While appearing on The Ellen Show on Wednesday to promote her upcoming movie Office Christmas Party, actress Jennifer Aniston took the time to open up about the inspiration behind her July 2016 op-ed published in the Huffington Post. As it turns out, a mob of paparazzi once swarmed Aniston and husband Justin Theroux at an airport after the couple returned home from a vacation. The curious "reporters" wanted to know if she was pregnant based on a tabloid photo. After several years of pregnancy rumors egged on by the media, Aniston was finally fed up, and the obvious invasion of her privacy is what prompted her to write and publish the "For the Record" article. She told DeGeneres that women need to stop buying and reading tabloid magazines — after all, as Aniston so eloquently put it, women do more than procreate:
We as women do a lot of incredible things in this world other than just procreate and not that that is not, but it’s like we just get boxed in. ... We have to stop listening to them and we have to stop buying them because we have to support each other, especially at this time, to love each other, to support, and to be proud of women, of whatever your choice is in life.
There are many quotes from Aniston's original essay that perfectly describe how a woman's worth extends far beyond her looks or pregnancy status. This instance certainly wasn't the first time she's spoken up about the paparazzi's constant coverage of her life — and it likely won't be the last.
"The objectification and scrutiny we put women through is absurd and disturbing. The way I am portrayed by the media is simply a reflection of how we see and portray women in general, measured against some warped standard of beauty."
You've got to give it to Aniston for truly standing against what so many female celebrities go through each time they step out of the door. Celebrities seem "fair game" for photographers and tabloids, which truly does translate to how our society sees women in general. We shouldn't be building any standard of beauty, since there is not one "type" of beauty.
Aniston also said in her Huffington Post article:
"I resent being made to feel 'less than' because my body is changing and/or I had a burger for lunch and was photographed from a weird angle and therefore deemed one of two things: 'pregnant' or 'fat.'"
"The message that girls are not pretty unless they’re incredibly thin, that they’re not worthy of our attention unless they look like a supermodel or an actress on the cover of a magazine is something we’re all willingly buying into."
It is important for us to have these conversations, because as Aniston says, it will affect young girls. And, as we know, a young generation is often highly influenced by celebrities. So, it's more important than ever for Aniston to talk about this, get the message out there, and not let people tell her what she should do with her body, and what she should look like.
Keep doing you, Ms. Aniston.