If you were Jennifer Lynn Lopez or Benjamin Géza Affleck—people with extensive financial, personal, and professional resources—where would you have a marriage ceremony? Italy? Your hometown, perhaps? In California? These two superstars could pick almost any destination in the world to exchange their vows, and yet they chose a plantation. Well, not a real plantation. It’s kind of worse.
Over the weekend, the couple that once starred in Gigli—one of the most critically panned and reviled mainstream movies of the last 30 years—held a wedding for family and friends after they eloped in Vegas. The site of the wedding was a Georgia plantation-style home built in 2000 on top of land that once belonged to a real plantation called Hampton Pastures. Apparently, the land includes an unmarked grave where slaves were buried. Ben Affleck bought this property in 2003. Odd choices all around here, but again, it gets worse.
Back in 2015, Affleck was embroiled in a little bit of a scandal related to his appearance on the PBS show Finding Your Roots. The actor successfully strong-armed the program and its host, Henry Louis Gates Jr., into suppressing information that he is the descendant of a slave-owning sheriff from Savannah, Georgia. He later apologized because he got caught.
The idea of celebrating romance on sites of unrepentant horror is callous. No matter how stately, pastoral, and ostentatious a plantation’s grounds may be, the history is nothing but ugly. Low-hanging fruit here, but seriously, what type of sicko would want to get married at Auschwitz?
Anyone who has a desire to have a plantation wedding is a moron at best. Now, a person who gets married at what’s essentially a playhouse plantation, built on grounds where a real plantation once existed, that they currently own for some reason—only the descendant of a slave-owning sheriff could pull that off.