Actress Rachael Leigh Cook, who you may recognize from the film She’s All That, or from the poignant and effective ad she did for the Partnership for a Drug-Free America in which she smashes an entire kitchen in an effort to keep kids off heroin, is “rallying against the perfect portrayal of female stars in the media – insisting she is outraged over the manipulated images of celebrities which are fed to vulnerable young girls.”
Now that’s the kind of stuff I wanna hear from a young woman of such solid, Midwestern stock!
Cook has joined with Geena Davis and her Institute on Gender and Media, the Girl Scouts of the USA and The Creative Coalition to fight the Photoshopping and airbrushing of women’s bodies. She’s urging young girls “not to measure themselves against the impossibly high standards of celebrities.” (Easy for a beautiful celebrity to say, of course. Harder for your average teen – and let’s face it – mom, to do.)
Cook says, “It breaks my heart to be part of an industry and part of a machine that really pushes out these images and propagates these really terrible standards that are false. Nothing that you see is real, even if you look at what looks like a candid photo of someone, anything can be done. It is false advertising and false advertising is a crime so why isn’t this a crime? I’m just up in arms about it.” (Quick – someone Photoshop a picture of Cook with 8 arms!)
All joking aside… this is of course a very worthy fight, and I’m happy to see such a well-spoken young woman waging it. Cook certainly knows all about standards of beauty – she’s been modeling since age 10. She admits to having had “food issues” as a teen, and is clearly trying to prevent other young girls from dealing with the same negative self-image. I applaud Cook for standing up and speaking out for those of us with less-than-perfect bodies, blemishes and a few stray hairs. (I’m not naming any names.)