Kate Moss: Role Model?

This is the new cover of Bazaar magazine that arrived on my doorstep yesterday.  See the model?  That’s Kate Moss.  Is she pretty?  I suppose so.  Is she a role model?
That’s what I’m about to debate.
I would say no, absolutely not.  There are plenty of media that tout her as the darling of the fashion world and every little girl should want to grow and be just like her.  After all she’s got millions of dollars, a fashion line (with Topshop in the UK), she’s a runway model, who wouldn’t want to be just like her?
If you want to be just like her you’d better start doing some coke.  And no, I don’t mean the Coca Cola variety.  It’s well publicized that she’s been in and out of rehab.  You can Yahoo search it yourself or click this link to see the results.
The day she left rehab in 05 her agency issued this statement:

The Storm agency said Moss would be working on modeling assignments in Los Angeles, Paris and New York in the next month.

Okay.  So that proves you can get caught snorting cocaine (pictures were published in a British tabloid which is the reason she went to rehab) and do a quick stay at a luxurious rehab joint in Arizona and be back to a three city tour modeling within a month and on a phot shoot in less than 12 days (modeling for Robert Cavalli in Italy).  Yeah, I’m weeping for you Kate.

The fact that she continues to be this sought after model astounds me.  The public doesn’t seem to care, the media doesn’t seem to care and neither do the companies she’s working for.  At the time of her stint some companies did at least care enough to stand up and say “Hey, you don’t represent our values.”  I applaud H&M, Burberry and Chanel (who ditched her when she went to rehab in 05).

It seems the SuperModel’s addiction isn’t new either.

Moss spent time in rehab in 1998 for an undisclosed addiction. (Source here: SOFTPEDIA. Caution, upper body nudity pic of Ms. Moss)

And it seems her friends are a super bad influence.  At the time of her 05 stint she was with rocker Pete Doherty.  This little ditty is from 07 where, you guessed it, she and Pete checked into rehab together.

“They arrived together and they will be supporting each other.” Doherty has attempted rehab on numerous occasions in a bid to tackle his heroin and crack cocaine habits. Moss was herself treated in 2005 after being caught on camera snorting cocaine.  (Source here: Contactmusic.)

Can someone please explain why this woman is allowed to be such an ‘icon’?  Is this what we want our children to grow up idolizing?  She even has a daughter herself (3 years old at the time of rehab in 05).  One would think she’d want to get clean and rid herself of people who are obviously bad influences for her daughters sake.
Guess not.
I found one article that at least tackled the question as to why companies continue to tout drug addicts (like Moss).

The supermodel’s fall from grace has forced a re-think on the types of role models the fashion world endorses.

It also raises questions about possible hypocrisy in an industry notorious for its drug-fuelled party life: Haute couture lovingly cultivated Moss’ bad girl image, and she now finds her career threatened with the first evidence that the image may match reality. (Source: From Fashion Model to Pariah CTV.Ca)

If she’s truly reformed then bravo for her.  In this post I’ve picked her out as an example (one that’s been bugging me for some time) but it could really apply to any celebrity addict.
So what’s your take on Ms. Moss and those drug addicts who are idolized in the press?  Should we continue to keep them in the spotlight as role models when their behavior is anything but model worthy?

15 thoughts on “Kate Moss: Role Model?

  1. I think the issue here is that you believe (or at least are implying) that the cult of celebrity equates to the responsibility of being a role model. However, just because someone is famous doesn't mean our children should endeavour to be like them. Setting aside obvious examples like Charles Manson or Bill Clinton (do we really want our boys growing up to be womanizers who are charming enough to get most people to forget that fact?), in every walk of life – famed or not – there are good and bad examples. A recent one is in football, where Drew Brees (Superbowl MVP) is an amazing humanitarian and has done more for the city of New Orleans than anyone could have expected. However, for every Brees, there is a Pacman Jones or Marvin Harrison (both were involved in shooting incidents outside clubs).And it isn't just famous people. If we try to encourage them to follow more local role models, like say a teacher or coach, for all the world-changing teachers there is still the occasional uncle bad touch out there.Ultimately, parents need to direct their children's focus when it comes to celebrity following or worship. There are good and bad examples everywhere.

