I think by now we’ve all become somewhat familiarised with the ongoing case against singer Lizzo and how it’s resulted in another cycle of cancel culture. But how does that impact the general discourse surrounding parasocial relationships & celebrity perceptions & personhood?
In case you aren’t on the ins of the situation, singer & performer Lizzo was accused early on this month of creating a sexually, mentally & physically hostile work environment for many of her dancers. The allegations, although not yet confirmed, were backed by other dancers from some of Lizzo’s former tours.
Lizzo has since issued a statement denouncing the allegations made against her, but this movement opened room and space for a larger discussion.
The news came as a surprise, as most of Lizzo’s discography discusses empowerment & self-confidence, much against the current discussion her name is raising. But this raises a question, should Lizzo be canceled?
Cancel culture is a topic discussed by Uthhub & many other publications numerous times, we’ve all discussed its eradication. However, how does it play into this situation?
Fatphobia Is Not Ok
As the situation unfolded, a wave of body shaming found its way into Lizzo’s comment section. Now, while the alleged actions of the singer are unforgivable, two wrongs do not make a right. Bullying someone for their weight, especially with a platform as large as Lizzo’s, insinuates that all people of her size are as synonymously harmful and abusive. Which just is not the case. Being fatter than others, does not equate being more harmful towards others and this discourse needs to end and take its toll.
The Art & The Artist
The second aspect of cancel culture was commenters acting as though they’ve had any knowledge of Lizzo’s prior intentions. The fact of the matter is, up until these brave dancers took front stage with their story, no one so much as uttered a word against Lizzo in any regard, which raises a question of whether we’re quick to strip people, specifically celebrities of their humanity, individuality & right to defend themselves should a mistake heed itself.
Lizzo & The Victims
Now, am I saying that something as serious as sexual assault should be forgiven? No. Accountability and acknowledgement should be recognized when necessary. That being said, it’s not the public’s place to decide when and where Lizzo’s alleged actions are to be forgiven. Moreso, the victims aren’t pawns in your war against people of colour or overweight individuals, these brave women who’ve shared their story against a prominitive figure, risking their careers very well should be applauded for their courageousness and encouraged to move on however they wish to. Your opinion of the narrative publicly is not what those women need. They will forgive and forget (or maybe not) if they so choose.