Toxicity of Cancel Culture

Guys, it’s time; we must discuss the elephant in the room, the big bad monster living under every influencer’s bed, the sleep paralysis demon that haunts them at night—cancel culture. Now, we’ve all heard of it and you may even have participated in it, but what had once been a means to hold celebrities and influencers accountable for their actions has now turned into a ruse for death threats and bullying. I cannot deny the fact I had once thought cancel culture was the perfect tool to discipline immature influencers, much like a parent chastising a disobedient child, but I had soon come to realize I could not be any more wrong.

Before I go on, I would just like to state that none of this is me saying influencers deserve a free pass for any of their past despicable behaviors. I believe it’s important that individuals with such a following and that much of an influence on young impressionable minds be held accountable for what they’ve done. HOWEVER, how it is being done nowadays is honestly disgusting and needs to change ASAP.

I can count on both of my hands and feet the number of influencers that have in some way, shape or form been canceled in 2021, and we’re only FOUR months in. Just a couple of months ago, the internet was up in arms because the D’Amelio sisters, in the words of their audience, had been “extremely rude and blind to their privilege” over the fact that they gagged at the taste of snails. Now I don’t know about you guys, but my palette consists of chicken tenders and french fries, so if I were told to eat a snail, I would want to vomit too. From that incident alone, Charli D’Amelio proceeded to lose thousands of followers, and her comment section was filled with death threats and variations of “I don’t know why you’re famous anyways, you’re untalented.” This whole situation just confirmed to me the severity of cancel culture.

Social Media Body Photo by Brandi Ibrao from Unsplash

Not only has the audience begun to nitpick, craving to find an influencer’s faults, but gone are the days in which you were allowed to be human and make mistakes and learn from them. Before you hate me and disregard everything I’ve said, hear me out! Growing up, we’re taught that we’re bound to make mistakes; it’s a part of life, and it’s how you grow (well, at least that’s what every teen coming-of-age movie has taught me, but I digress), but now these same “influencers” who are children and young adults, and whose brains haven’t even matured yet are supposed to be perfect. Then, once they mess up, cue the “I thought something was off about them” and “My flex is, I never watched them” comments. I would like to reiterate this isn’t me saying they get a free pass, and I’m not referring to any criminal behaviors when I say this, but why must we expect perfection from them when we still make mistakes?

My final point in the matter is what comes after the mistake is made (or discovered by some deep-dive into their Twitter and Instagram post from nine years ago), and the apology is given. Our generation fails to allow the same person they held accountable for their actions to grow and do better, which in my opinion, was the whole point of calling them out in the first place. The influencer or celebrity can show their growth through their actions, and still, it is not enough and is often categorized as performative. I am not saying to forget what they’ve done, but how must they prove to you they’ve changed if you don’t allow yourself to see it. I know I am not perfect, and I never expect anyone else to be. I am not who I was at 13; I’ve matured, failed, learned and grown, so I expect the same is possible for them.

Money and fame aside, these influencers or celebrities are just human, and it’s time our generation realizes that!

*Also, sidebar: if you’re doing a deep dive going on 10 years into old posts… PLEASE go touch some grass and stop searching for problems.

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