Reading the comments on a blog gives me far more insight into people than reading the blogs themselves. Sometimes during sustained silent reading time in my classes, I’ll browse CNN’s website because I don’t have enough things to depress me. I need to seek out tragedies in the world that I am neither part of nor can do anything about. People never fail to use this forum to attack and insult each other and the subjects of the articles. And of course, blame President Obama for everything. People really internalize and personalize what they read on the internet. There’s also the anonymity that often causes not only shocking lapses in grammar, but also manners.
I am a blog commenter as well as a blogger. In cyberspace, as in life, I rarely make the mistake of endeavoring to change someone’s mind about something, especially not through logic. Belief has nothing to do with logic, and whether you believe Angelina Jolie is a homewrecker or a saint, you are not going to have your belief altered by the well-chosen words of another commenter.
That sure doesn’t stop other people from trying though! Today, I was reading some comments on www.celebitchy.com about Angelina Jolie. Johnny Depp compared her to Elizabeth Taylor in an interview. I wonder if the comparison to a famous celebrity homewrecker was intentional. According to the comments, I wasn’t the only one who noticed. What got me to thinking were the comments that vehemently defended Angie against insinuations of homewrecking and attacked the commenters who brought it up. One person even wrote that the news of Angie’s homewrecking was “so old.”
I don’t think that’s why Ms. Angelina Voight escapes the homewrecker moniker. I’m not sure why or how she does it. It’s been way longer since Julia Roberts started dating a still-married Danny Moder, and blog commenters still throw the homewrecker slur at her, despite the fact that she and Moder have been married for years and have three children together (even boy-girl twins like the sainted Angelina). Do NOT bring up Alicia Keys or Leann Rimes on certain celeb gossip sites or you will be howled out of the room by the shrieking of “whore!” Some women, though, escape the stigma. Clare Danes, for example. Billy Crudup left seven months pregnant Mary Louise Parker for Danes, and nobody cares. It hasn’t hurt her career a smidge. I’m assuming she does the eyelash commercials because she loves the product, not because she needs the money. Or because that company has YouTube footage of her playing Scrabble with Satan.
Tori Spelling’s books always make the bestseller list. See my blog titled “Bitches I Hate” if you want to know how I feel about that. Her irresistible platinum good looks had Dean McDermott leaving his wife, son and infant daughter inside of a month. It actually revived her career. Not just revived it, because she really was never that big of a star.
And let’s talk about Elizabeth Taylor. She’s an icon almost as famous for her failed marriages as for her body of work in film. But she’s also Hollywood Royalty, and no one would dare call her a homewrecking slut (although I suspect Debbie Reynolds probably has on numerous occasions). What makes a woman who has had an affair with a married man either a Jolie/Taylor or a Keyes/Rimes? Is it beauty? Bankability? Does it have something to do with the man? Eddie Fisher was as big a star as her, so people accepted the pairing, perhaps. Many people considered Brad Pitt way too pretty for Jennifer Aniston, not to mention too big a star. Maybe it was more pleasing to the public’s sensibilities to have him matched with Jolie. Undoubtedly, everyone bought the tabloid crap that Aniston was denying Pitt the joys of fatherhood because of her selfish MANLY ambition. All the poor guy wanted was a baby, you harpy! He cried about it on Oprah! Jolie made him a father of six in four years flat. Hell, she was pregnant with his child before the divorce was even final. And wives still buy magazines with her on the cover, take her picture to their plastic surgeons, and see her movies.
All wives are fearful and suspicious of the vixen we believe will slink into our husbands’ lives and seduce him away from us and our children. She’ll be younger than us, prettier than us, thinner than us, and sexier than us. She’ll cast a spell over our husbands that we have no power to undo. I spend a lot of time around married men. Most male teachers are married. For some reason, the profession seems to attract family men. Some married men put out a vibe that they are available. Most do not. Sure, they flirt. Yes, they absolutely look. And I’m not saying that there aren’t Rachel Uchitels out there, trolling for other women’s husbands, but most women want single men. If they end up snaring a husband on their line, it’s because he was looking to be caught. The myth of the maneater persists, however.
Another myth that I get sick of reading on gossip blogs is “once a cheater, always a cheater.” I will concede that the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior, and that if a man has cheated on you, he is likely to cheat on you again. But I do not believe that if a person, male or female, has cheated in a relationship, that person is destined to cheat in every relationship in the future. People do change and grow. People do regret their mistakes and endeavor to avoid making them again. The platitudes are so predictable. “If he’ll do it with you, he’ll do it to you.” “Karma’s a bitch.” “What goes around comes around.” All of these sayings have truth in them, but again, I think human behavior cannot be simplified like this. If we were all destined to repeat our mistakes forever, there would be no hope for addicts of any kind. Women who leave abusive relationships would have no hope of ever finding a loving, kind man. People who make mistakes would be lost causes and no one would deserve second chances.
And we all deserve a second chance.
Everyone except that Angelina Jolie tramp.