It is the year 2016, a time where Fair and Lovely and Fair and Handsome are still a thing, and the practice of making fun of dark skin in the name of “comedy” does not only exist, but is also socially acceptable. I’ve been thinking about this a lot, and things took a turn for the worse when Tannishtha Chaterjee wrote a heartfelt article on how she was ridiculed and mocked on a comedy show (the “comedy” aspect is questionable, considering that their only source or humor persists out of prejudice), just because of her brown complexion. Is this what we have come to?
What even is genetics, right?
Years after years of launching of fairness creams, “whitening” scrubs and whatnot, people do not seem to realize that having white/light skin is not a symbol of eternal and youthful beauty. This world needs to get over the notion that white skin, blue eyes and blonde hair are synonymous with being beautiful.
“I don’t want to stand in the sun, my skin will get dark,” and “if you want to be fair, (insert some bogus advise/promotion of cosmetic name)!” are some fairly (pun intended) common things we get to hear today. But why is that? Why this obsession?
I have heard and seen advertisements refer to skin tones as “normal to dark”. Excuse me, but what exactly is your definition of “normal skin”?
This obsession doesn’t just stop at cosmetics. Oh, no, no. Everywhere one sees, there are ads looking for a “fair bride/groom” or a “fair” significant other. Is this people’s way of saying that brown/dark skin is supposed to be ugly? Undesirable? Unworthy of even matrimony? Does one not understand that by this implication, we are bringing down the confidence, poise and beauty of fellow brown citizens?
When one insults someone on the basis of the colour of their skin, know this: you are insulting thousands and millions of humans, you are insulting cultures that are richer and more vibrant than you could possibly imagine, you are insulting your ancestors, the ones that embraced their beauty, outer and inner. We did not go through millions of years of evolution, development and hard work for you to put us down just because you have a sick notion in your head that somehow, white= beautiful.