Have you heard about the newest media sensation, Susan Boyle? She is a woman who appeared on the European tv show, Britian’s Got Talent and wowed the judges. When I first saw the headlines, I couldn’t imagine how good someone could be to get that kind of attention. I didn’t click on the headlines because they were only videos on cnn.com and I avoid those – I like to read my news when I get it from the internet. But I’m a news junkie, and eventually I caught the Talent clip on the real CNN – and the story unfolded. The woman has talent. She can really sing, and she makes a difficult song seem effortless. There are plenty of people with nice voices, so what’s the big deal? I think it is about the way Susan Boyle looks. When she stepped up to sing, people (and you can see this in the judges’ and audience’s reactions) did not expect her to be a good singer because she does not comply with society’s definition of “pretty”. Simon Cowell, specifically, who is a judge on the show, is known for judging people on their looks first and even making comments about them, which I think is immature and disgusting. But I have to sound off on this topic because it’s been all over the news lately, and this morning, Susan was on The Early Show. For some reason that I can only attribute to the way she looks, the Early Show anchors were treating her like she was mentally challenged – they were talking slowly, etc. One of the Early Show anchors stated, “Let’s see if she can sing early in the morning”, prompting Susan to do an acappella version of the song that made her famous, I Dreamed a Dream from Les Miserables. It was wonderful, but maybe that Early Show anchor should be treated as if she is mentally challenged – it was early morning in New York, but Susan Boyle was doing the interview from her home in Scotland, where it was 11:30-midnightish! Duh.
I personally think it’s an extraordinary story because Susan Boyle is 47 and with a voice like that, I’m surprised she wasn’t discovered sooner. I’m sick of everyone picking on her looks and using them to define her as a person. I think it’s terrible that society says that people have to look good to have worth. Maybe that’s why plastic surgery runs so rampant, but to me, plastic surgery tends to stick out. A lot of times, I can tell when someone’s had something done. I think it looks fake and strange, and it baffles my mind that people would risk their lives to get knocked out and sliced open just to change something aesthetic. Not including those who get disfigured, of course – I can’t blame those people, and I feel really sorry for them especially after noting how society acts about looks. Good looking people are assumed to be more successful, they’re listened to more often, and they’re just overall held in a higher regard in society than people who look different or what society deems as “ugly”. To me, ugly is the mean, heartless person who doesn’t care about others. I think Susan should be applauded for conquering society’s “ugly”. Bravo Susan, for a job well done – I hope you get to fulfill your wish of singing for the Queen!
For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, here is a link to the clip of the episode of Britian’s Got Talent featuring Susan. As one of the judges put it, she is a privilege to listen to! I get chills and tears in my eyes as I watch those snooty judges eat crow while Susan triumphs!