If you weren’t on the internet this weekend, you may have missed a confusing yet somewhat hilarious scandal sweeping the nation. Hilaria Baldwin, the yoga influencer wife of Alec Baldwin, has been accused of exaggerating her Spanish heritage by faking an accent and changing her birth name, Hilary.
If you missed it, here’s an explainer with some of the key points floating around. But to catch you up to speed, Hilaria’s now-deleted CAA profile said she was born in Spain, she has been referred to in the press as “Spanish” for years, and has spoken in interviews with an accent that comes and goes. Alec has also referred to his wife as being “from Spain,” the press has said her family is from the country, and the couple’s five children all have Spanish names.
However, people online are now claiming Hilaria, born Hilary Thomas, has been exaggerating her Spanish roots and was actually born and attended school in Boston. They reference a Boston Herald article from 2012 which explains Hilaria’s ties to the area, her name change, and have also dug deep into the heritage of her parents and grandparents (Hilaria’s parents do currently live in Spain, where they retired after long careers in Boston).
Others have pointed out how it is problematic for an American to appropriate an immigrant experience, no matter how close they may feel to a culture.
Hilaria addressed the rumors over the weekend, saying that she split time between Spain and Boston as a child and was raised bilingual, so she feels she belongs to both cultures. She also said she was raised being called both Hilaria and Hilary. Alec has also defended her, as has her stepdaughter, Ireland.
For whatever reason (we are bored), the story has captivated many of us. And despite the Baldwins’ attempt to clarify the situation, the story has only grown.
There are a lot of rumors flying around, and I invite you to fall down those rabbit holes. Of course, the memes are also flowing. And TBH, they are really, really funny. This is a classic.
Lots of pop culture fits.
A lot of people are joking about their own ~~new backstories~~.
Also this def needs to happen, right?
And then a lot of people just wanted to know more.
No matter what is actually going on here, thank you, Hilaria. This scandal has been a great distraction from the shitshow that is 2020.