Our appearance is emerging in legal disputes as a new kind of discrimination.
‘Lookism’, it is claimed, is the new racism, and should be banished from civilised societies.
After several court actions in the United States, some experts are voicing their concerns on cases that should be considered here too.
Economist Daniel Hamermesh is suggesting that ugly people deserve legal protection from their own appearance, as he believes ugliness is no different from race or a disability.
‘My research shows being good-looking helps you earn more money, find a higher-earning spouse and even get better deals on mortgages,’ he said.
‘Some people are born ugly and there’s not much they can do about it. You’re pretty much stuck with your looks.
‘People who appear to be conventionally beautiful have fewer barriers to workplace success,’ he said. ‘However, protecting conventionally ugly people or offensively linking that condition to a disability would take society in the wrong direction.’
In a most recent case, Shirley Ivey, 61, is suing her former employer for 'lookism'. Ivey, left her job after her supervisor told her that he would like her more if she was prettier.
More often than not it seems qualities outrank skill, intelligence or character pay off.
Here's an example. Anna Kournikova is ranked 37th in women's tennis, and has never won a major singles championship. So, why is it that Kournikova makes millions more dollars from endorsements than players ranked higher? You decide.What are your thoughts on the new kind of discrimination 'lookism?'