The Terrifying Tale of Terrible Role Models (MY VOICE, by Kim Fidler)

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Terrifying TaleOctober is the month for celebrating Halloween and all things that are scary. It is frightening for me to think about the role models of today. In the days where behaving badly is presented as being a characteristic of a potential leader, we must be very careful about who we, as adults, and our children choose to idolize. We have people running for President of the United States who value negative attention over receiving no attention.

We have celebrities who earn millions, yet are terrible role models. Look, I am far from being a stick-in-the-mud or boring. I try not to be judgmental or intolerant. I enjoy entertainment. I value a person with confidence and bold audacity, as long as it is used for a positive result.

Let’s compare Donald Trump to Abraham Lincoln. Let’s compare Kanye West to Carrie Underwood, Need I say more? While Donald Trump and Kanye West should be viewed for their entertainment value, I, personally, do not want my children to behave like either of them. It is more difficult than ever for our children, who are growing up surrounded by social media and instant gratification to decide how to be the best, most-giving, and productive citizen that they can be.

However, there is hope! We do have those role models who are bold, confident, and audacious, but are ultimately held in high regard and are very respected individuals. Think of all the teachers, police, firefighters, etc. that walk among us every day.

Is anyone perfect? NO! Is anyone truly worthy of being considered a true role-model? YES! I want to take the opportunity to mention a few fabulous role models from the LGBT community and beyond. First, there is Peter Pan. This character was not female, but has traditionally been played by females. It is nice that an androgynous character can be loved equally be boys and girls! Andy Warhol- Artist, Walt Whitman – Writer, Sir Elton John – Musician, and Ellen Degeneres – Comedian. There are also many celebrities who support the LGBT community such as Pink, Lady Gaga, Cindy Lauper, and more. These high-profile advocates have the means and the media exposure to help spread the message of acceptance and tolerance.

So, please do not be terrified. There are wonderful role models everywhere who demonstrate tolerance and acceptance of others. Please remember that we can all be true role models with just a little effort. We simply have to have the willingness to give of our time, our influence, and our care for others!