Why Chrissy Teigen Needs To Do More Than Just Apologize
The self-professed “Queen of Twitter” who is well known for epic clapbacks and ill-timed tweets about luxurious things like boob surgeries in the middle of the devastation of a global pandemic is once again weathering a rather ugly scandal that exposes why all trolls don’t look alike.
Not too long ago, Teigen made her dramatic exit from the platform of her addiction, citing the inability to function in a space that was wired against her best intentions.
This isn’t the first time the Sports Illustrated model and wife of famed crooner John Legend has made the abrupt decision to leave Twitter in a huff, after being subjected to an army of disapprovers, who never skip the chance to shame the mother of two for her often times shameless plugs that come off as inherently tone-deaf.
Teigen has taken “breaks” to recover from the sporadic dragging sessions that reoccur as reminders from those who don’t forget. She’s never gone for long. The last episode that saw her unequivocally announce her permanent break from Twitter, resulted in her triumphant return a mere two week later, a testament to how the cookbook author is helplessly hooked on social media.
Her ongoing battles, stemming from a blast from the past, makes you wonder if Chrissy Teigen is still what she describes her former self to be — “insecure, attention seeking troll.”
That confession was included in the apology she issued in response to the resurrected tweets and DMs that Teigen directed at a then-16-year-old Courtney Stodden, a model and reality star, whose scandalized marriage to a much-older actor sparked a dirty controversy back in 2011.
After days-long campaign on Twitter by those who felt compelled to extend Stodden’s statement about Teigen’s dramatic departure from Twitter, that had something to do with being the target of nonstop trolling, the very same tactic Stodden accuses Teigen of exacting on her — the viral nature of the trending item compelled a call to action.
Teigen didn’t deny the fact that she had trolled Stodden back in 2011, when her impressionable target was just a teenager, who had no business being on Twitter because of the high risk of falling prey to what her more formidable foe was emboldened to dish out.
Turns out fame, fortune and a massive fan base can inspire abominable tendencies, leading to threatening DMs that certainly break the rules and policies of a platform designed for chaos.
To be fair, Teigen wasn’t yet married to her superstar husband at the time she sent those nasty tweets and DMs to Stodden, but she was an established model and media personality with a growing fanbase, and a lot more influence compared to the subject of her disdain.
Encouraging a 16-year-old girl to take “a dirt nap” while sending private DMs suggesting she kill herself is the very definition of what a troll does best, and Chrissy Teigen’s apologetic stance is not nearly enough to compensate for her track record of damaging behavior that could’ve resulted in the worst case scenario.
True to form, Teigen blames being young and stupid for her documented inhumanness and implies in her apology that she’s no longer that person. She always strives to improve herself and deliver joy for the sake of her fanbase that she can’t bear to let down.
Teigen claims she has tried to reach out to Stodden privately but hasn’t been successful, which might be due to the fact that the Teigen is still blocking the user she was trolling, back when she was able to verbally abuse a teenager without getting suspended.
Obviously, as sincere as Teigen would like to appear to the masses to assuage the mounting hostility from energized critics on the platform she can’t forsake, no matter how many times she tries, it’s hard not to be suspicious, especially since she was coerced into taking accountability for her deplorable actions.
It’s not like Teigen decided on her own to call herself out for the unspeakable brutality she exacted on a minor, who didn’t deserve to be told to consider suicide by the mean-spirited wife of an A-lister. She basically has no choice but to swiftly orchestrate damage control in order to prevent further erosion to her already embattled brand.
This is exactly why Chrissy Teigen needs to do a lot more than the broad strokes of the “sincere apology” that contains all the ingredients of saying the right things at a time when it matters more for you than your wronged victim.
We are in the middle of Mental Health Awareness month, and if the burgeoning TV personality truly wants to make amends and illustrate what a difference a decade makes in the maturity of evolving minds, perhaps she can seize this opportunity in the spotlight to speak up against cyberbullying, particularly against youngsters, who are more prone to its downsides.
Teigen has made disparaging comments online about even child actor Quvenzhané Wallis, whom she called “cocky” in a tweet during the 2013 Oscars.
“I am forced to like Quvenzhané Wallis because she’s a child right?” “Okay fine.”
Granted, Teigen has the right to publicly voice her irritation over a 9-year-old Black girl’s scheduled appearance at the biggest televised event in the world, based on the child actor’s own merit and genius, but the question is, why would any adult want to?
Whatever character traits Chrissy Teigen possesses that forced her to be an active troll back in the day, way before “cancel culture” became our tool of immediate obliteration, needs to be taken into account by the guilty as charged in her quest to atone for what could be described as unforgivable.
Saying sorry is one thing, but actions speak louder than words
Teigen should educate herself on why words do kill, particularly the harsh ones that aim to intimidate and degrade the victim’s worthiness as a valued human who has so much to live for as a growing teen.
As a once troubled teen myself, who battled with depression and the ever present demons at my side, God only knows how I would’ve survived the realization and accessibility to the wilds of social engagement, that tends to set algorithms for the rabidness of trolls on standby.
On Teigen’s Twitter feed, we are greeted with the last thread containing the apology that stands as evidence of her acknowledgment that she was once an online bully. But on her Instagram page, it’s business as usual with homages to her unsinkable brand, and fabulous home life, without any mentions of her shit fest.
If you contribute to the beginnings of the online culture of toxicity that breeds the level of mental hysteria that has been known to end badly for unfortunate victims of trolling, then you must be part of the solution, by playing a vital role in eradicating what is definitely a lethal activity.
If A-listers can weaponize the power they wield in ways that are harmful, they have to be able to switch it up, and redirect that privilege towards the messaging that denounces past behavior and highlights the more positive and progressive alternatives.
Dear, Chrissy Teigen, the ball is in your court.