Why we Need More Stars Like Lena Dunham and Gautam Gambhir

The title is quite an odd combination, right? Lena Dunham is an American actress while Gautam Gambhir is an Indian Cricketer. They are both definitely stars in their own fields. Lena Dunham is famously known for being the creator and star of the HBO series ‘Girls’. While Gautam Gambhir is definitely known for his nail-biting performance during the 2011 world cup.These two stars have grabbed eyeballs and taken over the media in the past week. Pictures of both the stars surfaced online which definitely made it to ‘the statement of the week’. Two different avatars, two different issues, two different personalities but one definite goal- to speak and act upon key issues.

The Supreme Court of India recently decriminalized section 377. While there were celebrations all across the country, a picture of Gautam Gambhir wearing a dupatta and adorning a bindi surfaced. While he may not be seen on the ground very often, he has been quite vocal about helping the transgender community. He was spotted in that look as he came in to support the community celebrating ‘Hijra Habba’. According to news reports, the Hijra Habba is an annual event collaborated with Alliance India, supporting the cause of better health. As a part of their activity, Gambhir actively adorned the look. While this was indeed a small gesture, it definitely had a huge impact on people. He had earlier tweeted pictures of him getting rakhi tied by transgenders.

At the same time, Lena Dunham is trending for another reason altogether. She posted a nude picture of hers on her Instagram to fight against body-shaming. She did it to directly show her anger over ‘Revolve’, a fashion brand that she previously endorsed. A picture on the brand’s Instagram page had a model wearing a hoodie on which was a line that read ‘being fat is not beautiful, it’s an excuse’. This picture received flak from its audience. Many models and stars outrightly expressed anger over this issue as well. Lena posted a nude picture with one part of her caption saying “I’d rather go naked than promote exclusivity.” The actress had also asked her followers to comment their favorite designers who were inclusive. Her immediate action towards this issue was appreciated by all.

Both the instances show how people in an influencing position can use their platform to talk about key issues that haunt many of us. These two incidents of the past week are an incredible message to all those who take their positions for granted and use it for filling their own coffers. It’s not always about promoting brands and products, rather it is about promoting things that can have a huge impact on your audience. Realising one’s responsibility is a key factor. We see advertisements where stars who are fitness freaks promote something as unhealthy as chips. It’s hilarious and funny but at the same time talks a lot about the star endorsing products that he or she doesn’t actually use.

Things are definitely changing. We see a good number of stars being vocal about issues. Having the ‘perfect look’ and ‘looking beautiful’ in a certain way is something that is being promoted everywhere but we do have people like Sonam Kapoor who uploads pictures of herself wearing correctors and concealers. She has also in fact stressed upon this in many of her interviews. There was also a video of Sachin Tendulkar asking people on the rounds to wear helmets while driving. A lot of stars are definitely using their stature to talk about key issues but this can certainly improve by leaps and bounds.

It’s also not always regarding talking about issues but rather about implementing them. Everybody can talk about issues, say what’s right and wrong but the catch comes only when one has to implement it. That way both Lena and Gambhir have definitely made a statement by their actions. In a country like India where people have a ‘worship culture’ towards their idols and stars, speaking and taking actions by these stars will definitely impact the people of the society. People get influenced in terms of their hair cut, clothing, looks, food and even political inclination of their favorite stars. In a situation like this, using one’s platform to address prevailing issues is imperative and it’s time the stars pulled up their socks.

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