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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Siena chapter.

This week at HC Siena we’ve been celebrating women’s empowerment. It’s a case of divine timing that this coincides with Oprah’s interview with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry—finally, we got to see Markle end her silence on the racist abuse popular media has been throwing her way ever since the pair’s wedding, along with a lukewarm and nameless callout of the lack of support from the rest of the aristocracy that led to their estrangement. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Photo by Mark Jones distributed under a CC BY 2.0 license

While the interview is almost a tradition after Princess Diana’s famous tell-all, we can hope it’s also a shift in how women are able to take control of how tabloid culture negatively portrays them. Countless other women before Markle have been mercilessly railed on by the media and, due to fear of backlash or lack of access to a platform, haven’t been able to enjoy a rewriting of history on such a grand scale. With that, here’s the four living women we’d most like to see receive justice in the form of an honest and meme-able tell-all with Oprah.   

Britney Spears

It’s no surprise that Britney Spears tops our charts on this one. The New York Times documentary Framing Britney Spears was a pretty damning retrospective on how the entertainment industry and popular culture took an innocent and talented young girl and effectively destroyed her mental health. It took a decade for the “2008 Britney” memes to fully die, and is an inexcusable look on how we were all complicit in Spears’ breakdown. The only thing missing from this doc is what we’d all like to hear the most—a candid sit-down interview from Spears on what her life has been like since her conservatorship began. Hopefully, Oprah would be a bit classier of an interviewer than some of the horrific segments we’ve seen in the past. 

Monica Lewinsky

As is the case with our treatment of countless women in the public eye, it took us as a culture far too long to re-evaluate our treatment of Monica Lewinsky throughout the Clinton Impeachment. Through countless video hours and magazine pages of slut-shaming, it seemed as though no one was questioning why we pushed so much blame onto a young intern whose boss and cohort was one of the most powerful men on earth. Thankfully, a combination of the #MeToo movement, Lewinsky’s own Op-Ed for Vanity Fair, and docuseries The Clinton Affair means that Lewinsky has been able to have a big hand in restoring the narrative. But with the all-encapsulating coverage the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal received the first go-around, we’d like to see Oprah bring even more attention to the unfair dynamics and misogynistic culture that was at play.

Demi Lovato

While it’s a comforting idea that society has gotten a bit more feminist since our previous two entries were at the top of the tabloids, Demi Lovato’s experience as an entertainer shows that a ridiculous amount of work still needs to be done. Lovato’s been pretty candid in the past about her mental health, substance issues, and dealing with it all while being in the public eye—she even has a second tell-all documentary that will be covering her near-fatal overdose coming our way later this year. While it’s great that she’s able to own the events of her life, and the internet’s reception has certainly been skewing more positive (though one can never be free of the nasty, prejudiced hate comments that come from Twitter), we’d love to see her explore these topics with the talk show queen herself. 

Megan Fox

We’ve been doing Megan Fox wrong for far too long. The Michael Bay movies that made her famous proved to be a double-edged sword in which the media and fans of popular culture alike treated her only as a sexual object, a dumb bimbo who’s only good for posing under the hood of a car. Fox was near-indecently young in those films and since then has largely stayed off social media to avoid the mistreatment she’s faced for years. Besides deserving better than that on the level of being a human being alone, Fox is an intelligent woman and has been an outspoken feminist for years. In Fox’s own words in a conversation with Jennifer’s Body writer Diablo Cody:

“I feel like I was sort of out in front of the Me Too movement before the Me Too movement happened. I was speaking out and saying, you, know ‘Hey, these things are happening to me and they’re not okay’ and everyone was like ‘Yeah, f**k you, we don’t care, you deserve it because of how you talk, because of how you look, because of how you dress, because of the jokes you make…I don’t feel like there’s a space in feminism for me. Even though I consider myself a feminist I feel like feminists don’t want me to be a part of their group.”

Fox’s words highlight how much work still needs to be done, even in feminist spaces, to be inclusive and respect women’s choices on how to live their life and to stop slut-shaming women for things that are out of their control. While her interview with Cody is extraordinarily prolific, especially for Jennifer’s Body fans, we’d love an interview that goes really in-depth on how Megan Fox has been treated throughout her career.   

Hopefully, society will eventually reach a point where we stop needing platforms to re-examine our treatment of the women in the media. Hopefully, we’ll start to get it right on the first go-around. Until then, amplifying the voices of women who have been unjustly demonized in popular opinion is something we can’t get enough of. 


Carli Scolforo is a Siena College Class of 2021 alumna. She double majored in English and Communications with a Journalism track during her time at Siena.