Selena Gomez Slays the AMA Stage

Its no secret that some of our most beloved celebrities have cracked under the pressure of fame. And who can blame them? Relationships, addictions, mental and physical health: they’re all hard enough without a constant spotlight. Sometimes the consequences of fame become to hard to bear, even for the strongest of our favorites stars. Other times, that pressure will break their outer shell  and give birth to a stronger, wiser human being. In essence, all the bad is turned into something good- something powerful and resilient. Selena Gomez became the embodiment of this epic transformation at the recent 2016 American Music Awards.

“And I had to stop, because I had everything, and I was absolutely broken,” she said. “I kept it all together enough so I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together to where I let myself down.”

Most people assume they know what Selena is referring to. It would be hard not to. For months, Selena’s off and on relationship with Justin Bieber was everywhere. Literally. Every website, every magazine…everyone had something to say about the romantic struggle between the two. Like any long, serious relationship, it was a long and hard road to moving on. But, that was only one of the overwhelming obstacles Selena faced in the last couple of years.

Amidst all of the media-frenzy over her love life, in 2015, Selena confirmed that she had been diagnosed with Lupus. Being diagnosed with a potentially life0threatening disease did nothing to calm the constant media hysteria around her. People questioned the authenticity of her claims. Some even suggested it was a plight to gain attention and sympathy. As it would turn out, that couldn’t have been further from the truth. Though, the genuineness of her claims did little in shielding her from the negativity.

It was during all the chaos surrounding Selena’s life that  the negativity, the doubts and the insecurities managed to slip through the cracks of her well-built armor. Then came the anxiety and depression that would force her to take actions.

The attention her relationship invited didn’t help her condition at all. Even with the amazing support of deathly loyal fans and equally-loyal friends and family, the odds weighed against Selena.The relationship drama was more than enough to overcome for any sane person. The Lupus was debilitating. Throwing in anxiety and depression to the mix? It was a recipe for failure. But Selena refused to go down without a fight.The months of physical and emotional pain were enough to render her helpless to cruelty of the media and judgement of the world,  but still she was able to see her next necessary move. Rehab.

After canceling 34 shows left in her tour in August, Selena reportedly checked into a rehab in Tennessee. Selena went dark over social media and began to focus on her mental health. After years of a selfless battle fought for the benefit of her friends, family and fans, she made choices that would benefit her own happiness. The result are nothing short of mind-blowing.

On the night of the American Music Awards, Selena came back into the spotlight with a fire that had nothing to do with her eye-catching red dress. The confidence oozed from her: it was reflected in her presence, her attitude and, most definitely, in her speech.

Selena may not have performed this year, but she still stole the show and slayed the stage like no other. She is the same Selena that fans have all come to love and look up to, but shes stronger now. Shes filled the the gaps in her armor. It won her the respect and admiration of many. Though, Selena doesn’t need it.  Not anymore.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bare Bums but No Nipples: Are Naked Female Athletes Feminist?

Apparently this week’s issue to attack is nudity! After Justin Bieber showed his bare bum on Instagram, new stories of famous athletes sans clothing has caused quite an uproar. When ESPN Magazine’s annual body issue came out this year, readers were shocked to see female celebrity athletes naked. Many athletes were involved in the magazine like Brittney Griner, Aly Raisman, Natalie Coughlin and Saden Parks to name a few. And although they were athletes from all different sports, they all had two things in common. They lacked clothes, and were all women.

Now in an idealistic world, this is feminism. Women’s sports which are often forgotten about in media and are making themselves known. It’s empowering. Women are showing off the bodies that have generated their successes in sports. It’s actually kind of beautiful. These women are shown in a powerful light where every gleaming muscle that is shown, the viewer knows must have taken hard work, dedication and pure talent to achieve. However, I’d like to address to those who perceive these photos as simply demeaning. To that, I say you have a point.

The human body is a beautiful thing and in reality should not shamed. The images shown in the ESPN Magazine are not meant to be sexual but powerful. The decision  to pose for this magazine should not be criticized by society as the owner’s of the bodies (i.e. these athletes) should be allowed that freedom. For that is an important component in feminism. Being comfortable in one’s own skin- whether you’re nude or not- is crucial. The inclusion of all body shapes and types in the photos are also dually noted and appreciated.  Track and field hammer thrower Amanda Bingson shows off her curves and muscles and quotes “I think it’s important to show that athletes come in all shapes and sizes”. There is not one single athletic body type nor is there one beautiful body type. A body positive mantra for both men and women is imperative when talking about feminism.

However, the magazine lacked to include any male athletes. And even the female genitalia was cleverly covered or positioned in a way that was censored.  Because of this, the media has continued follow with the all too familiar stereotype that the all bodies should be covered, unless they are female bodies; in which as long as they are used to make a profit is quite alright. Rarely are men on display nude and frankly, I think it’s doing more harm than good. This confusing, hypocritical view we have on nudity in today’s society needs some work.

What do you think? Is it feminism or not? Leave a comment down below using the hashtag #glamorouspaper

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