EDITORIAL: Taking fandom to extremes can lead to dangerous outcomes

With celebrities such as Jesse McCartney, Tony Hawk and Mason Ramsey making their way to Nacogdoches, everyone is starting to get excited. However, with these celebrities coming to town, it raises the question – why do we get so excited? Why do we go out in the cold and scream over Jesse McCartney or go to Banita to see a child sing? Considering the motives behind these interactions with celebrities, and how far we will go to see them, raises the question: is this OK?

Although the act of having celebrity idols or crushes is not bad, the extent to which some people will take it can be dangerous. Stars such as Selena Gomez and Gigi Hadid have had to add extra measures to protect themselves from stalkers. In 2013, some fans of popstar Justin Bieber engaged in self harm after being provoked by a fake 4chan hoax.

There was even a documentary about the lengths One Direction fans would go for the band, doing things like stealing underwear, tracking room numbers and, in one case, even hacking into airport cameras to watch them wait for a flight.

While the argument, “They are just fans, it is all harmless,” is useable in some cases, when people harass someone in the media or alter their life for them is when it has become dangerous. 

Because we live in a very social media-heavy society, it becomes a constant way to be connected with your favorite star. This can also open up the possibility to learn more about them through Twitter, Instagram posts and Reddit AMA’s – which is not bad.

However, studying these ways of communication to learn how to look, act and even eat like your hero is not the healthiest thing to do. Many websites have food diaries where you can learn what celebrities eat, such as Jennifer Lopez or Kim Kardashian- West. 

The way this can be dangerous is when you try to eat like a celebrity who has a different body type and chemistry than you, it can harm you. Celebrities like Ariana Grande, LeAnn Rimes or Keira Knightley who have spoken out about their fast metabolisms may be able to eat more or less than the average person.

Being a fan in its most basic sense is safe and fine; however, going to extremes for a celebrity is when it can be bad. When people try and change their bodies and their personalities for someone who they don’t know, it is dangerous.

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