Celebrities, teachers are people, too

By Kim Randall

“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.” These are the words of author Donald Miller, and they hold quite a bit of truth.

Have you ever found yourself getting caught up more so in what a person is thought to represent rather than who they actually are?

Generally when this happens, certain expectations follow.

For example, often times when there is a celebrity whom we adore and idolize, we place them much higher as if they aren’t the same as us: human. Beyoncé’s fans refer to her “Beysus” and fans of Lady Gaga have been known to call her “Godga.” If that isn’t extreme enough, these celebrities are constantly criticized and condemned for every little thing they do. In actuality, they’re just the same as us (except famous). Does fame, high position, status or even age truly dictate the people they are and should be perceived as?

The same argument can be made for those with whom we cross paths every day, like professors. Many look at professors and see only their position or title. Students are quick to put them on a level that is much higher, forgetting they too are just like everyone else. While they may be in a position where they are to be held accountable for certain things, one must still remember even they can mess up.

I know I am no stranger to this. Let a professor mess up a grade of mine or present something that is a bit biased or that I know isn’t the right answer, and I am the first person to jump all over them; however, then I also realize that even though they are professors, they are not invincible. They do not hold all of the answers (though we would probably like to believe so), and though they may possess degrees, they too have bad or off days. Such occurrences do not make them any less as people, but in fact speaks to their mortal existence.

This is exactly why nobody should be placed on pedestals where they are held accountable for upholding morals, values and expectations they don’t always meet. This isn’t fair to the person nor is it fair to those who have reflected these ideals upon another. Let’s face it—no one is perfect. Besides, putting people on pedestals often only leads to disappointment for those who have held these high beliefs. I mean, how many times can you count that a person has lived up to your expectations? What happens when they fall short of those expectations?

Instead of building someone up to be much more than what meets the eye, we should just come to accept them for whom and what they are. Until we are able to humanize people, pedestals shall continue to be filled with deception, false pretenses and great turmoil rather than reflections of genuine qualities of a person’s true nature.

We have to realize that people are just people. No one is above anything or anyone.