Female Celebrities Can’t Make Mistakes

In America, it could be said we view celebrities as our royal family because the status they have is very similar yet still different.. We expect those that grace our screens and album covers to keep spotless reputations but also work tirelessly to produce the next big project. Many of us genuinely believe they can do this as if they have some superpower that sets them apart from us. The standard we hold them to is rooted in our awe of them, yet this standard has been twisted and holds women to a higher one in comparison to their male coworkers. This difference gives unequal advantage to men to fall from their perfect reputations without shattering their lives and leaves women tittering on the edge of losing it all.

The music charts say it all — women have been killing it lately. This year alone we see Lizzo has the third longest running #1 hit with “Truth Hurts,” Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy” has been in the Top 100 for 27 weeks and Taylor Swift’s album “Lover” has sold over 867,000 units. Like Beyoncé says, girls run the world, but this rule has some negative side effects. It has caused an intense light to be shined on these talented women that highlight every mistake they make. This makes their mishaps harder to overcome. Female artists are not afforded the same luxury of their male counterparts to mess up and have it erased when their next hits come out. Once media has captured their mistakes, then they’re knocked down a peg. For example, look at Britney Spears. She used to be one of the biggest pop stars back in the day, but when she hit a rough spot and spiraled, none of her good deeds could help her climb back up. When she released her album “Glory,” her sales did not reach the same heights as earlier albums. It will be interesting to see if Justin Bieber’s follow up album to “Purpose”, after his rough times, will affect his sales in the same manner as Britney’s did.

Remember when Ed Sheeran and Beyoncé performed “Perfect” in 2018? Beyoncé was dressed to impress and Ed looked like he just came from the grocery store. While a funny meme came from the event, so did a realization. The way Beyoncé dresses was necessary for her to reach the level of stardom she has. It’s a part of the many small details she has to think of to gain the status she has now. Ed didn’t have to rely on the appearance aspect of his performance to gain attention. The idea that men don’t write love songs based on real feelings helped launched him because it made him “unique.”

In 2016, Taylor Swift and Kanye West were the major trend on Twitter for a recording of a phone call between the two stars about Kayne’s song “Famous.” To sum it up quickly, Taylor agreed on part of a line that mentioned her, but when the song came out and had the whole line, she put out a statement about her not agreeing to the use of her name in the song. Kanye continued to worsen the event by creating a music video that had a naked lookalike of Taylor Swift, which comes too close to revenge porn for comfort, and let his fans name-call her. Suddenly, America’s sweetheart is being called a snake and other countless misogynistic names for not being accurate with her statement. The reaction Kanye received from his horrible actions pales in comparison; it didn’t matter that Kayne is older than Taylor and should have known his actions were disgusting and hurtful. Taylor was given the expectations that Kayne should have upheld.

We have high expectations for people who write sad songs and tweet about their cats — even higher ones if they’re women. While the expectations don’t differ as much as they use to, there’s still too large of a gap. This gap is not only harmful to the women in the music and movie industries but shows how it’s okay to differentiate between the men and women’s mistakes. We should vocalize the problem with this, especially as the presidential debate is creeping up and we will see this same behavior in politics as well.