TV show host Ellen DeGeneres made an impassioned – and blatantly hypocritical – speech recently on her program condemning sexual harassment. And then she went on to do what she condemned.
Sexual harassment occurs when one person chooses to sexually objectify another person. And in a tweet, DeGeneres shared a photo of herself and singer Katy Perry with DeGeneres’ jaw wide open and gawking directly at Perry's breasts. To complete the hypocritical gesture, DeGeneres included this caption:
“Happy birthday, @KatyPerry! It’s time to bring out the big balloons!”
The real question now is how would DeGeneres have responded if it were a man who did exactly what she did – taking a photo posing with his jaw wide open and head gawking into the breasts of another woman?
How would DeGeneres react if it were a man making the same comments, calling a woman’s breasts “big balloons?” She would no doubt be one of the first people to publicly condemn such an action as being sexist and harassment.
“This is not a male thing or a female thing, it is not a Hollywood thing or a political thing, this is a human thing and it happens in the workplace, it happens in families, it happens all over the world and we are all the same,” she said on her TV show in a monologue discussing sexual harassment. “We all want the same thing, we want respect, love and kindness. And if I could have those three things and an iPhone X, I would be complete.”
So how does DeGeneres justify her sexist action?
Is it because she's a woman and she thinks that it's okay for one woman to objectify another woman's body?
Is it because DeGeneres believes that since she is a lesbian she can objectify or make sexual comments about another woman's body?
If you are going to be a social justice warrior Ellen, then you must also be the example. You cannot just bandy words around and argue against sexual harassment, calling for love, respect and kindness for all humans when you are actually the one engaging in the very thing you condemn.
It is exactly these sorts of behaviors that lead the general public to become so exhausted and disgusted by the hypocrisy of Hollywood.
Ellen, don't use an anti-sexual harassment campaign to build yourself up or to widen your audience or to gain more ratings. Do it because you believe in it. And if you believe in it then maintain your integrity and be consistent in your actions. At the very least, you could own up to your sexist actions, apologize and learn from your own mistakes.