Wait, Meryl Streep Isn’t A Feminist?!

Photo: Masatoshi Okauchi/Rex/REX USA.
She punched the air when Patricia Arquette spoke out for gender equality at this year's Oscars. She's got the lead role in the upcoming Suffragette. She's Meryl freaking Streep. And yet, she doesn't identify as a feminist. "I am a humanist," the acclaimed actress told Time Out London. "I am for nice easy balance." So...she wants equal rights. Like the equal rights she's lobbied for. Like the equal rights feminists are fighting for. Streep isn't the first female celebrity to opt for the humanist umbrella rather than the more accurate, more progressive feminist label. The question is, why? She calls suffragettes "courageous, relentless, righteous, and right," but seems to skirt the subject when it comes to expressing her own feminist (sorry, humanist) views. Here's her tongue-in-cheek response when asked whether it pisses her off to be paid less than male co-stars. "Oh darlin’, why ever would you imagine that?" She did touch on sexism in the industry in the interview, however, making a statement that any other person would consider a feminist argument. "Men should look at the world as if something is wrong when their voices predominate,"she said. "They should feel it. People at agencies and studios, including the parent boards, might look around the table at the decision-making level and feel something is wrong if half their participants are not women. Because our tastes are different, what we value is different. Not better, different." Hmm. If Meryl Streep of all people doesn't understand that her views make her a feminist, is it really all that surprising that other female stars are shying away from the designation, too? Ladies, the water's fine, really.

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