Over the course of her acting career, Ashley Judd has never been afraid to do a sex and/or nude scene if a script has called for it. This is par for the course for many actors and actresses (but especially actresses, society being what it is), and many of the people who appear in movies for grownups consider it just another part of their job.
However, now that the politically involved, democrat-leaning lady is eyeing a potential run for Senate in Kentucky, there are those who would seek to use Ms. Judd’s nude scenes as evidence that she is unfit to serve in public office. Writes Taylor Bigler of conservative publication The Daily Caller:
We are used to knowing just about everything there is to know about serious political candidates. But will Judd be the first potential senator who has — literally — nothing left to show us? The actress has bared her breasts in several films and has had some raunchy sex scenes in others. According to MrSkin.com, which bills itself as “the largest free nude celebrity movie archive,” Judd has flashed just about everything on-screen. It seems like she was particularly liberal with nudity early on in her career…Judd did a lesbian sex scene in 2002′s Oscar-nominated “Frida” and has nine other films categorized as “sexy” by Mr. Skin, meaning that there is at least one racy scene in those films.
So…what is this writer’s point, exactly? She stops short of explaining why this information is damning, as if it is simply a given that people will recoil in horror once Ashley Judd’s nudity-filled past is exposed. And I use that term liberally, as scenes that have already been seen by millions of fine, upstanding moviegoers are hardly something that one can “expose.”
Sex positive feminist that I am, I take issue with anyone who thinks a woman’s sexual past has any bearing on her ability to do a particular job, unless that job is “sacrificial virgin.” But this strikes me as especially moronic, because Ashley Judd is not actually someone who runs around naked, murders her husband, or has lesbian affairs with Frida Kahlo. To impugn Ashley Judd for the loose sexual morals of the characters she has played would be like getting mad at Anne Hathaway for crimes committed by Cat Woman. (Which, granted, I would not put it past some people to do.) If anything, it shows she is so committed to her job that she is willing to go that extra mile.
And not that it matters, as all slut-shaming is damaging to women, but most of these “sexy,” naughty films were mainstream movies that a lot of people saw. If a senator wouldn’t feel embarrassed to have gone to see the Oscar nominated Frida, why should Ashley Judd feel embarrassed to have been in it?
I guess “nudity in the movies” is still a hot button issue to a few reactionary conservatives, but I just don’t see that many people jumping on board with this argument. I think it’s more likely that this irrelevant, hypocritical, ad hominem attack is just evidence that, having failed to make her common sense feminism and environmentalism look “extreme,” they have little to nothing left to throw at her.