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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Susan Sarandon explains the origins of her political philosophy

In a NY Times article today titled On Purposeful Paths (the online version has a different headline), actress and activist Susan Sarandon explained the origins of her political stances:

"My parents had no idea what parenting was. I’m the oldest of nine kids. My mother was raised in foster care in an orphanage. And my dad’s father died when he was young, and his mother was crazy. So these two met and, thanks to Catholic indoctrination on birth control, started having all these kids. Everyone did where I grew up. And I had to take care of them."

Okay, she didn't say that in response to a question about politics, but to a more general question about her parents. But… does go a long way to explaining her various stances.

I've said many times on this blog that the most interesting thing about a serial killer is finding out what his upbringing was like, because that usually explains how he became the monster he was.

Whether we want to admit it or not, we are our parents. For better or worse -- usually better and worse -- we reflect their temperaments, their attitudes, their interests, their physicality, their intellect, and their character. 

Reading Sarandon's description of the dysfunctionality on both sides of her family was a real aha moment. Sarandon evidently didn't get much nurturing from her mother, and it sounds as if she didn't get much more support from her father. So she's been resentful against the Catholics and everything they represent ever since. Hence, her political stances.

The whole situation reminds me a little of Madonna, who came from a similar background, and who has also spent the rest of her life being as blasphemous as possible.

But even though both women took opposite political and social views from their parents, they did so while somehow managing to hang onto their parents' character. 


Peñaflor said...

It is as though people were doomed to repeat the mistakes of their parents, but rebelling against their parents leads them to make these mistakes in a totally different area of life.

John Craig said...

Penaflor --
Exactly, they are their parents,in a slightly different way.

mark said...

Thank you for the link. She slams her parents and spends the rest of the interview talking about empathy. She is the oldest in her family and to this day doesn't quite see people as equal, perhaps that is middle child projection. In this way, she reminds me of Hillary.

John Craig said...

Mark --
Interesting comparison; I'd put her a cut above Hillary, though. Hillary is corrupt, and a near pathological liar who's supposed to be extremely unpleasant in private. I"m no fan of Sarandon, but at least she seems to be sincere in her beliefs, and isn't trying to make money off of her activism.

Peñaflor said...

Sarandon said she'd rather vote for Trump over Clinton.

"“You know, some people feel that Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately. If he gets in, then things will really explode.”

Hayes then asked her if she thought that it would be dangerous to allow Trump to become president.

“If you think that it’s pragmatic to shore up the status quo right now, then you’re not in touch with the status quo,” she responded."

She might have grudges and unresolved issues, but this doesn't prevent her altogether from having clarity.

John Craig said...

Penaflor --
It almost sounds as if she's saying she'd vote for Trump because he'd hasten the revolution, because the world would collapse under him. This seems to be said in the same spirit in which some white nationalists would say they hoped Obama would get a second term because tat would radicalize the white population quicker.

Sarandon never struck me as a bad person, merely misguided. (And maybe a little crazy, like her parents.)

Dave Moriarty said...

She was great as Annie Savoy in Bull Durham when she voted for both Kevin Costner and Tim Robbins. We learned later that Tim made here major league roster and was a mainstay on her staff for years before getting cut for younger players.

Anonymous said...

Sarandon has publicly admitted she's a "size queen" and it's been reported many times over Mr. Robbins is exceptionally well equipped to meet her needs. I think there is a kind of narcissism in women that manifests itself in seeking out men who are so big that it would cause the normal woman a great deal of discomfort.

In college I had a roommate who was similarly equipped and he told me that he found it a curse, both because most normal women found it painful or even sometimes impossible for him to have relations with, but even more because the "c**k hogs" as he called them were a sort of secret sisterhood and when they found out that a really big man was around, word would spread and they'd all be after him. And most of them were crazy and unpleasant as far as he was concerned. It was worse than the gays, because they might make a discreet inquiry as to whether he was so inclined and when told no, that was the end of it. The sizequeens (that phrase was one we had never heard yet) would not take no for an answer.

John Craig said...

Anon --
Wish I had that "curse" myself.

Interesting about how all of the size queens were crazy and unpleasant. I wonder how that works, why those tendencies go together.

triethylborane said...

Actually no, you don't want to be really huge. Like the above commenter I have known a few guys that really were and to a man, the all said if there was such a thing as penis reduction surgery they would have it done. Women can have their breasts reduced or enlarged and their vaginas tightened, but men have few such options. There are phalloplasty procedures (to increase, not decrease size) but they are not particularly successful.

Bigger than average is okay, and noticeably smaller than average not so good, but really long and/or really thick is a serious encumbrance. One, you simply don't fit some women and others only painfully: indeed, only older women with a lot of stretching from use and childbirth can usually handle the really big ones. There are sizequeens, of course, but as he says, they are usually damaged goods.

Like Sarandon, Madonna is a confirmed SQ and like Sarandon she's an antisocial exhibitionist. At least one of her brothers is flamboyantly gay, surprise surprise.

Unlike Sarandon, Madonna's mother died when she was young. Her father appears to be a conservative Catholic who seems like a decent guy from what I have read.

I read Chrissie Hynde's bio, Reckless and in fact, she comments that her first attempt at sex went over not so well because the guy was more than what she was ready for sizewise. I suspect she is very much like her own parents on a micro-level despite her radical veganism and animal rights activism and, until recently, heavy pot smoking. From her description her dad was someone I probably would have gotten along with pretty well. She was famously strict with her daughters when they were under her roof. (Rush Limbaugh was allowed to use her song as a bumper because her parents liked Limbaugh's show.)

John Craig said...

Triethylborane --
From your knowledge of chemistry (I had to look that term up) and your analysis and your use of the language it's quite apparent that you're a smart one.

Agree with you completely about Madonna, but as I said above about Sarandon vis-a-vis Hillary Clinton, I'd put Sarandon a cut above Madonna. Sarandon does seem deluded, or brainwashed, or whatever you want to call it, but she also seems sincere in her beliefs, even if they are somewhat of a pose as well. Madonna strikes me as a possible sociopath; not her fault that her mother died young, but I always figured with her that the mother dying when she was five still left her without a mother's love at a very formative age, and that has something to do with her character. And even if her father was a decent guy, Madonna seemed to chafe at her upbringing, which has been reflected in virtually every aspect of her persona ever since.

Interesting that Hynde would react to the strict background by being relatively grounded, unlike the other two. I suspect it has a lot to do with whether the parents were narcissistic personalities. Sarandon reacted to her parents, who were probably narcissistic personalities, by going i the opposite direction. Sounds as if Hynde has now more or less adopted her parents' stance, at least on parenting.

Steven said...

I was just watching this short video of Camille Paglia talking about Lena Dunham and it reminded me of when you looked at the childhood's of a couple of celebrities to explain their politics.

John Craig said...

Steven --
Thank you very much, that was a great video. I have always loved Camille Paglia for her honesty and insight, her evisceration of lena Dunham is just one more example.