This is a welcome change of pace from our intellectual betters in the entertainment business. Iconic actress Meryl Streep is making headlines as she promotes the second season of HBO’s Big Little Lies. She’s had enough of the frequent use of the term “toxic masculinity”.
Streep participated in a panel discussion with co-stars Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Laura Dern hosted by Vanity Fair. Kidman told a story about a male fan who approached her to tell her how much he enjoyed the show. The show has a mostly female cast, with all the lead characters being female. Streep, the newest cast member, spoke up and interjected that she was happy to hear that. Then she said it’s wrong to label only one gender as toxic, as in “toxic masculinity.”
“Sometimes, I think we’re hurt. We hurt our boys by calling something toxic masculinity. I do. And I don’t find [that] putting those two words together … because women can be pretty f—ing toxic,” Streep said. “It’s toxic people. We have our good angles and we have our bad ones. I think the labels are less helpful than what we’re trying to get to, which is a communication, direct, between human beings. We’re all on the boat together. We’ve got to make it work.”
That is quite a bold admission from Streep, as logical as it is to most people. In the age of #MeToo and Year of the Woman and all the other nods to female empowerment, it is refreshing for a mature woman to say, hey, women can be toxic, too. I mean, who hasn’t known mean girls, especially during school days?
Streep is a long-time advocate for women but often walks a fine line between feminist and what she prefers to be referred to, as a humanist.
Streep is one of Hollywood’s most visible and impassioned champions of women’s rights. She is a spokeswoman for the National Women’s History Museum, and in 2015 announced she was funding a screenwriters’ lab for female writers over 40.
A mother of three daughters and one son, Streep in 2015 rejected the label “feminist” in favour of being described as a humanist. The same year she cameoed as Emmeline Pankhurst in the film Suffragette and, while promoting the film, drew attention to the scarcity of female film critics on the aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes – which has since adjusted its criteria.
Meryl Streep is a founding member of the #TimesUp initiative that originated in Hollywood. #TimesUp is an offshoot of the #MeToo movement. Three hundred Hollywood female elites, including actresses, writers, producers, directors, agents, and executives, came together to raise money for a legal defense fund to provide support for women in the real world against sexual harassment in the workplace.
Reaction to Streep’s remarks isn’t all favorable, which is no surprise. The woke crowd will not tolerate any opinion that introduces common sense disagreement to liberal groupthink. One writer at Jezebel, a popular site for liberal young women, took Streep to the woodshed. She must not know the meaning of toxic masculinity, you see, if she doesn’t appreciate the term. How condescending of her. The young woman lecturing a 69-year-old feminist, er, humanist, on a term that denigrates men in our society simply for exhibiting masculine traits shows her own ignorance. She’ll not realize that, though, riding up there on her high horse. Meanwhile, the rest of us in the land of normal people applaud a public figure who takes a stand on behalf of our sons and husbands because for too long they have been the scapegoats of a feminist agenda that’s outlived its expiration date. Promoting female empowerment and protecting women in the workplace is admirable. Blaming the woes of the world on men is not.