author: annie trussler | op-ed editor
This laziness is the problem with identifying feminism with cis-het women strictly because they have a vagina.
Until just last week, I defended Natalie Portman. I honestly believed that my Jackie Kennedy, my Padme Amidala, my Black Swan could do no wrong, but alas, Hollywood continues to betray the weak-hearted. I learned that Portman had once signed a petition of sorts to keep rapist Roman Polanski out of jail, and all my faith shattered. Bummer.
It is for this reason that I cannot help but to roll my eyes at this hyper feminist Golden Globes buzz. For those of you who don’t know, Natalie Portman chose to make a snide comment about how the Best Director category was populated entirely by men. White feminists roared with applause, and thereby proclaimed Natalie Portman as Woke Queen of the year. I would have agreed three weeks ago until I ran into a post. This post linked me to an article detailing Portman’s support of known pedophile Roman Polanski.
This is the problem with surface-level feminism. This laziness is the problem with identifying feminism with cis-het women strictly because they have a vagina. I hear people proclaiming a brand new wave of feminism emerging, but all I seem to see is merely a resurgence of the Second Wave.
To be fair, a lot of this support comes from young girls between the ages of 11-15 – or, the period I like to refer to as the “excusable white feminist phase.” This is when little feminist younglings begin to realize they deserve to be treated like human beings. They are exposed to low-level feminism via Facebook and Instagram, so, therefore, I can’t really blame them. Most, if not all of us, eventually grow into leftist, feminist, anarcho-communists. Maybe I shouldn’t hurry the process.
This quandary, then, begs a different question: does this not make me lazy? If I stop calling out the imperfections in the system, am I then failing the movement I have avowed myself to? Things like this keep me awake at night.
I have concluded my responsibility is to correct wrongs where I see them, despite the need for growth in young feminists. Women should learn to correct misogynistic behavior early in life before they are persuaded to believe it to be warranted. Women must be taught to be strong and resilient from birth, lest society sink its teeth into vulnerable psyches.
I’ll admit that the fact I must think so militantly about someone’s upbringing is a touch disheartening. I’ve come to realize all non-male identifying people must feel this way – we always make sure our keys are between our fingers, we still have a hand on our mace, we always have an emergency number “just in case.” This militancy does not come from inherent anger toward or against men, but instead a fear of pain we don’t understand or deserve.
With all of this said, Natalie Portman did not do anything revolutionary. Revolution begins by denying and outing pedophiles, not supporting their artistic careers. I will be the first to admit that no longer worshipping Padme Amidala has been hard for me, but I am willing to make any sacrifice if it means spiting Roman Polanski.