One of the most famous actors in Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan, and I mean really, really, really famous, sort of a cross between Brad Pitt, Richard Gere, George Clooney, and Johnny Depp rolled into one, endorses a skin lightening product called Fair and Handsome on television, magazine, and billboard ads throughout India. Not skin lightening to get rid of brown spots but to make skin lighter and whiter.
When I was in India last year one of the ads I saw had Shahrukh Khan telling a lonely, unattached man that the way to get a girl was to use the skin-whitening cream he was pitching. If this lonely man had lighter skin he would get the girl of his dreams. Can you imagine? If you’re “white” enough you’ll find love!
I’ve been called a “racist” before for pointing this out, but so what: if you want to see people discussing almost imperceptible differences in skin colour in semi-public today and approving or disapproving of people based on that criterion, forget visiting a white supremacist site.
Just pick up a Toronto area South Asian newspaper and read the matrimonial classifieds…