Thursday, February 5, 2009

Plastic Surgery

Today I saw a show that was holding a focus group and the topic for the day was on plastic surgery. A black plastic surgeon was on the show and he talked a little bit about what he saw on the job. He said that most of his patients are blacks and Latinos even in predominantly white areas such as the Upper East Side. This ignited some thoughts in my head. Again I do not mean to offend anybody. This is a very controversial topic but these are just my thoughts.

I had to admit to myself that contrary to popular belief more blacks and Latinos in New York City are getting surgeries than any other population. So why are more blacks and Latinos getting plastic surgery now, especially since they have been procedures that are usually done by the wealthy and collectively people of color do not have the money. In addition, it has been a predominantly white activity for a very long time. I personally think that getting plastic surgery done is just absurd. If plastic surgery is being done to rectify some kind of physical abnormality that is dramatically affecting your health or if it is a reconstructive surgery that is deemed a necessary operation by your doctor then thats fine. But to do a surgery in order to inflate your lips or to augment or reduce your breasts or gluteus maximus is preposterous to me. The African Doctor who was on the show said that the two top surgeries that Blacks and Latinos get done are the butt augmentation and the tummy tuck. How ironic, right!!!!! One of the women in the group said that people need to do exercise and consider changing their lifestyle before they consult somebody to do perform plastic surgery. To add to that, the other day my mom was watching the Tyra Banks talk show and a few darker skinned black females were trying to get some sort of skin lightener cream and it turned out to be a hoax. So Tyra asked why they wanted this cream?. They answered and it was discovered that the majority of them had complexes and really wanted to be light skinned because they thought people would view them as more beautiful in turn they would view themselves as more beautiful. This is reflective of self hatred!

I see a trend here and my opinion on plastic surgery is that people do it to feel better about themselves. This goes for everybody be you Black, Asian, White, or Latino. I think it is unnecessary if it is purely based on aesthetics. If you have to get a surgery done to feel better about what you look like or who you are then the problem is deeper and it lies internally. It is a common symptom of low self esteem and low confidence. I believe the solution to this complex is loving yourself for who you truly are. I know, I know, easier said than done. But little by little you have to start loving yourself for who you are and be comfortable in your own skin. You have to have feel good about yourself. What your fans think, what your mom thinks, what your best friend thinks, what the opposite sex thinks, what society thinks, none of that matters. But I will tell you what matters: who you think you are. Most of our thoughts are reflected in our actions; either consciously or subconsciously. So if you have a low self esteem it will be reverberated in the things you do for example getting plastic surgery done. If you do not believe it, read up on a powerful subject named Psychology. We as a people have to accept ourselves for how we are born. For a long time we had to live with what God gave us and could not change that. Now we have the power to change ourselves and I think it takes away from the beautiful diversity that the world has to offer. How blaze would life be if everybody looked the same. It would be a tragedy and an epic insult to the genetic variety of the human race.

I think we must all respect each other for being who we are because God made us all different for a reason; none of us should be entitled to change the way we look unless it is a serious health condition that requires us to alter the way we look physically. We as a human race have yet to come to terms with the fact that we are heterogeneous for a reason. Another aspect to this problem is that if you don't love yourself for who you are prior to the surgery what makes you think you will love yourself after the surgery. The surgery serves as instant gratification, nothing more nothing less, and it is a superficial way of attaining self confidence and affirming your self worth. People that get plastic surgery will probably find something else wrong with themselves so they are more likely to get another operation. That means they temporarily felt good about themselves after a surgery but found another imperfection and honed in on that. Then they will most likely get another surgery done to feel better about themselves. This means that plastic surgery did not get to the root of the problem it just grazed the surface, literally. The surgery did not give them that perpetual confidence they might have been expecting, it just served as another temporary high to superficially inflate their self esteem. The insecurities are still prevalent, but they are just masqueraded by the surgeries.

An underlying reason for why certain groups of people don't find themselves beautiful is because of the standards for beauty that society has set. One common group that struggles with self esteem issues and have a lot of insecurities are the dark-skinned black females. I blame most of the media for feeding the subliminal messages that thinner and lighter skinned females have the ideal body type. The darker skinned females succumb to societal pressure and peer pressure that lead them to think they are not beautiful. "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder". Everybody has a different taste; who am I to say that you are not attractive and vice versa. In turn darker women observe that the thin and fair skinned women get more love, attention, are more widely accepted and more popular. The darker women will go the distance in order to obtain everything I just mentioned particularly attention. Most people see the plastic surgery as a way of altering their physical structure and will take that extreme measure in order to get the approval that they feel they lack. Men generally speaking like lighter skinned girls more. The darker girls feel like they are inadequate and wonder why guys do not want to court them (I have dark skinned friends and this is what some of them tell me). But THEY ARE NOT WORTHLESS THEY ARE BEAUTIFUL! This supports my theory: in order to find true beauty you have to search deeply within then you can focus on your outward appearance. You cannot base your own feelings and thoughts on other peoples' perceptions of you. If that was the case everybody would drive themselves crazy.

In closing I would like to say that each and every one of us has to build our self concept and improve what our self worth is despite our insecurities; you do not need surgery to accomplish that. We need to start realizing that everybody has something good to offer in their own light, whether it be physical, intellectual or spiritual etc. Everybody is beautiful: black, brown, heavy tall, short. Well this Alex signing off its been real!


  1. I'm saying the media has its role in shaping ppl's perceptions about themselves, ppl that they interacted with.

    Parents should do a good job empowering and educating their children so that they don't grow up believing in what is unreal, or not having a defense mechanism to the cruel world.

  2. I definitely agree with you but we need to start educating people on how powerful the media is in influencing our own ideologies. We also need to be aware of how the media and can affect our lives in so many ways that can be detrimental to our growth. It affects in a lot of ways that go unnoticed. Thats why I think the media is implemented to control the masses and instill fear! Parents do play a pivotal role but some times don't even realize the effect it has on their kids or even on themselves thus they are unable to educate their kids. It would be like the blind leading the blind!

  3. My bad kid that was just AROD, the author of the blog!