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Right now Patricia Arquette is getting her fundament chewed on Twitter for allegedly having ignored "intersectionality" in her speech. She wasn't fronting for an organization or issuing a position paper; she was making heartfelt remarks. People need to get a life.

Velvet Goldmine

I agree with the first paragraph up above, but there doesn't have to be a "but" after it, despite your tribulations on Twitter. In this particular case, a little scolding of Penn was merited.

I have watched in dismay when truly virulent accusations befall the innocuous, as with Lena Dunham being labeled a pedophile. But this was an in-passing Oscar moment that essentially got an in-passing wrist-slap.

Sean Penn gets away with an awful lot, and a little "sidebar, your honor" tweeting was a reasonable response that needn't detract from the actual win. If Lance Mannion can take in both Penn's gaffe AND the director's moving speech, why assume Penn's critics didn't as well?

I don't think many of his "scolds" assumed that he wasn't making an in-joke or that he really is anti-immigration. Rather, they knew that the jab wouldn't land on the award recipient, but instead on the most vulnerable people who have to live with these taunts every day.

Tweets like those of Jose Antonio Vargas are completely valid, and say it best:
“I've traveled to 45 states and heard people say 'illegal' and 'Mexican' interchangeably. That's why green card joke was tone deaf #Oscars”

velvet goldmine

JD, it was actually her backstage remarks, which went a bit of the rails. But as I said to what I suppose could be termed scolds, her heart was in the right place and she is a bit of a rambler.


I know, people throwing out "intersectionality" is unintentional gold.


I get tired of this stuff too. Slate was even going after the "stay weird" speech guy because he ISN'T gay so for some reason that means he can't have felt marginalized and suicidal as a teen or something. The endless parsing and the "you aren't x, y and z in the exact same way I am so you can't say anything about a" is getting out of hand.


I think that people don't want a narrative like "it was a poor time and place for that joke, but that doesn't mean Penn is a bad person nor even that he and Iñárritu aren't friends with a lot of respect for each other." I didn't have any of the context for the joke, but me and a couple friends agreed (privately) that it was in poor taste, and that was that. So I appreciated seeing the background here, and Lance's rejoinder I think is a more elegant way of saying "hey, glass houses, people."

There's a paraphrased Faulkner quote that I keep on my desk. I apply it to writing, but it works for this too: "Don't bother being better than others. Be better than yourself." (In the original form it's much more specifically about writing and is less pithy and elegant.)

Also I wanted you to call this post "Twitter, or (The Unexpected Ignorance of Virtue)."

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