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The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

Unconditional support: the blind following of celebrities and influencers

A+student+looks+at+Kanye+West%E2%80%99s+Twitter+account.%0A
Emma Vaaler
A student looks at Kanye West’s Twitter account.

Trends in fashion, music, arts, design, food and politics are constantly changing. These shifts are shaped by celebrities and influencers, though only possible with people who follow in those footsteps. 

The people who influence society give individuals the ability to identify themselves with another person. People feel they have a personal relationship with the celebrity as a result of the connections created through social media and celebrity appearance. When people start to associate themselves with the style and life of celebrities, the aesthetics cause them to blindly follow the influencer. This has led to people ignoring the severe wrongdoings of celebrities throughout history. A prime example is the late New England Patriots star, Aaron Hernandez, having loyal fans rush to very impactfully support him during his murder trial in the early 2010s.

Being dazed by aspects of a celebrity’s life has recently become more noticeable through social media than ever before. With many celebrities being unconditionally supported, political aspects of their lives are being even more influential.

Kanye West has been a controversial figure in recent news. What many would consider a problematic celebrity, West is an individual who is unconditionally supported by large quantities of fans. Since before his split from his former wife, Kim Kardashian, West has been highly active about many issues.

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West’s presidential run was extremely criticized by not only the public, but also by his family because of statements he made surrounding extremely controversial and political topics. He also presented obscure behavior which had increasingly been publicized since his campaign and leaving many stating that he is acting in the way a cult leader might and questioning the intentions of his campaign. Kanye stated, “God just gave me the clarity and said it’s time. You know I was out there, ended up in the hospital, people were calling me crazy.” West made many statements surrounding religion, abortion, racism, and capital punishment attempting to convince his followers to absorb his beliefs. While many of his statements have no grounds and constantly change, his fans’ opinions have changed with his. 

In interviews and social media, West has made comments proving to be motivated by a desire to create buzz around his name. The Kardashian family and other celebrities, such as Gigi Hadid, have condemned his behavior, calling it childish and cruel with poor motivation. 

With this, it is obvious his fans have stuck by him ignoring the seriousness of his behavior. Through all of his controversy, West’s concerts have continued to be sold out and fans consistently back up his controversial tweets and Instagram posts. Along with this, recently numerous diehards have chosen to attend West’s Donda Academy, spending $15,000 annually for an unaccredited school which some may depict as a cult-like appearance. 

Last week many were disturbed by West’s tweet, “I’m a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I’m going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE. The funny thing is I actually can’t be anti-Semitic because black people are Jew also.” This resulted in his Twitter and Instagram accounts being banned. Some of West’s same loyal followers defended his harmful comment, stating it was simply a joke. Other people with a platform like Jamie Lee Curtis have stepped up in recent days to condemn his actions and attempt to point out the blindness his followers have. 

Many fans have decided to base their views on West and put him on a pedestal the same way fans have done for celebrities before. Senior Ella Jones stated, “So many people think it’s all a joke and just want to see someone they like or idolize because music has an impact on the whole country. I think a lot of people excuse behavior like this because they don’t think it will ever actually be a problem.” She is referring to West’s fans who do not believe his actions will be turned into a major problem when there are enough people who blindly follow everything he does. 

The ability for celebrities to promote their opinions will always occur with their large platforms and the constant growth of social media. The major issue at hand is the glorification of celebrities whose actions are so clearly harmful. Celebrities who make statements which are incorrect or harmful to certain people often contain no grounds. This influences others to believe the statements and create their views around the ones of a celebrity they identify with. As more people stop questioning the views of celebrities whom they identify with and idolize, the ability for society to function at its best will quickly start to reverse.

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About the Contributor
Emma Vaaler, Photo Manager
Emma Vaaler is a senior at Pleasant Valley and will be serving as the photo manager of the Spartan Shield this year. She is 17 years old, was a dancer for most of her life, and lived overseas for seven years in Finland and Russia. She is a lifeguard at the Outing Club and a barista at Dunn Brothers Coffee. Emma is looking forward to graduating in May and attending an undecided university to major in marketing. She loves to travel and has spent a huge part of her life taking trips around the world with her family exploring new cultures. Emma enjoys being on frontline, cheering on PV student-athletes, and is excited for the rest of the year. In her free time, she spends time with friends, getting coffee, and playing with her dog, Apollo. Emma enjoys writing and managing social media and is excited about her role in the Spartan Shield this year.   
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    Melody ROct 29, 2022 at 7:59 am

    I agree that celebrities wield a lot of power, even when they do things wrong. Some famous people whine about ‘cancel culture’ but as this case shows, even when celebrities do something clearly wrong, they still maintain a following. I’m glad that West is facing consequences in the form of losing brand deals.

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Unconditional support: the blind following of celebrities and influencers