Angelina’s original article can be found here: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/14/opinion/my-medical-choice.html?_r=1&
Wow, Angelina is brave. Kudos to her. After everything the global media has accused her of and after every time they and everyone else has openly and unfairly judged her, she still has the guts to write such an open article for The New York Times, purely to try and help others to learn from her situation.
There have been criticisms and insults no end, of course. From implying it was unfair that she had the procedure just because she’s rich, to regurgitating the husband stealing line to saying “poor Brad”. Let’s look at each of these three recurring arguments one by one:
- So just because she’s rich but also a humanitarian she shouldn’t try to look after her own body and her own family? She has spoken out saying that she didn’t want her children to be left without a mother due to breast cancer like she herself was… that is reason enough. Equally, this is clearly a terrifying life decision that doesn’t only come down to money; she is still a woman who is used to having an attractive body who had to make a conscious choice to take some of that away from herself. Lastly, if this story generates enough publicity then perhaps the powers that be will take note of the influence she’s had over women who want to look after their bodies and families in the same way and maybe even make the procedure more accessible. This would be an amazing outcome that Angelina would undoubtedly feel very proud of , as she should, whilst being happy for the world’s women.
- It isn’t relevant if she “stole” Brad from anyone else. They have a family now, and all involved have moved on. This sort of health situation is much more serious than that.
- Angelina says in her article that Brad was at the facility for every minute of her surgeries and has been nothing but loving and supportive. Why should we doubt that? She also says that the only real evidence of the procedures are some small scars. I’m sure he can live with that- if he couldn’t then she would be fine without him anyway.
Angelina didn’t even need to put herself through this public scrutiny. It’s something that she could easily have hidden and kept between her and her family, but she decided to be a wonderful human being and tell the world about it in the hope that more people become aware of the possibility of identifying their risk of breast cancer and also the procedures available. She doesn’t mention that men can also get breast cancer, but so many people have been bringing it up in the wake of the article that more will be becoming aware of it anyway. For a celebrity nowadays to use their public status for good is always a happy sight to behold.
Angelina Jolie should be applauded for not only taking such a brave step to reduce her risk of breast cancer from 87% to <5%, but also for trying to create a great awareness of choice for others. This decision would not necessarily be right for everyone, but it is only fair that everyone has the same knowledge to assess a situation and this was unfortunately all too obscure until now.
Here’s a brilliant cartoon on the subject: http://rosalarian.tumblr.com/post/50452207989/tickingtimebomb