Like any good sister, Ashlee Simpson-Wentz has come to Jessica Simpson’s defense regarding comments about her weight.
Jessica, 28, sang at the Radio 99.9 Kiss Country’s annual Chili Cookoff on Sunday. Sadly, it wasn’t her performance that was intensely scrutinized. Wearing high-waisted jeans, belts and a form-fitting black tank, the curves that Jessica eradicated in order to play Daisy Duke seemed to be making a comeback. The media wasted no time calling attention to them.
According to Early Show co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez, she saw some newspapers that said some particularly hurtful things:
“They made some crack about her looking like she’s playing for the Dallas Cowboys as a linebacker, like her boyfriend (Tony Romo), who is the quarterback, I was so mad. Why do they have to pick on her?”
Sister Ashlee, 24, agrees, saying on her blog that she is “disgusted.”
Fellow curvy girl Kim Kardashian quickly jumped to Jessica’s defense in an interview with People Magazine, saying, “Call me crazy, but when I saw the picture I was like, ‘Oh my God, Jessica looks hot!’. . .I get that she does look curvier, but to me, there’s nothing wrong it.”
Jessica herself has stated that she’s not as concerned with her weight as she has been in the past, mostly due to her relationship with Tony Romo. She told People magazine, “I don’t really worry about it that much when I’m happy.”
The media explosion itself isn’t all that new. Jennifer Love Hewitt, Tyra Banks and Kate Winslet have all endured the same thing over time. But is this most recent attack sufficient to make women say enough is enough?
For women in the public eye, weight is always an issue. Whether they are mothers like Winslet, loving their curves like Tyra or just “happy” like Simpson, the pressure to lose weight knows no bounds. Even though I am not actively pressured to lose weight, I still see the covers of magazines and feel a twinge of guilt, knowing that a slim body is the standard and I don’t have one.
The media is never going to change their perception of beauty. There have been lapses over the years, but in the end, it always goes back to the image of the tall, slender woman with zero body fat. Ashlee Simpson-Wentz said in her blog,
“How can we expect teenage girls to love and respect themselves in an environment where we criticize a size 2 figure?”
Either we as women need to train ourselves to not be affected by Hollywood standards or we have to just look away and be happy.
That’s not guaranteeing that we will always be happy. We’ll have our lapses and fits of claustrophobic rage where nothing seems to fit or look nice. We just have to eventually come back down, look at ourselves in the mirror and be happy. If you’re not happy, change it. Work out, eat better, but in the end, be happy.
Mike Fleeman, Ashlee Simpson: Stop Talking About Jessica’s Weight, People.com
David Caplan, Kim Kardashian: Jessica Simpson ‘Looks Hot!’, People.com
Simpson Scrutinized For Weight Gain, CBS News
Joey Bartolomeo, Jessica Simpson: ‘I Don’t Regret One Single Day’, People.com