Body Modification – Matt Pham

Our society is obsessed with outward appearance, especially since plastic surgery is now normal. In 2006, there were over 11 million cosmetic procedures in America alone, which cost over 11 billion dollars (http://www.forbes.com/health/2007/10/09/health-surgery-risks-forbeslife-cx_mlm_1010health.html). This will only serve to devalue beauty in the long run, since, to quote Pixar’s The Incredibles, “When everyone’s super… no one will be.” When enough people get plastic surgery, society’s image of beauty will be pretty much expected, and the rest of us without plastic surgery will suffer for it. I’m not sure about the validity of it, but I came across an article that stated Australia’s navy was using taxpayer dollars to have breast enhancements.

Darling Point plastic surgeon Kourosh Tavakoli told The Sunday Telegraph the navy had paid for two officers, aged 25 and 32, to have breast-augmentation surgery at his private clinic.

Dr Tavakoli said the women had not been injured but claimed to suffer “psychological” problems.

“I’ve had two female officers who have got the navy to pay for breast augmentation for psychological reasons,” he said.

“I know for a fact two patients claimed it back on the navy. They (the navy) knew it was breast augmentation and paid for it.

“I don’t know why they pay for it. There’s no breast augmentation, that I know of, for medical purposes. You’ve got to be fair to yourself.”

A Defence spokesman admitted cosmetic surgery occurred at “public expense” when there were “compelling psychological/psychiatric reasons”, but refused to say how many such cases were taxpayer-funded.

Skin color and facial structure do not determine how well a person can ride on horseback, or shoot a bow. The Body Worlds exhibit shows us that we are more than just our skin, as we often seem to forget. We are “position, size, shape, and structure of skeleton, muscles, nerves, and organs,” and each of those parts contributes to our distinctiveness as individuals (http://www.bodyworlds.com/en/exhibitions/mission_exhibitions.html).

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,22424066-2,00.html

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