The online harassment she received for impersonating Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Saturday Night Live drove cast member Aidy Bryant to delete her Twitter account and walk away for good. Every time she played Sanders on the show, Bryant says she would be “inundated with tweets” from people on both the left and right sides of the aisle.
The tweets, Bryant says, were all directed at mocking both Sarah Huckabee Sanders’s and her appearances and had nothing to do with any of Sanders’s ideas or policy positions. She described the abuse she endured to an audience at SXSW in Austin, Texas on Monday night.
“I’ve talked about this before but I think the thing that shocked me about it — and it’s really the reason I got off Twitter — was every time I played Sarah Huckabee Sanders … every time I did it, I would get a ton of tweets and 50% of them would be conservative people who would be like, ‘You are a fat disgusting pig who should not play this strong, independent woman.’ And the other 50% were like ‘Aidy is too beautiful to play this fat, disgusting liar.’”
But when the audience started to clap in response, Bryant was quick to issue a warning.
“I want to caution you about clapping for that because I think it’s really disgusting to reduce both of us to our looks and both of us to being a pig. I think whether you like what she says or not, we should not be reduced to being called pigs. That is, to me, what made this so dark, so incredibly dark,” she said.
This is inexcusable. Body-shaming has no place in our society. Everyone should be expected to show respect for others who disagree with them and be given the same in return.
Since she joined the White House as press secretary, Sanders has too often been a victim of body-shaming. Sadly, it has become a commonplace for women to be personally and baselessly attacked in an effort to delegitimize their qualifications, silence their ideas, and sometimes even to try and discourage them from pursuing leadership positions.
Champion Women, launched by IWV in 2018, is a non-partisan movement committed to ending the objectification of women to ensure that all voices are respected and heard. Help us hold offenders accountable by calling out anyone who tries to silence, marginalize or objectify women. #ChampionWomen