Speaking upon causes is important, it's also never too late to change. Bollywood celebrities are no gold standard for humanity, they're as human as the rest of us who learn and make mistakes. But, how forgiving is the internet?
Many Bollywood celebrities have been putting out Instagram stories and posts about George Floyd as alarmed by the course of events as the rest of us. Except, Bollywood's promotion of fairness ideals in Indian society has been called on to display on the internet as celebrities champion racial inclusivity.
As Bollywood stands up for George Floyd, netizens show them the mirror
Racial inclusivity has been a huge debate, even though by now it shouldn't even be a debate. Often with racism, there's a question of how much? Where does it exist? For some reason, it needs more proof than other arguments. It's scrutinised a lot more, and ignored a lot more.
The world right now is outraged over George Floyd a gruesome incident of a black man strangled to death while under arrest. The incident circulated on social media has become a matter of huge public concern in the USA and around the world. While the world stands up against racism, even Indian celebrities starting with Kareena Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, Deepika Padukone and Sonam Kapoor to name a few.
Many fans lauded their favourite Bollywood stars for standing up on matters that need amplified voices, need support from all sections to find enough weight. However, netizens are pointing out that these stars are all guilty in promoting false beauty standards, fairness creams which are inherently racist in their definition. For years now, this has been an ongoing debate of ethics and racism, and whether these products promote body positivity.
Priyanka Chopra expressed her shock and dismay over George Floyd and how a lot more needs to be done:
View this post on Instagram
There is so much work to be done and it needs to starts at an individual level on a global scale. We all have a responsibility to educate ourselves and end this hate. End this race war here in the US, and around the world. Wherever you live, whatever your circumstances, NO ONE deserves to die, especially at the hands of another because of their skin color. On May 25th, George Floyd was pinned down by the neck by a Minneapolis police officer and died. He laid there, fighting for his life, struggling to breathe, and other officers just stood there and watched. The officer has now been charged with murder. George, I am praying for your family. ❤️ Text “FLOYD” to 55156 and sign the petition. #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd
Kareena Kapoor Khan was one of the first to stand up against the matter:
Deepika Padukone shared a cryptic thought:
Sonam Kapoor shared a post:
Disha Patani wanted to spread a message:
A netizen took to Twitter to post some truths. All these actresses have promoted and endorsed fairness creams at some point:
Kareena Kapoor Khan used to promote Boro Plus fairness cream, and even though she's stopped she said in a conversation with Huffpost, "I don't do it anymore. But, at the same time, I don't want to sound pretentious and come across as holier-than-thou by saying I haven't or I shouldn't do it or that it's wrong. It's more complex than that. These are products that are available in the market. It's not like I am selling cigarettes or alcohol (which have proven health hazards) or meat. These are three things I said I'll never do. And I haven't. But if there's a product like a fairness cream which is available in the market and if there's a brand that thinks I'll be right for it, then why not? And the market for that is huge— a lot of people are using it."
Perhaps, we should look inward, if racism has a market here in India. Before pointing fingers and calling out injustice perhaps it's necessary to ask why we're selling racism in bottles. Of course, everybody is allowed a turnaround, to change their stand, but there's no undoing what's been done, as the internet proves every day.