Anatomy of a Double Standard
Here is a rarity: A situation in which nobody is an asshole (well, except one rando with a Tumblr), but the situation is nonetheless utter and complete bullsh-t.
So, Dylan Sprouse.
Who? I know. Depending on how old you are, the answer is “one of the twins who played Adam Sandler’s kid in Big Daddy” or Zack from Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Dylan and his twin brother Cole were very, very famous and successful in certain Disney channel circles. Like, higher-paid than Miley Cyrus. More on that in a minute.
So Dylan, who IMDB tells me is 21, was I guess bored or horny or both, and because the kids do what they do, he sent a dick pic (well, a holding-his-dick pic) to some girl who proceeded to upload it to her Tumblr. I tried to verify this but I bounced up against lame shock-porn in the process, so sleuth for the Tumblr at your own risk.
Sorry, did you miss sentence two? A former Disney star sent a NAKED PICTURE and a girl PUT IT ON TUMBLR and everyone saw! And now his life is ruined forever and he’s a total slut and an embarrassment to all the little kids who look up to him and he should be ashamed and understand that he’s a role model for life!
Wait, no. Let’s try this again:
Dylan Sprouse, a hugely highly-paid and regarded former Disney star sent a dick pic to a girl who put it online and as far as I understand, nobody cared. Even Dylan didn’t care. Here’s his Twitter response to the whole thing:
“Whoops. Guess I’m not 14 and fat anymore.”
Right? Like he could give a sh*t, and it’s partly because he and his brother told the mouse to go f*ck themselves a couple of years back and so he’s beholden to nobody, but more importantly, it’s because it was a dick pic, not a picture of him committing a crime.
It’s because men don’t have to adhere to being role models ever, no matter how young they were when they first rose to fame, but young girls have to pay for their mistakes and endure shaming labels for months and months after minor transgressions and even worse, faux-concern from newscasters and church groups, no matter how far from the clutches of Disney they run.
I mean, yeah, it was a private picture, not a performance at the VMAs, but still. Remember when Vanessa Hudgens sent nude pics? She was photographed coming out of churches for a month. By contrast, Sprouse apologized. You know what he wrote on his blog (in part)?
I’m to blame and I’ll look this incident in the eye like a man.I did it, but I’d be damned if I didn’t own that shit like Beyonce would want me to.
Come on! He’s joking about it and being self-deprecating and laughing a mere 24 hours after the fact?
To be clear, I didn’t care about Dylan Sprouse before, and now I think he’s awesome. I also followed some links about how, exactly, he and his brother told Disney where to shove their offers. So I’m basically a fan now, which is weird. And yes, I looked at the nude pic, and no, I don’t want to say any more about that…
But if this was a girl – say, Miranda Cosgrove, who was about as famous and roughly the same age – there would have been a publicist-written apology campaign and an earnest interview with Matt Lauer and hand-wringing on mommy blogs everywhere. It’s been two days and I’ve been waiting for it to be but this was not even an event, which is as it should be, but also totally bananas. As long as kids are gonna be stupid with the selfies, can we cut them all the same amount of slack? I know the answer is no, because what is the world without calling people sluts, but maybe for Christmas you all can lie to me.