Prominent actor/wokeboy Matt McGorry hosted the Ms. Foundation Gloria Awards this week, and Cosmopolitan got him in for an interview after the fact. Here, from that interview, is some insight on what Matt McGorry thinks about feminism, men’s role in feminism, how to tell if a guy is a real feminist, and (subtextually) the deep pit of moldering bones covered up by all the gold stars in the picture.
On whether it’s easier or “perceived as cooler” for a man to be a feminist:
Yeah. I do. I think it’s easier to occur to women to be feminists, but I think it’s easier to be one as a man.
On how it hurts when the people you are trying to help disagree with you:
I’ve had my feelings hurt a lot because I like to think I’m doing good work and I like to think I’m a good person, [but] sometimes people might disagree with what I’m doing or how I’m doing it — people who are within the movement — and that’s hurtful.
On whether or not he, an ally, has a sufficient number of allies:
Some feminist women support me and some don’t; probably the majority [do], maybe? Hopefully? If not, I’m probably doing something wrong.
On realizing there’s no way to win this game:
I said every woman with a clit deserves an orgasm as much as every man with a penis. And some people called me out and were like, “This is not inclusive, it’s transphobic — not every man has a penis, not every woman has a clit. And some have vice versa.” And at the time I was like, “Fuck, I can’t win. What can I say that will ever be right?”
On realizing you might as well try anyway:
I just changed it and said every person with a clit deserves an orgasm just as every person with a penis. It’s a simple adjustment but it’s more inclusive.
On the conceptual snake that eats its own tail and then takes Instagrams of it captioned “I shouldn’t be getting all this praise for Instagramming me eating my own tail”:
I get a lot of praise for saying the things I’m saying and I understand how that would upset some people. I feel like I might be upset if I was a person of color or a woman. I can imagine that every time I’m getting positive grace for this, it might remind people of the difference in how people of privilege are treated versus people who aren’t [of privilege] are treated. Because in an ideal world, I wouldn’t be getting the positive praise for it. Because it wouldn’t be a rare thing.
On how you can tell if a man’s feminism is genuine or not:
If your feminism stops at women — and when we say women, we say default “white women” — and the man has no interest in trying to parse apart what it might mean to be a woman of color versus a white woman or a trans woman or a trans woman of color, I’d say that’s a pretty big red flag. It is probably about getting praise.
I would say that it’s also a red flag to think that a sufficiently extensive social justice vocabulary is in itself proof that the underlying intentions are genuine—but hey, it’s true that nothing is more insincere than feminism that exists for praise. You can read the whole interview here.
Images via Matt McGorry/Instagram