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  2. Sadly, when polled, kids now days will tell you that when they grow up, they want to be famous. Whatever happened to being a doctor or a nurse, a train driver or a fire fighter?Celebrity… you can keep it, I sure don't want any. Besides, I frequently answer the door in curlers, mudpacks and PJ's… they paps would have a field day.

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  3. She is not my role model, for sure-The person I feel badly for is her daughter-what a shadow her mom must cast over her life…I do think she is very beautiful, and I see why she sells things-but not so much as a role model…You had very good points-can I say Ditto? 🙂

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  4. I agree with you. But the whole industry is a big drug party so is most of Hollywood. So the advertisers, producers, etc all look a blind eye. Its a Huge problem. And if they get caught they usually get off with a little fine or a promise to do some rehab. Its up to us parents not to galmorize these people.

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  5. I am not sure why celebrities are expected to be role models. I like what SciFi dad has to say – that it's really up to the parents to attempt to lay a foundation as to the type of behaviors our children should emulate. And then with Kate Moss…you get into that other side of emulation – in that we should all try and look like her, too. I always have to ground myself with that Dove promo – and that our girls are trying to look like “people” that don't actually exist. It's enough to wear you out!

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  6. I could care less. But to answer the question. No she shouldn't currently be a role model.People have turned from addictions to make themselves better and in turn affect others in positive ways as well.Two celebrities that pop in my mind are Drew Barrymore and Robert Downey Jr.We remember the downward spiral they were on in the early 90's. Give them a decade and and some cool action movies and you forget about their previous problems.Could that be Ms. Moss? Sure.

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  7. What SciFi Dad said. Who thinks she is a role model? She's famously anorexic. I expect to keep her and models like her way from my daughters until they go to University, when I will no longer be able to control their environments. I hope by then they will be athletic, strong and well-based in feminism and be able to find real role models, like Sanger, Roosevelt, Shaw, Galbraith- and be able to accept their flaws while celebrating their genius.

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  8. I just read something from Calvin Klein who said she has always been a nightmare to work with. ALWAYS. Yet she's been around for what, close to 20 years now? Amazing. What other profession would tolerate that?She was the start of the whole heroin chic look, so because of that alone, I must knock her off the “role model” pedestal. (That doesn't even touch upon any of the actual drug behavior.) That said, I am not into the idea of celebrities as role models either. They're entertainment, plain and simple.

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  9. It seems like after her first public outing with drugs she was cast aside for a while. But then all the sudden she was back and as sought after as ever. I guess that means Tiger will be rebounding as well!

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  10. I don't do drugs and I don't condone them. But I also won't banish someone just because they have an addiction. I had a relative who was a drug user and ended up killing themselves. It's very sad. We all wish we could have helped.Kate Moss is no role model, but what model is? I agree that advertisers should pick someone who represents their values. But I think that's most important when people “know” who they are looking at. For instance, if Tiger Woods is selling watches, we all know who Tiger is. If Kate Moss is all dolled up in a photo shoot and the ad doesn't say it's her, I may just see her as a pretty face. In that case, maybe her values aren't as important?But if they say “Here is Kate Moss for McDonalds”, then yeah, that's a poor choice.

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  11. Well said, SciFi Dad. Personally, I think too much is placed on the whole role model thing. It's not like these celebrities/athletes all go into it looking to be one and I don't think it's fair that we put all this pressure on them to conform to what we think they should be.

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  12. I totally agree with you on this! The hero worship we give celebrities, rock stars and pro athletes is ridiculous! They aren't worthy of worship. They aren't even worthy of the millions they make. They aren't saving the world.I am thankful that my boys don't have any “heros” that they try to look like, wear their jersey or emulate…except for Jesus of course! 😉

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  13. I'm really glad I have boys because a lot of the female 'role models' out there are anything but. That's not to say that there aren't women to look up to, there are loads. The problem is that the ones that are shoved in pre-teen girls' faces are just train wrecks.

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