By Christopher Rosa. Photos: Getty Images.
Earlier this week, news broke that Katy Perry is getting paid $25 million to be a judge on ABC's American Idol reboot. That's a lot of money, yes, but...appropriate. Perry is one of the biggest pop stars on the planet, full stop. She's sold millions of records, is an incredible performer, and knows a thing or two about longevity in the fickle music industry. The "Chained to the Rhythm" singer is an amazing (and game-changing) recruit for American Idol, so it's great that she's getting paiiiid.
But not everyone agrees with this. Enough people have criticized Perry's American Idol salary that 103.5 KTU radio host Carolina Bermudez felt the need to ask her about it in a recent interview. "I'm sure that you hear in the news people talking about you and the whole American Idol situation that's come out," Bermudez said, according to E! Online. "Does that ever irk you that people are talking about how much money you make or how much they paid you to be on that show, or are you like ‘Yup, I deserve every last penny'?"
Perry's response was, naturally, spot on. "I'm really proud that, as a woman, I got paid," she said. "And you know why? I got paid more than, like, pretty much any guy that's been on that show. And, by the way, I love men. So I'm a paid woman, and I'm ready for a beautiful man."
She has every right to be proud, too. We still live in a world where women are perceived negatively if they take ownership of their accomplishments—financial or otherwise. And Perry isn't the first female celebrity to face this kind of backlash. Lena Dunham revealed at the 2015 Hollywood Reporter actress roundtable that people overtly criticized how much she was paid for her first book. "When it was leaked how much I was getting for my book, there were 39,000 articles asking, 'Is she worth it?'" she said. "Then it came out what Aziz Ansari was making on his book. No one says a damn word."
This type of female salary shaming is a huge reason why the gender wage gap exists. Women are socially programmed to simply accept the first offer thrown their way. Thankfully, our culture is evolving and more women are fighting for their worth. There's nothing wrong or showboat-y about being properly compensated or celebrating it.
This story originally appeared on Glamour.
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