Like many people, I was disheartened today when I heard the news that Angelina Jolie had filed for divorce from Brad Pitt. What a lovely couple they were! It's always a shame when two people who were once so clearly in love lose their way — it kind of makes the rest of us take stock in our own relationships and reevaluate what really matters.
To me, that means not wasting one more minute withholding the way you feel for someone. Only, when I think of reaching out to someone across the dark chaos of the world, I imagine doing so with empathy and heart. Carpe diem, you know?
Never in a million years could I imagine being someone who, upon hearing of Jolie and Pitt's split, would feel compelled to go out of their way to spew vitriol at another human being. But that's precisely what is happening to Marion Cotillard, thanks to a bunch of unfounded rumors that she may have had an affair with Pitt that could have cost him his marriage.
Turning to Cotillard's social media, people have begun leaving hateful, awful comments since the news of Jolie and Pitt's divorce broke this morning.
"She is a bitch."
"I hate you."
"YOU ARE A DISGRACE!! YOU ARE A DISGRACE!! How dare you have an affair with a married man who has a beautiful family!!! Angelina Jolie is AMAZING with all she's done & continues to do with charities & adopting children & you swoop your slutty ass in & wave it in Brad's face. SHAME ON YOU!! I HOPE YOUR CAREER TANKS! I USED to respect/like you!"
"You're nothing Infront (sic) of Angelina. You f***ing whore."
And that is just a small cross-section of the pejorative language being hurled in Cotillard's direction in supposed defense of Jolie.
I can be frank with you, right? If you are sending these kinds of comments to Cotillard (or even entertaining the idea), Cotillard is not the problem. You are the problem. Because if you're trolling Cotillard, it says a lot more about your character than hers.
There are honestly so many levels of this issue to dissect, it's hard to know where to begin. But, for starters, let's talk about the fact that anything you have currently read about Cotillard and Pitt is a rumor. Unless Cotillard and/or Pitt confirms any kind of extramarital affair, it is baseless speculation.
While I realize "innocent until proven guilty" only exists in a court of law and obviously not the court of public opinion, I would certainly hope that if I was looped into a narrative like this that people would give me the benefit of the doubt before treating me like a social pariah.
Although this next point will probably sound strange coming from an entertainment writer, it is still salient enough that it needs to be made — you don't know these people. Any of them. Yes, we become invested in the lives of our favorite celebrities. It's only natural! In a way, we invite them into our own homes and hearts every time we turn on the TV or go to the movies.
However, you do not know these people. It's one thing to appreciate and respect them from afar, but when you cross that line of trying to inject yourself into their lives on a personal level, it's time to take a step back.
Speaking of getting some perspective, how can Jolie fans be so salty toward Cotillard for the very thing Jolie was accused of doing to Jennifer Aniston when her marriage to Pitt dissolved? Pot, meet kettle.
Do you know what else is incredibly depressing about this? Most of the vitriol is coming from other women. Ladies, how do we not have each other's backs by now? If we don't, then who will? And if not now, then when? We should be lifting each other up instead of tearing each other down.
There are countless men out there who are constantly trying to justify calling us whores and bitches and sluts without any provocation. How can we possibly break down the use of these derogatory sexist remarks when we are using them as weapons against each other?
Society is hard enough on women without us turning on each other at the drop of a hat. We keep asking people to stop pitting us against each other, but at some point we have to take a long, hard look at our own actions — this reminds me of a quote from the movie Cold Mountain: "They call this war a cloud over the land, but they made the weather and then they stand in the rain and say, 'Shit, it's rainin'!"
Enough is enough is enough.
Cut Cotillard some slack. Let her stand under your proverbial umbrella for a little while. Give her shelter while this storm passes. And for goodness sake, stop being the gosh-damn rain.
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