Another season of Bad Girls Club has started. My desire to play amateur psychiatrist and social pundit is strong (I should have been a shrink), and Bad Girls Club is too much to resist. This is Human Zoo TV. These women are horrible, make horrible decisions, act horrible, and don't realize what they are doing and how they are acting leads to their problems. What is scary is not just their behavior, but that this behavior is portrayed positively as if they are empowered. What is scary is that other young women in America watch this show and identify with them, consider them people to look up to and want to be that way in their lives. Watching this show, I finally understand some of the previously perplexing things about modern human nature.
The first key into the lock moment was that these women are near 'wild' in behavior. Feral is not the true term as feral means they were domesticated but turned wild. These women are truly wild; no domestication process has happened. They have little to no future time orientation. They can't read other humans. Every slight can turn into a physical altercation. They mate quickly with selection being proximity and basic physical attraction. They have no idea that the world around them does not care. They do not understand decorum and manners. They are like wild dogs that you do not adopt when you have kids. Extrapolating this out from BGC, many prole women (low socioeconomic class) exhibit some of these behaviors. They might not do them to the degree or in complete combination as the BGC women, but they exhibit behaviors that as short as 40 years ago would be shocking or at the least shameful. There is the twist though, there is no shame after their actions or statements.
The second a-ha moment centered around that odd conundrum that has vexed some modern social scientists where low class women have higher levels of self-esteem or positive body image feelings than women of higher socioeconomic class. This a-ha moment coincided with a 2nd insight into why do low class women turn the smallest slights (usually around respect) into physical fights that could land them in jail. Someone might brush by you and you think "jerk" but move on with your life. Bump shoulders with these women (the men do it, too), and someone is going to end up bruised. The entire high self esteem wrap and quick defense of any slight is because they have no true accomplishments, no wealth, little ability, and are nobody with no futures, so any slight or 'dis' if not defended to allow for the avalanche of criticism, revealing what a loser they are. It is all a front. They have to lie to themselves all of the time that they are awesome and all that while vigilantly defending their facade because it is a shell. They must constantly keep their rep up because once one dis is allowed, then all of the true things about them (poor health, no money, little ability, etc.) would be ammunition to destroy their falsified status in their minds and in front of their loved ones.
These women, and their fans are just a symptom of a sick society. Glorifying the odd and troubled, even if there are Human Zoo TV viewers like me, is not a healthy culture. This might sound like hyperbole, but this show is Oxygen's highest rated show. It has more than 1 million viewers each episode. I have yet to see a boycott called by women's groups or even the NAACP as women and especially women of color are constantly shown in the worst light. It might sound dramatic, but even if one life is changed for the worse due to this show, it is a problem.