The firestorm sparked by Gwyneth Paltrow’s remarks comparing online hackling of celebrities to being in a war raged on Friday as a member of the U.S. Army special forces slammed the actress in a sarcastic column.
Green Beret Bryan Sikes addressed the recently separated star of Shakespeare in Love in the form of a personal letter, which appeared on the site Clash Daily run by conservative commentator and author Doug Giles.
âI’d first like to start out by saying how terrible I feel for you and all your friends that on a daily basis have to endure mean words written by people you donât know.
‘I can only imagine the difficulty of waking up in a 12,000 square foot Hollywood home and having your assistant retrieve your iPhone, only to see that the battery is low and someone on twitter (the social media concept that you and all of your friends contribute to on an hourly basis to feed your ego and narcissistic ways), has written a mean word or 2 about you.’
Sgt First Class Sikes continued in this derisive vain, suggesting that Paltrow, 41, should ‘receive a medal’ for enduring verbal abuse online at the hands of ‘meanies.’
Paltrow was outside Los Angeles at Re/Code’s Code Conference speaking to Silicon Valley executives Tuesday when she made the offhanded remark drawing a comparison between cyberbullied celebrities and soldiers in a war zone.
‘It’s a very dehumanizing thing. It’s almost like how, in war, you go through this bloody, dehumanizing thing, and then something is defined out of it. My hope is, as we get out of it, we’ll reach the next level of conscience,’ she told the audience.
Sikes, a Purple Heart recipient, hit out at Paltrow, calling her ‘insecure and mentally weak’ for comparing his own and other service members’ devastating experiences on the battlefield to her life of comfort and leisure – an assertion he described as ‘dehumanizing.’
In 2008, Sikes was injured in Afghanistan in an IED explosion. In his letter, he talks about seeing his friends get killed and lose limbs in firefights.
âLet me be the first to burst your bubble: a long line at Starbucks, your driver being 3 minutes late, a scuff mark on your $1200 shoes and a mean tweet do not constitute difficulty in the eyes of a soldier,â he wrote.
Sikes, 28, of Florida, is married and has two children. He noted that unlike celebrity wives and mothers who have a team of consultants, nannies and life coaches to help them run a household, military wives have to do it on their own.
Sgt Sikes was not the only on to attack Ms Paltrow for her questionable comments.
Cindy McCain, the wife of former POW John McCain and the mother of two soldiers, called Paltrow ‘a joke’ on Twitter.
‘Her life is like taking bullets for a soldier. What a joke! My 2 sons serving in the military should talk to her,’ Cindy MCain stated.
It was a small part of what she said while sharing a stage with tech CEOs, but was more than enough to infuriate the war hero’s wife.
Arizona Senator and former presidential hopeful John McCain was was taken as a prisoner of war as the third generation naval officer served as a pilot in Vietnam in 1967.
Senator McCain’s plane was shot down by friendly fire and he would eventually spend five and a half years as an horifically abused prisoner before coming home to receive the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Purple Hear and Distinguished Flying Cross military honors.
Cindy McCain on Wednesday offered up a helpful suggestion to the Country Strong actress and self-styled lifestyle guru.
‘Perhaps Gwyneth Paltrow should go out on patrol with some soldiers. Kind of like a Red Carpet in her mind I guess!’ she tweeted.
While the Goop founder’s appearance at the conference was a reaction to malevolent online attacks on her and her famous friends, any good it could have done has likely now been erased.
Which is nothing new for the recently single Paltrow.
A week before news of her ‘conscious uncoupling’ from husband Chris Martin broke, the 41-year-old infuriated working women across America when she said they had it easier than famous acting moms.
‘I think it’s different when you have an office job, because it’s routine and, you know, you can do all the stuff in the morning and then you come home in the evening,’ she told E! ‘I think to have a regular job and be a mom is not as, of course there are challenges, but it’s not like being on set.’
Many women were put off by the comments, but none as famously as mother Mackenzie Dawson who made headlines with her open letter to Paltrow published in the New York Post on March 27.
‘Thank God I donât make millions filming one movie per year is what I say to myself pretty much every morning,’ is one of many zingers in Dawson letter, which no doubt helped put the normally aloof Paltrow on the defensive.
On May 8th, she responded to the anger over her working mom comments with a Goop in which she drew a different sort of parallel with armed combat.
In the post titled Ending the Mommy Wars, Paltrow wrote:
‘Why do we feel so entitled to opine, often so negatively, on the choices of other women?
As the mommy wars rage on, I am constantly perplexed and amazed by how little slack we cut each other as women,’ she wrote.
For her part, Cindy McCain used Thursday’s whirlwind of publicity around her attack on Paltrow to help publicize a good cause.
‘Happy to have joined @MikeGalanosHLN @HLNNowTV to chat about #humantrafficking and Gweneth Paltrow crazy statement,’ McCain tweeted.