Over the past few weeks, there have been numerous celebrity girl-on-girl kisses that were very, very public and got a lot of attention. Miley Cyrus got up close and personal with three different women during three different performances in June alone. And during the MTV Movie Awards, Sandra Bullock and Scarlett Johansson awkwardly locked lips.
Straight female celebs kissing other straight female celebs is nothing new. Ever since that Britney Spears and Madonna smooch few years ago (oh yeah, Christina Aguilera was there too), faux onstage lesbianism has increased tremendously. No matter who is doing it or where it is, I find that my reaction is always the same—simple bewilderment.This might seem like an odd response, but intimacy with someone you are not attracted to confuses me, especially when it comes from people who seem like they should be above whoring themselves out for media attention. I mean, Sandra Bullock and Scarlett Johansson are pretty serious actresses and don’t seem to crave the kind of hysterical and overdone coverage that, say, Lindsay Lohan and Katy Perry do.
No matter which straight ladies are doing the kissing, I always feel a strong desire to tap them on the shoulder and say, “Why did you do that? I’m honestly curious.” I’d be open to any answer, really, so long as it made sense. But I’d be willing to bet they’d say one of the following things:
- “For attention.” Yes, fair enough. It’s exploitative and annoying, but at least you’re being upfront about your motives.
- “Because, while I prefer men, I think women are beautiful.” Eh, I call bulls**t. Pretty much anyone can recognize and admit that certain people are attractive. But if you aren’t actually sexually into women, I doubt that you have any desire to kiss one and, therefore, I think you’re doing it for attention.
- “I’m bi.” If you’ve actually dated women, fair enough. But if not, is on stage the most logical place to explore your sexuality? No.
- “I’m an actress; it was in the script. It’s my job.” This is an interesting way to look at the whole girl-on-girl kissing thing and I bet a lot of actresses feel this way. But I wonder if they ever think about why something like this is such a big deal. It gets written into scripts and performances to garner attention and for shock value. Maybe if famous folks stopped treating gay chicks like an anomaly, we’d stop being so sexualized and shocking to the general public.
- “I’m helping the gay community by bringing visibility.” No, you are definitely are not. I’m sure you are all open-minded and down with gay peeps, but your smooches for titillation value don’t help us. If you want, speak out in favor of gay marriage and equal rights, or perform at a gay club or pride parade. That would be awesome. But just because you aren’t a homophobe doesn’t mean you need to pretend to be gay to prove it. I’ll appreciate your support even if you’re straight.
The Miley Cyrus kisses are another issue entirely. People totally freaked out about them and the singer had an opportunity to call out those who were reacting badly and question why everyone was so upset. But she didn’t do that. Instead, Cyrus posted this on her blog:
“I promise you I did not kiss her and it is ridiculous that two entertainers cant even rock out with each other without the media making it some type of story. I really hope my fans are not disappointed in me because the truth is I did nothing wrong. I got up there and did my job which is to perform to the best of my ability.”
Whoa, whoa, whoa! Whether Miley meant it or not, this response reads as homophobic and insulting. She promises she didn’t, in fact, kiss her band member, and implies that if she had, it would have been bad/wrong and her fans would have had every right to be disappointed. Gee, thanks. Why didn’t she just say, “We didn’t kiss, but if we had, who cares? Nothing shameful about a smooch.”
In the end, I guess it bothers me when two straight chicks kiss each other because it objectifies them and makes headlines for no reason. These ladies are no better than two girls who make out in bars to get guys’ attention or gals who post pics of themselves on MySpace pretending to lock lips with their besties because it looks sexy. If you want attention, do something original and thought-provoking—not exploitative and cliche.