By Maeve Reston
Los Angeles Times.
When Gwyneth Paltrow stirred controversy this week by comparing her daily struggles with Internet trolls to the “dehumanizing” experience of soldiers at war, she messed with the wrong woman: Cindy McCain.
Hearing about Paltrow’s comments, the wife of Arizona Sen. John McCain took to Twitter, calling the actress “a joke” and stating that “My 2 sons serving in the military should talk to her.” (McCain’s son Jimmy served in Iraq as a Marine and her son Jack is a Navy lieutenant.)
In an interview on Thursday with HLN Now TV, she went a step further, calling Paltrow’s comments “ignorant” and “selfish” and offering to take her to meet with veterans.
“I would encourage Gwyneth Paltrow — and I would be happy to go with her — to go sit down with some troops who have served in Afghanistan or Iraq and talk to them about what really goes on, and perhaps meet some of the young men and women who have lost limbs from this,” Cindy McCain said on HLN Now TV. “It’s Hollywood; I don’t know what else to say.”
Paltrow, the Academy Award-winning actress and founder of goop.com, made the comments this week at a technology “Code Conference” hosted by Re/code that delved into Internet culture.
“You come across [online comments] about yourself and about your friends, and it’s a very dehumanizing thing. It’s almost like how, in war, you go through this bloody, dehumanizing thing, and then something is defined out of it,” Paltrow said at the conference, according Re/code’s write-up of the event. “My hope is, as we get out of it, we’ll reach the next level of conscience.”
Paltrow went on to say that the Internet offers amazing opportunities to “mature and learn,” but also “to project outward our hatred” through anonymous comments.