My hero, although I consider her the same age as me, is Convenor or the Coalition to Repeal the 8th, Ailbhe Smyth. A fabulous feminist, with a heart of gold, Ailbhe has been a brilliant friend and mentor to me over the years. My admiration for her holds no bounds.
Lily Tomlin has been a hero of mine since I first watched Big Business as a kid. She brings a very real badass quality to every role I’ve seen her play.
John Waters, the shock artist and filmmaker behind such cult classics as Pink Flamingos and Female Trouble. Transgressive, hilarious, disgusting, and at 71 years old, still filthy.
Patti Smith, because she has been busy being Patti f*****g Smith for 71 years now and she’s still a bad-ass. Her music has been steeped in social activism for decades; more recent generations and muscians could learn a lot.
Angela Davis, the political activist, writer and scholar has dedicated her life to making the world a better place for us all and is a total feminist hero of mine!
My older and wiser hero would have to be Ian McKellen. He is such a great, well-respected actor. He has done a lot of LGBT activism, plus he is Gandalf and Magneto.
Mary Robinson. She’s an incredible human being, working for the betterment of humanity, and a champion of women’s equality and human rights throughout the world. Also, she founded the Council of Women World Leaders. Need I say more?
Fran Lebowitz. Her style, wit and almost 30-year writers’ block has made her an icon and a personal hero.