Sunday Discussion: Body Image

Over the last week I saw an article off the MSNBC website.  It’s about why women like to avoid the gym locker room.  It’s a very interesting read.

The article talks about women and I am sure men as well; that are afraid of changing clothes in a locker room.  Some will go even as far as changing in a bathroom stall.  Some people are afraid they will be judged if they are nude and another person sees a tattoo or something else on their bodies.  This is one example of a crisis occurring in this country.  And it is about body images and self acceptance.

People younger and younger are now doing anything they can to stay thin; even if it means starving themselves.  There have been reports of girls as young as five doing anything to stay thin.  The problem is our culture in America has taught people that you must be thin to stay beautiful.  Magazines, TV shows, and movies have taught some people to stay thin if you want to be beautiful and successful.  So you will see women starving themselves to achieve being thin.  And you will see guys do anything to have the perfect six-pack.  These people might throw up food, inject themselves with hormones, take diet supplements, exercise non-stop, or buy products that claim to make people prettier.   The average American is now bombarded by what the ideal body should look like.  And that’s so wrong.

Most of the world around us accepts their own bodies.  And people are comfortable in their own skin.  Most of the world also thinks us Americans are so uptight over how we look at ourselves.  So when countries like Japan see Americans get skirmish over their baths.  The Japanese people think us Americans are crazy.

Our media in America judges people who are different in a negative way.  People who are big or fat, really thin, too big or too small, or are nude; is judged by the media to be looked at in a negative light.  Or you will see these people being laughed at.  In fact the media started this way too early when an episode of Betty Boop was banned because she was briefly naked.

So what do people in America need to do.  Simple; learn to be comfortable in your own skin.  Ignore those pretty people in those TV shows and magazines.  Those people are touched up by a computer to make them look pretty and have no flaws.  People do not have to starve themselves or inject themselves with drugs to look pretty and flawless in society.  We need to teach everyone to look at our bodies that God created for us in a good way.  Even the Bible teaches us to be comfortable in our own skin.  To end this post; take a look at this story from the Huffington Post.  This writer wanted to get over her body image phobia by taking a nude photography session.  Now that takes some guts!


Movie Review: The Hunger Games

I went to see The Hunger Games on Saturday and it was a very good movie.  I am going to talk about the movie below so if you have not seen the movie; SPOILER ALERT!

The Hunger Games is set in the futuristic nation of Panem.  Some unknown event destroyed North America.  There are 12 poorer districts surrounded by The Capitol.  Which has very wealthy people and care about food, fashion, and fun.  The 12 districts specializes in a product.  For example district one specializes in special goods while district 12 specializes in mining.  The movie opens showing the poor conditions of district 12.  Many of the people are poor and hunt small animals for food.  The district has a black market to sell goods and make some money.  The main character Katniss often goes through the fence of the district in the woods to hunt.

The lottery is held each year in each district to select one boy and girl to be tributes for The Hunger Games.  The girl chosen was Primrose but her older sister Katniss volunteered for the games.  The boy chosen was Peeta and has a crush on Katniss.  The two chosen tributes go on a futuristic train (which was very cool) to The Capitol.  When they arrive they are met by a huge crowd.  The audience gets to see what people in The Capitol are like.  The people really do care about their culture.  Food, fashion, and entertainment are major draws for people here.  Everyone was dressed like it was the setting from “Alice in Wonderland.”  The chosen tributes get to train for the games.  And they get to live in the high life with lots of food and comforts.  Of course many of these tributes will be dead shortly.

One scene where my mom is worried about.  When the fashion designer designed Katniss dress to be on fire when she moves around in circles.  She wonders how many people will try to re-attempt that stunt only to be burned.  Each tribute gets to show off their skills in front of people and gets interviewed in front of a huge crowd.  The tributes are each rated and has bets placed by the people on who is going to survive.  The one thing I was wondering about is why no one from The Capitol was chosen for the games?  I guess the wealthy people in The Capitol are entitled to see poor kids battle each other to the death.  On to the games!

Each tribute rises to the battlefield and sees a bunch of weapons and supplies for survival.  When the cannon sounds many tributes run to this area and several are killed right away.  This is a very cool tech battlefield.  A cannon sounds each time a tribute is killed.  And the sky acts like a digital screen showing off the dead tributes.  The entire battlefield is controlled where obstacles and supplies can be put into the game.  One example is when Katniss strays too far from the field and fire is used almost killing her.  Peeta teams up with other tributes and tracks Katniss held up in a tree.  One supporter sends her burn cream in the game.  And on the next day she cuts down a Tracker Jacker nest onto the people below killing two.  But when you are stung by the pests you hallucinate and this affects Katniss for a few days.  Another tribute named Rue teams up with Katniss but it’s short-lived as she is killed.  I loved how the filmmakers showed Rue’s death through her eyes.  And how Katniss treated her body with flowers.  Thus in turn creates a riot in Rue’s district.

The games continue with more tributes being killed and Katniss and Peeta teaming up.  Peeta camouflage techniques were excellent.  They get help from supporters with healing cream.  Then they face their final battle.  The rules were changed to allow both tributes from the same district to win the games.  The game controls put in Wolf Mutts to end the game.  Three tributes battled on top of a ship and at the end the two district 12 tributes were left.  The game rules then changed to have them battle each other to the death.  But just before they both eat Nightlock; a poisonous berry plant.  The games are declared over and Katniss and Peeta are the winners.  This causes some people to become upset and angry over the results.  Which is in the second book.

Overall I thought the movie was great.  The movie was a little too long.  But the action all throughout the movie was excellent.  All throughout the games seeing the bodies of dead kids with their eyes wide open and no movement makes you think about why these games are wrong in so many ways.  The author Suzanne Collins created The Hunger Games to show the effects of poverty, opposition and war on others.  Hopefully this is something we will never see in this world.  But this movie can give you lots to think about after seeing it.  Do go see The Hunger Games.  It made $155 million in its opening weekend in the box office.  And one little known fact about Suzanne Collins; she attended high school at the Alabama School of Fine Arts in Birmingham.

Images from The Hunger Games Movie