More than 13,000 people have signed a petition demanding an apology from Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour after Vogue magazine printed an interview with model Cara Delevingne, in which the interviewer reportedly used “dismissive” language to describe the model's sexuality. Care2 user Julie Rodriguez, who launched the petition, contends that writer Rob Haskell’s language and analysis reinforced stereotypes about lesbians, E! News reported.
In the candid interview, Delevingne opened up about her girlfriend, musician St. Vincent (Annie Clark). She appeared on the cover of the magazine's July issue, addressing her relationship with women for the first time publicly. “I think that being in love with my girlfriend is a big part of why I'm feeling so happy with who I am these days,” Delevingne said. The model and actress -- whose film “Paper Towns” is due for release this month -- spoke about the complexities she faced in understanding and accepting her sexuality. The 22-year-old said that it took her a long time to accept the idea, until she fell in love with a woman at age 20 and had to accept it.
The interview was generally well accepted, but some readers said they were offended by the way Haskell framed Delevingne’s comments. “Her parents seem to think girls are just a phase for Cara, and they may be correct,” he wrote.
Delevingne also talked about her “erotic dreams,” which she said feature men exclusively, her troubled relationship with her mother and her fear of falling in love with a man. Haskell later stated that when he suggested to her that to trust a man, she might have to revise an old and stubborn idea of hers -- that women are perennially troubled and therefore only women will accept her -- the writer said that her smile suggested she conceded the point.
Rodriguez in her petition says the idea that lesbians form relationships with other women only as a result of childhood trauma is a harmful stereotype that such women have been combating for decades. She states that Haskell's language was dismissive and demeaning. She added that people are quick to assume lesbians’ identities are a "phase" and to refuse to recognize the important relationships in their lives.