Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner will pose for the occasional paparazzi photos together, especially around Awards season, but they generally don’t walk red carpets together. Garner has said it’s because she doesn’t want to just be known as the ‘wife of’ a famous husband, but I tend to think it’s Affleck’s idea and she’s just been going along with it. They did make an exception to pose together at the Vanity Fair Oscar party this year and last year, when Argo took home Best Picture.
Here are some photos of the two, married since 2005, at the Save The Children gala in New York last night. Affleck looks a little tipsy to me. Maybe it’s jet lag, but there’s something about his eyes that make it look like he’s had a few. Garner just looks happy to be there and to pose with her husband.
Affleck was there to accept the Global Child Advocate Award for his work founding The Eastern Congo Initiative. In his acceptance speech, Affleck mentioned his argument with Bill Maher and author Sam Harris when he was a guest on Maher’s show last month. Affleck claimed he was making a “Sesame Street” argument that “you don’t judge a whole group of people based on the actions of a few.” I think Affleck was mischaracterizing Harris’ position at least (Maher went a little far with it as is typical of him) and that there was no point in bringing it up again weeks later. Obviously he’s been thinking about it in the interim. Affleck also talked about the charity work that he and his wife do, and I found that part of his speech moving:
Ben Affleck feels more comfortable speaking his mind than pretending to say what people want to hear. So before receiving his award at Wednesday’s Save the Children Illumination Gala, he praised wife Jennifer Garner on her dedication to their family, and then shared insight into his recent spat with “Real Time” host Bill Maher over generalized remarks about Islam.
On an episode last month, Affleck took issue with Maher saying that Islam is “the only religion that acts like the Mafia.”
“I was ultimately making a ‘Sesame Street’ argument. You don’t judge a whole group of people based on the actions of a few,” Affleck said of their heated debate.
The “Gone Girl” actor makes no bones about speaking his mind when it comes to hot-button issues.
“That’s the environment around my dinner table when we talk politics,” he said. “I think I’d rather tell the truth and say what I believe in and make people unhappy than sort of pretend to think something else to accommodate them and try to be liked. That’s just the way it goes and I don’t think I’m any great champion of anything, but if they’re going to put me on a show, I’m going to say what I think.”
As for Garner, the 42-year-old actor says he’s grateful that his wife takes on the “lion’s share” of responsibilities, dedicating her time to raising their three young children, while maintaining her career and charity work.
“She’s been really smart about choosing her projects, doing ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ or ‘Alexander and the Terrible Day,’ smart, good movies that luckily have been successful. And then, they’re not so time-consuming that she can’t do this work and be there for our kids, which is the most important thing to her,” Affleck said.
Garner spoke of how the couple divides their time for philanthropy.
“He works on Eastern Congo Initiative, and I work on the U.S. programs for Save the Children, and within that, I really work on getting kids started on the right foot from birth to 5, helping families get their kids up and ready for school and healthy,” she said, adding: “We don’t scatter our energy around.”
Affleck co-founded the Eastern Congo Initiative in 2010 with Whitney Williams. The organization advocates the economic and social growth of the country through various programs. And while some of their missions focus on the well-being of children, Affleck says he doesn’t make “value judgments” of where the problems are more dire.
“There are children in the United States, my wife has traveled, been in their homes in Kentucky, West Virginia, in the central valley of California who can’t speak and they’re 4 years old, who can’t read until five years later than they should, who get no stimuli, who are really suffering, and we recognize it. In this country, with our wealth, with our, I think, decency and empathy, we should be taking care — at the very least educating all of our citizenry.”
He added: “I also think it’s important to take care of people who are suffering on a different level, which is in Eastern Congo suffering from war and famine and preventable disease. And where maternal health is non-existent, so 1 in 5 children dies before the age of 5.”
[From AP via Yahoo]
It’s hard to fathom that there are kids in our country who live in such dire conditions that they can’t talk until they’re four. Good for Ben and Jen for dedicating their time to charity. I’m happy they posed together and now that I know more about the event I understand why they did it. They’re united in their charity work for children. I would love it if they just started walking the red carpet together at most events from now on, but I doubt that’s going to happen.
Affleck is shown out with saggy pants on 11-16-14. Credit: FameFlynet. Gala photos credit: WENN.com
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Ben Affleck & Jennifer Garner pose together on the red carpet: sweet or weird?