The Negative of Celebrities Partying Covid
High school students continue to gather together socially; however, most of us have learned how to do this safely. Most kids and adults in our community wear masks and maintain the social distancing guidelines when leaving “our bubble”. Due to the harmful implications of contracting Covid-19, we know that we need to put our community first and be safe when seeing others. However, this positive behavior can be challenged by the contradictory behaviors of influential individuals.
Celebrities and influencers from TikTok, Youtube, Instagram, and other social media platforms act as role models to a young generation. Due to pandemic boredom, people are constantly looking at what these famous people are doing. Many of them have been following CDC guidelines; however, a significant portion of them have not. Some have even gone as far as to throw parties indoors, without masks, and without following safety protocols.
Many idolize these people, so why is it acceptable for them to party while the rest of the country is expected not to? Fans have been quick to notice celebrities' mistakes because they're in the spotlight, but some would argue that this increased attention heightens their moral responsibility as influencers.
Due to the careless behavior of some celebrities, many of them are being “cancelled.” The term “canceled” was coined in 2014, and six years later it is still heavily used. To be “canceled” is to have support withdrawn from public figures by their fans in protest. Cancel culture is often toxic, but in some cases it makes sense.
TikTok stars Bryce Hall and Blake Gray held a party in August for Bryce’s 21st birthday. Bryce and Blake both live in the L.A. “Sway house” with many other famous TikTokers. Hosting a party for around 100 people during a pandemic is incredibly irresponsible, especially since they have millions of young adoring eyes watching everything they do.
In August, as there were 613,000 confirmed cases, this party did not go unnoticed. As a result, Bryce Hall was “canceled” across all social media platforms and in numerous news articles. Hall and Gray faced thousand dollar fines, up to a year in jail, and they both were charged with misdemeanors. To many people’s surprise, after just two weeks, they seemed to be unscathed by the media and continued to enjoy their empire of fans as if nothing happened. What often goes unnoticed in this culture of cancelling stars is that there really are all-too-often no lasting consequences. Usually these celebrities lose a handful of followers, but after just a small time they frequently recover the lost ones and oftentimes gain even more.
Another perpetrator of irresponsible pandemic behavior was model Kendall Jenner. She threw a large Halloween party for her birthday on November third and consequently faced huge backlash on Twitter. The Kardashian/Jenner clan have been huge advocates for following Covid-19 social distancing guidelines, but their claims seem grossly hypocritical in light of their recent activities. A clip on Kylie Jenner’s Instagram story showed many people unmasked and close together. Similarly to the boys from the hype house, Kendall faced temporary harsh publicity but faced no major consequences.
Kim Kardashian has not been openly partying like her sisters, but she has been called out multiple times for insensitive comments relating to quarantining. She stated, "After 2 weeks of multiple health screens and asking everyone to quarantine, I surprised my closest inner circle with a trip to a private island where we could pretend things were normal just for a brief moment in time". While Kim took the necessary precautions for her trip, she faced fierce backlash for flaunting her wealth and privilege, while so many are suffering. However, to award them some credit, the family did cancel their annual Christmas party, hopefully setting the example that we should not be partying during a pandemic.
Morgan Wallen, an American singer, was also recently “canceled” by ‘SNL’ after partying without a mask in Tuscaloosa. His appearance on the show Saturday Night Live was taken away in condemnation of acting recklessly during the pandemic. The videos of the country singer were originally posted on TikTok, but the clips quickly spread across all social media platforms. Saturday Night Live has been following CDC protocols in an effort to keep the cast and crew safe and didn’t want to jeopardize their standing to host Wallen on their show.
Despite the many celebrities and influencers caught for setting bad examples for others, it’s important to recognize that celebrities are in a constant spotlight. They are the center of many social media apps, columns in magazines and articles. That is what fame entails.
The beauty of social media is that it can be used by all ages to share both negative and positive ideals and behaviors. Celebrities partying in Covid is clearly reprehensible because it can lead people to believe that partying during these times will have no repercussions. However, the positive ability to spread accurate information about the virus through social media can counter this. In order to end this pandemic, we need to wear our masks, stay six feet apart, and so should celebrities.