Fairness cream advertisements in India must be banned as racist
I have a good laughter looking at the fairness cream advertisements. Don’t you?
It’s funny because I assume that when these advertising companies sit and discuss their target audience, what comes to their mind is surely, narrow-minded racists who are either fair looking and are proud of it or those who are a little darker and have low self-esteem issues. I mean, isn’t that the way these fairness cream companies are trying to be sell their products? If you notice the premise of most of these ads, you will see that unless you are fair enough, nobody will notice you or you will not be successful in life. Racism is seen as a social evil and is also criminalized in its use. But I feel the bigger problem lies in allowing such advertisements to be shown or the production of such fairness creams. Sure, we cannot blame the companies as they are just making a living for themselves and people are there in this world who feel that they might look better with a lighter shade of skin. But is that the reality? Are we not living in a world where people can be tolerant of whatever color they are?
In India, we have actors like Shah Rukh Khan, Shahid Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Asin, etc, who act in short commercials for fairness creams and are also seen holding these cream bottles in a large poster or billboards. And this is a huge issue because these actors have such a large fan following and some of these fans go to an extent of idolizing them that they go and buy these fairness creams to be just like them. It is because of such conditioning done by media people that they have become accustomed to prefer people with a fairer tone. This is not a fight against media. This is not a fight against the people who advertise such fairness products. This is a fight against the basic development of racism that has taken place in the past few years and it needs to be stopped. You don’t need to be fair to become successful in life. I mean, did Barack Obama become the President of the United States twice in a row. Was that because of fairness creams? Nah! You don’t need fairness creams to get noticed or be attractive. Heard of Nina Davuluri? She was Miss America 2014 and she is shade darker than the average American woman and yet, she could beat all her contestants. And what about Will Smith? He’s one of the most attractive and successful actors in the world and he’s African American. Remember the words of late Michael Jackson who sang in one of his songs- “It doesn’t matter if you’re black or white!”
About the Author: This article is contributed by Joshua Moses, our intern.