Sydney Spies and the Curse of Beauty.
Sydney Spies is, in most eyes, a beautiful girl. She is also, alas, seemingly quite unpopular at her High School. The reason? She wants to be seen in a certain way – and the authorities, and it seems, her fellow students, don’t want her to be seen in that way.
Sydney Spies is suffering from what I call the Curse of Beauty. This is the counterpart to the hostility that very intelligent people often receive from their more ordinary fellows. Truly beautiful people are rather loathed by their same sex colleagues (except the gay ones I expect). An instinctive enmity exists between people of ordinary looks, and people of exceptional looks, of the same sex. This is, in my view, what Sydney Spies is experiencing. Basically, the ugly people around her, can’t stand her. (Let’s be blunt.)
Sydney Spies attempted to have a picture of her in a yellow skirt and black off the shoulder top placed in the Durango High School yearbook as her Senior Year photo. This was refused by Durango High School, whose authorities were of the opinion, in the words of Brian Jaramillo, that it would be unprofessional. He said: “We are an award winning yearbook. We don’t want to diminish the quality with something that can be seen as unprofessional.”
My reaction to this is quite simple: the Durango High School is run by conformist, narrow-minded morons. The rejected photo is not too strong for inclusion, in my view. It just shows something that is not allowed in Durango High School: a personality. Sydney Spies is showing her innate personality in the construction and composition of the photograph. She is showing herself as she would like to be seen. However, at Durango High School, it seems that everyone must conform to an ideal of what is “professional” - that is strait-jacketed within a narrow set of rather dull rules and limitations about what is an acceptable photograph.
A school yearbook should show the people of the school as they really are. It should show them in all their diverse character. It should not be a robotic showpiece in which everyone is presented in the same set of limited ways to create an overall “look” that is deemed “award-winning”. It should be true to the personalities in the school. Quite clearly, the Durango High School yearbook is not true to the personalities of the students. It is actually a constructed lie, that seeks to present the Durango High School students in a certain way that is deemed “acceptable”. It is a photographic fraud, thereby. I would suggest that the only truthful photograph in the Durango High School yearbook may be the very ones they rejected of Sydney Spies. In fact, they rejected three of her submitted photographs – all for pretty much the same reason one intuits – she is just too attractive. (Though they said the last one missed their deadline). Instead, they used her school ID photograph!
There is one positive side to this controversy, from Sydney Spies’ point of view. She wished to be seen in a certain way. She wished to present her personality through a particular kind of image. Well, now she has, to the whole world – for one of those rejected yearbook photos has been run by news agencies around the world. So, the wish for Durango High School to censor their student, Sydney Spies, has had the unintended effect of making her much more famous than a yearbook would have done. That strikes me as suitably funny.
There is a not so funny side to this though. Sydney spies has experienced considerable bullying from her fellow students at Durango High School since all this fuss began. This is characteristic of the Curse of Beauty, as I describe it. I am certain...100% certain that ALL the bullies are ugly in comparison to her. This controversy around her yearbook photograph is just giving an excuse to the ugly ones to take out their resentment for her beauty, on her. A beautiful person would understand her position and viewpoint and would, in my view, be very unlikely to bully her. I am sure that the resentment she has experienced at Durango High School has come from those who are challenged in the looks department. This is parallel to the kind of resentment gifted kids often receive, from their less intelligent colleagues. It is always the dumb ones who hate the smart. Just so, it is always the plain, or even ugly ones, who hate the beautiful.
I wish Sydney Spies well and hope that she becomes the successful model she aspires to be. No-one should ever be in the position of being bullied because of their innate gifts as Sydney Spies is being – not if that gift is beauty, intelligence or any other gift. All who are gifted, in whatever way, should be welcomed for their gifts – for those gifts make the world a better place. Durango High School has forgotten that. It has proven itself, in this “scandal”, to be an ugly place – ugly at heart and, no doubt, ugly by sight, too.
Best of luck Sydney Spies. I hope you get to be seen as you wish to be.
Posted by Valentine Cawley
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