On media speculation over Depp and Heard split and it’s implication on women everywhere

There is no universe, theoretical or otherwise, in which Depp and Heard are saying any of this stuff willingly… Every molecule of star quality has been violently yanked away from Depp and Heard here. They’re sullen and slumped. They’re badly lit and shot from an unflattering angle. Their delivery is ugly and monotone. In effect, the Australian government has done to the celebrity pair what it has already done to its cigarette packaging. It’s taken something seductive and dangerous, and made it look as awful as humanly possible. It’s going to be hard to bounce back from this one.

Heard has been left with the bulk of the gruntwork here. She’s the one who has to explain the importance of the Australian ecosystem and the necessity of its biosecurity legislation, while Depp sits back and either grunts in agreement or offers tepid platitudes about the national character.

Crucially, Heard is also the one who apologises. And, just as crucially, she does it alone.

-Stuart Heritage, Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s video is a terrifying insight into state mind control, The Guardian

Afterward though Depp redeems their Australia situation on the Jimmy Kimmel show, with Kimmel joking that his apology might be “his greatest performance ever”:

When Kimmel asked him who wrote the script, Depp replied in deadpan albeit loaded humor, “a genius”.

It is heartbreaking when two beautiful married people fight and their once-love falls apart. It is also anger-causing when their fight is taken up by media in order to spill to the public – in these times the global public – to speculate on.

Then again Depp and Heard are not normal couple. They’re global celebrities.

But celebrity or not as demonstrated again in this situation, it’s often the woman who first gets to be painted in black. Following the supposedly TRO on Depp, initial public reaction was that Heard is after Depp’s USD400M fortune all along. To substantiate this “fact”, Heard’s “dire financial situation” was immediately published to the extent that everyone outside of the court now “knows” that the actress spends USD300 on laundry. That’s unnecessary information to the public.

 

Who are or should be privy to the couple’s truths? Not the global public for sure. The truth remains within Depp’s and Heard’s circle. And right now, even the couple’s words to each other or to the media are taken over by their legal teams.

In any case, these mortifying information, true or not, but nonetheless heavily biased against women, sustain the stereotypes placed on women since Eve: gold diggers, spenders, etcetera. These continue to hurt women everywhere and continue to mar their image. This significantly sets back global goals and campaigns for women and girls, because for one even when we work to put all girls in school but if the environment outside the school when they step out of the school essentially remains as before i.e. oppressive to the gender the tendency is for girls to develop coping strategies that don’t necessarily coincide with the values learned in school. In turn girls’ coping behavior are judged by their communities and the wider society as so-so. A vicious cycle.

Media, responsible ethical media, should itself draw the line to what should be made public and what should remain private. Questions it needs to raise when covering divisive issues should include the effects and impact of it’s exposures on people and institutions, whether or not such application of freedom (of the press) is actually free-ing or oppressing. In short, media need to be part of the solution and not the problem.

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