January 10, 2011 Makeup.com TIPS & TUTORIALS

Is This MSNBC Aging Poll in Poor Taste?

Politicians are accustomed to be ranked in the polls, though usually their ratings are based on their job performance, not their looks. But today on BLTWY (a political section of MSNBC.com), a poll called "Who Aged Best? A Political Face Off" asks readers to vote on side-by-side photos of nearly a dozen famous political personalities from President Obama to Chelsea Clinton as to whether they look better today versus when they were "young" (I put young in quotes because Jenna Bush Hager, who is all of 29-years old, is among the reviewed). Readers have the option to choose whether you prefer each person “young and fun,” or think he or she looks “better with age.”
Now deliberating the physical appearances of our political figures in the press is certainly nothing new—after all, Jacqueline Kennedy became a style icon and her son John was later crowned People Magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive." And if this poll had been conducted by, say, Perez Hilton, it probably wouldn't have caught my attention. But should a major news network such as MSNBC be scrutinizing our leaders and their families in what is essentially a "Hot or Not" contest?
Not to mention, the wording of the poll is rather trite: Are we really still of the belief that only young people are "fun," or, as the introductory text suggests, that women don't age as gracefully as men?
What do you think of this poll? Is it harmless fun or unbecoming of a major news source?


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