Lena Dunham, female comedians should take more responsibility — not less

Some background on what I’m about to say later in this blog post:

  1. Lena Dunham is a multi-faceted woman in Hollywood. She’s a comedian, actress, director, creator, writer and many other things.
  2. Lena created and stars in a popular show on HBO called Girls 
  3. I have never watched Girls 
  4. In the show Girls, Lena Dunham’s character gets naked a lot
  5. Lena has received a heavy amount of criticism due to the fact that her character gets naked a lot — a fair amount of this criticism is leveled at Lena because of her body shape (she’s not a size 0 model)
  6. Lena hosted Saturday Night Live this past Saturday where she got naked
  7. Lena received a lot of Twitter-hate and Twitter-rage about getting naked on SNL
  8. Lena sent a very inappropriate tweet on Sunday night about child / familial molestation and her nakedness
  9. Lena deleted the tweet and apologized
  10. Part of her apology stated “Not if they were a fifty year old man. But by my lights women can have a lot of joke flexibility. Ya gotta get by in this world”

Whew! That’s a lot of background bullet points.

Here’s the thing. Rape jokes should never be okay. Whether you’re a 50-year-old man or a 20-something female comedian.

As bad as rape jokes are, jokes about molestation are even worse and have no place in our culture.

And, a 20-something female comedian — especially one who champions women’s rights as strongly as Lena does in other instances — should be even more aware about the impact of those words.

Lena blamed her tweet on Sunday on being sleepy. And, while I don’t consider that a valid excuse for this type of joke, I do hope she learns something from the backlash about how inappropriate it was.

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One comment

  1. I am with you on that. Some things are not funny. Sometimes I Digital citizenship lessons ought to be mandates for all. Kids are often a lot smarter about it than adults.

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