We awarded Wentworth Miller our Man of the Year Award
last month for the Prison Break
star's commitment to speaking up for, and tackling, issues that affect gay and bi men, from body-shaming and mental health to homophobia.
Less than a month later, and the out and proud Hollywood actor has continued to speak out against hatred after he was called a "little bitch" after sharing an article about masculinity on social media.
After Miller shared '4 Ways Sexist, Macho Culture Hurts Men', which argues that macho culture causes aggression and suppression of emotions, a man from Germany took a swipe at the star, commenting: "A real man on camera and nothing but a little bitch in real life, way to go Michael [Scofield, Wentworth's character in Prison Break
Wentworth then decided to use the hateful comment as a teachable moment, and posted the comment to his public page.
"Normally I would just ban this person. Their sentiments have zero nutritional value and, in my opinion, reflect an antiquated belief system that is not only harmful, but on its way out," Miller wrote.
"That said, the attitude expressed does open the door to some interesting topics. Like gender performance, gender policing, shaming, sexuality, projection, toxic masculinity, and the lowering of public discourse."
After come fans commented that the post was just harmless words, Wentworth followed up with a post explaining why he made an example out of the comment.
"I’ve read some lovely comments today. There was a lot of food for thought. I also read a lot of advice. Much of which boiled down to 'It’s only words.' 'Sticks and stones.' Etc.
"I recognize, and appreciate, that this is coming from a positive, supportive, protective place. If only it was true.
"Words matter. Labels matter. The way in which we speak to and about each other matters. Politicians spewing hate from the podium one day translates into real world violence the next. We know this.
"What’s more, IMO, 'You shouldn’t let it get to you' is code for 'man up.' With respect, I consider it to be another form of gender policing.
"For the record, this person’s comment was momentarily unpleasant. Then it was over. It affected me because I’m a human being.
"I feel things. Then I move through them. And one of the ways I do that is by examining the situation and looking for the gift. The gold. The lesson.
And as someone who’s been called a 'little bitch' before (because #sexism #misogyny #homophobia #toxicmasculinity), this felt like an opportunity for dissection and discussion. And I took it. Hence the repost."
Earlier this year, LAD Bible
were forced to apologise after Wentworth called them out on a meme they'd created contrasting his physique during Prison Break
with one where he had put on weight. Recounting that when the photo was taken he was feeling "suicidal," he commented that the meme had made "it hurt to breathe."
Read more about Wentworth Miller and the rest of winners from the Attitude Awards 2016, presented in association with Virgin Holidays, in Attitude's November issue, which is still available to download from pocketmags.com/attitude.
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