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The Celebrities We Idolize... Is It All Smoke and Mirrors?

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Similar to any other teen, I love catching up on the latest celebrity news. We are sucked into the perfectly written teaser headline and BOOM, we are believing every word written. If you're a huge fan you have taken this information and added another quality or feature to your hero superstar. Okay, now let's rewind. Every teen has their favorite celebrity, musician or sports hero. Of course we all know being able to meet these icons is only a dream that replays in our heads over and over while the story keeps getting increasingly better of what would take place if we actually met. We "create" our own version of what we believe our celeb crush would be like through bits of information, photos, and videos we see via social media and television. This information we have compiled becomes our very own character. This process kind of reminds me of how an avatar is created and the key ingredients such as personality, looks, ethics and of course the choices they make all play a role in the cutting of the mold. We hear about publicists posting on social media on behalf of their famous clients, and unless you've been living under a rock, you know this is necessary in the entertainment business. We understand and we forgive while we ever so slightly want to believe all of their tweets, Instagram and Facebook posts were posted by our crush's fingertips especially if we are one of the few lucky enough to get a re-tweet or like.

I can't help but wonder why fame and fortune is equivalent to smoke and mirrors. When I was younger I was a fan of the Jonas Brothers. I believed everything they said and loved the fact they were such respectful young men who had great morals and values. I'm not sure I thought they were extremely talented as singers, but I liked their positive and clean style. Now that I am older, I do realize how the world of celebrities is tweaked and shaped to appeal to the audience desired, leaving us peering through their smoke and mirrors effect. After reading Joe Jonas' essay in New York Magazine, I feel a bit betrayed that I never really knew the "real" Joe Jonas. I may have liked them even more had I seen the trials and tribulations they faced on their road to success. The exposure of a celebrity's humanness creates a connection between them and their fans. In my opinion, Joe's revelation of smoking weed and drinking alcohol is nothing terrible and actually very normal for his age at the time. So what if he explored being a teen? In this millennial generation I feel it's even more important to share our experiences and how it has affected us. I believe everyone, especially role models and celebrities, should make every effort to lead by a positive example. We are human, we make mistakes and we learn from them. The media and publicists are creating "avatars" with their "smoke and mirrors effect." Whatever happened to true, real-life heroes? I've never learned from someone who was perfect... Thank you, Joe, for telling the truth... even after it's all said and done.