Been really thinking recently of how lesbians are viewed in the overall media, and one would have to live under a rock not to see the differences extended to two of the most visible women, Rosie O'Donnell and Ellen De Generes. The reason this has come to mind recently is that Parade Magazine had one of their polls that found Rosie O'Donnell the most annoying celebrity to most Americans. Wow, I guess that bubble of happiness millions of American women had while they TIVO'd her daytime "Rosie O'Donnell Show" has certainly burst at this point. Another celebrity fall from grace, last week's news.
Contrast her current dismissal with the meteoric rise of Ellen De Generes, who's fans are almost as rabid as Rosie's were, and it gives me pause. Two very different lesbian women, in very different positions on the media scale. I like both of them, but wonder why one is more acceptable to the general public than the other. Rosie is like most of the real lesbian women I know personally, and now that she is out of the straight jacket TV role that was her closet has taken on a lot of realities that face real lesbian women. I am sure her adopted children, visible relationship, and liberal political slant has made the establishment rather uncomfortable. Her well publicized argument with her "View" goldengirl (straight) co-host was probably the last nail in her coffin. Or was it the name calling feud with Donald Trump? In any case, most annoying? Damn...I would have thought that honor could go to any number of current media darlings.
Then there is Ellen De Generes. Out, but with a girlfriend right out of an "L" Word script. No kids there, no annoying politics. Until recently she never even uttered her girlfriend's name or made any reference to her orientation on her own show. "Don't ask, don't tell" could certainly have applied here. Carefully trendy, in the right clothes with a really good stylist. This is the lesbian that this country is willing to embrace. Do not misunderstand my intent, I like Ellen and find her focus on the positive in life very admirable. But I do see her as carefully packaged for general consumption as Rosie once was. Just a more acceptable, thinner, less politically "out" version.
I guess I have been wondering what kind of message that sends to all the young lesbians out in the world. The chubby mouthy ones, the visibly butch ones, the ones not ready for prime time. In any case, ROSIE...you are far from the most annoying celebrity to me.