain how these events are acceptable, check out this article. And yes, his justification is just as ridiculous as you would imagine it to be.
To the media: It would be wise of you, if you are going to cover such horrifying events, to keep in mind that you are responsible for the portrayal of events that leave the victim shaken for far longer than the amount of time your story remains relevant. ‘Frantic Gigi Hadid lashes out with her elbow after being picked up by overzealous fan in Milan’? Let’s call it what it really is: ‘Gigi Hadid defends herself after being assaulted by a psychopath who has a record of assaulting celebrities for internet attention.’
To those with an opinion: Just because someone is in the media, does not mean they are less human. It does not mean they don’t have family and friends who care about them. It certainly does not mean that it’s acceptable to deem their life worthless in a public format.
We forget that the extent of celebrities’ lives goes beyond their existence as it pertains to us, consumers of media. We forget that these are humans we are dealing with, not dolls.