Cheerladers are bad. There’s no other way to say it. I don’t care if they’re of color or fat or have athletic skill. Being a cheerleader means you’re the sideshow, your role is to make the main event look good; you are not and never will be the star.
Witnessing the archetype blonde haired, blue eyed, super skinny cheerleader transform to allow more diversty in movies like High School Musical only makes me sad; it’s like when Mo’ Nique hosted a reality show on a fat girl beauty contest, or when there was an African-American model on the cover of Vogue and Anna Wintour wrote a self-congratulatory Letter From the Editor about it. Is it progress that women of color get to be anorexic too? Or that fat women are allowed to compete against each other so that a panel of judges can decide who is the prettiest?
The big problem with the cheerleader role is that it serves as a teen training ground for the model of the perfect heterosexual relationship; it’s like wife school. The hot girl cheers on her talented guy, standing by her quarterback, loyally, faithfully, whether he wins or loses; her admiration is constant and her love is true.
Who doesn’t have fantasy about her partner being totally focused on her, sticking around no matter what, celebrating when she does well, cheering her up every time she’s down? We all want that. But men, the guys in power, got to actually create that reality for themselves and reproduce it everywhere.
If you watched any of the superbowl, you likely saw dueling couples: former Playboy bunny Kendra Baskett with her Indianoplois Colt husband, Hank Baskett, versus Playboy model Kim Kardashian, girlfriend of Saint, Reggie Bush. Kim proudly flashed her nails for the cameras, painted with Reggie’s name and his number, 25. Rumor has it that if Bush won, he would propose, making Kardashian a real life trophy wife.
Maybe cheerleaders will be Ok with me when there are all male squads who rally on the pro-women teams at giant sporting events watched all over the world; when those guys are considered a catch, the hyper-sexual mates for the celebrated women athletes. I wonder if Kim can play soccer?