#GoldenGlobes, #TimesUp So Hollow!
I understand that an event like the Golden Globes reaches a massive amount of people as a result of its standing in popular culture. And so it would seem that making a political comment at such an entertaining ceremony would make an impression. The idea is that since the event reaches people, any activism and the reason for it would reach people, too. But my question here is how many people actually get to see this deeply into the Globes? Viewership of the ceremony this year was, after all, down 5% on 2017. How many people understand what's going on in terms of politics and activism at such an event? How many people will have seen only watered-down versions focusing on who won, or on what the stars were wearing? How many people really have access to everything the #TimesUp anti-sexual harassment campaign stands for? For the layman watching late-night news, does it mean anything that certain stars arrived with female activists as their plus-ones, or that the majority of women wore black? And if you're only into tabloids and fashion? Cue articles about hairstyle, beauty products, style...
Here are these ultra-rich people, who spend thousands on a single dress and all their accessories and make-up, attending an event that costs possibly millions of dollars, suddenly attempting to regain relevance after the #MeToo movement exposed men they worked with, admired, loved, for sexual misconduct. They've frantically launched a defence fund that will allow women in plainer professions redress if they run into trouble when reporting sexual harassment, which you can also donate to, and had pins with Time's Up printed on them to show solidarity, even though the fashion and beauty competition is certainly still fierce.See the hair and make-up on the red carpet at the #goldenglobes2018 - https://t.co/jBlCeC3LHa pic.twitter.com/4h1iDtpu0t— British Vogue (@BritishVogue) January 9, 2018
Which leads me to my second issue: they are still dressing up pretty and preening and beautifying their faces, setting the very same style and beauty standards by which women are judged throughout the world, inspiring those same ideas about what makes women sexy and beautiful, merely reinforcing stereotypes that women are only good for fashion and lookin' hot.Everyone in Hollywood is super committed to the ending of sexual harassment/assault.— Angela Night (@Angelheartnight) January 8, 2018
Especially now all it takes is a fashion statement, rather than putting your career in jeopardy by rejecting a culture of open secrets and silent endorsements.#GoldenGlobes2018
While the questions posed to female celebrities on the red carpet this year were much deeper than last year's due to the popularity of the #AskHerMore campaign, which started in 2014, and because of the protest, how many people will really know what happened? Just think about back pages of tabloids and weeklies, where a dress or look is picked out from an event with almost no context.Halle Berry in @ZMURADofficial More red carpet later on our site. #GoldenGlobes #GoldenGlobes2018 #WhyWeWearBlack #TIMESUP pic.twitter.com/Vhhxm2a8d6— Tom & Lorenzo (@tomandlorenzo) January 8, 2018
Perhaps this all comes down to my cynicism when it comes to Hollywood and privileged activism. The women who pulled the black dress move and then wore a 'Time's Up' pin have nothing to loose. They are rich beyond words and are very unlikely to face any violence as a result of their activism, unlike most women who take a stance against sexual harassment or abuse. They are already in places of power as some of the best actresses in the world. Wearing an LBD would not have been a fashion disaster. They are still complicit in this world of $600 gift bags, of sponsored beauty products and dresses, of style stars. It feels a bit disingenuous, even though I know they are not as separated from the normal world as us.Also, how has Hollywood's dark secret remained so for so many years? I certainly don't wish to diminish their personal experiences of harassment, but why was there this culture of silence? How did some people never hear rumours? Never see things happening?
But I suppose that is the nature of the beast: power begets fear begets silence. Well, I suppose at least their fund intends making it safer for women to speak out now...
Forgive me for being cynical.
12/01/2018: Seal has claimed that Oprah Winfrey was aware of Harvey Weinstein's abuses. Sure, she heard the rumours but didn't believe they were true.