Important News for Men
Anyone who has actually listened to actresses and other women in the entertainment industry knows that the sexual harassment that’s currently creating a scandal in Hollywood and (hopefully) ending careers of powerful executives has been going on since the film and music industries began in the early 20th century.
BUT MEN DON’T GET IT.
10/20/17: There have been several new developments in this story. More after the jump.
That “non-sexual touching” that doesn’t bother you boys? The crude jokes that you think we take too seriously? The men who stand too close, loom over women, stare at women’s chests or butts, maybe cop a quick, “harmless” feel, or are overly familiar with complements? Those are the early warning signs of a man who will go much further if he can get you alone in a room or even a dark corner. Women recognize them. They’ll cringe and move away from a guy like that.
But most guys don’t notice those behaviors. They aren’t threatening to guys, or ever aimed at them. Besides being sexual behaviors, they are also dominance behaviors, and subconsciously, most (not all) men find both types of behavior acceptable toward women. Can’t let the little ladies get too far out of line, after all.
The Matt Damons, Ben Afflecks, Oliver Stones and Quentin Tarrantinos of the world certainly won’t notice. To them, this is just how guys act. If women want to join the workplace, they need to learn to join in with the normal competitive atmosphere that’s already there.
You know, like the one Casey Affleck created on the set of his movie I’m Still Here, which resulted in the only two women who were working on the crew suing him for sexual harassment. The behavior Ben and Matt overlooked and tacitly supported when they promoted Casey as an Oscar nominee. The behavior they are now shocked, SHOCKED I TELL YOU, to discover Harvey Weinstein has been engaging in for years, even though Ben, at least, has known about it for 20-odd years. Quentin is doing them one better. He’s stunned AND heartbroken, having never noticed any signs of this behavior in his longtime collaborator.
ETA 10/20/17: Oops, Quentin was lying. Tarantino has since admitted to knowing about the rape and harassment, but doing nothing about it, marginalizing the women who confessed the abuse to him directly. One of those women was his girlfriend at the time, actress Mira Sorvino. Now let’s wait for the women he’s harassed and groped to come forward.
Do I need to pass out vomit bags yet?
But it’s easy to think something isn’t a big deal, when it’s not affecting you, right guys? It’s not like someone’s grabbing their balls, after all. It’s not like someone’s holding them down in public and threatening their macho reputation. It’s not like someone’s threatening their paychecks. That would be terrible.
Except, the women of Hollywood, besides having physical and emotional consequences from their rape, abuse and harassment, do face monetary consequences as well. That’s how these powerful men keep most women quiet. They threaten their careers. They blackball them, spreading rumors and calling in favors to make sure that a woman won’t be able to find work and her projects will be cancelled. That’s why even the bravest and most famous of women usually don’t talk.
But, it’s just a joke, or a little non-sexual touching. He didn’t mean to put his hand there. What’s the big deal?
ETA 10/20/17: Just in case anyone is still wondering why women don’t come forward, here you go:
The number of women who are accusing Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment in one form or another has risen to more than 50.
Lupita’s brave, moving Op-Ed piece about her encounters with Harvey Weinstein:
The good news is, she hasn’t been harassed by anyone else in the business. That doesn’t mean that others haven’t.
Fortunately for me, I have not dealt with any such incidents in the business since. And I think it is because all the projects I have been a part of have had women in positions of power, along with men who are feminists in their own right who have not abused their power. What I am most interested in now is combating the shame we go through that keeps us isolated and allows for harm to continue to be done. I wish I had known that there were women in the business I could have talked to. I wish I had known that there were ears to hear me. That justice could be served. There is clearly power in numbers. I thank the women who have spoken up and given me the strength to revisit this unfortunate moment in my past.
I want some kind of credit for how calm I’m staying about this. Seriously. When he stopped the sexual harassment, he continued to plain old harass her. Lupita is a goddess, and Metamaiden and I are ready to get out the pitchforks and rally the villagers. This. Must. Stop. Mira Sorvino is Hollywood royalty, and she was scared to death to say anything publicly against Weinstein, years later. Even her A+ list boyfriend wouldn’t protect her. This. Must. Stop. Asia Argento is being harassed by the people of her country, men and women, so badly that she needs to leave for her own mental health. This. Must. Stop. When will we learn to stand together and protect each other from real life villains, instead of protecting the evil-doer? Harvey Weinstein hurt women for decades. Eventually, men will get brave enough to come forward and talk about the ways he harassed and assaulted them, as well. Some already have, but, as with the women, the Weinsteins have been suppressing accusations for decades. Boys and girls, let’s stop sugarcoating and ignoring these actions when they’re committed by someone with influence. This. Must. Stop.
Not that brother Bob is much better: Bob Weinstein Accused of Sexual Harassment by TV Showrunner
In new Woody Allen news, in an interview with the BBC he said:
“The whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved. Tragic for the poor women that were involved, sad for Harvey that [his] life is so messed up. There’s no winners in that, it’s just very, very sad and tragic for those poor women that had to go through that.”
At least he showed some sympathy for the women after the fact. As with Oliver Stone, almost every news outlet posted a “clarification” within a day, retracting his original sentiments expressing sadness for Harvey Weinstein, which were clear in the original statements.
He admitted, in a roundabout way, that he’d heard stories about the harassment, but hadn’t taken them seriously. Even now, he’s insulting and dismissive:
“No one ever came to me or told me horror stories with any real seriousness. And they wouldn’t, because you are not interested in it. You are interested in making your movie. But you do hear a million fanciful rumors all the time. And some turn out to be true and some — many — are just stories about this actress, or that actor.”
Wow, what an *sshole. Rape and assault allegations are “fanciful rumors” that aren’t being told with any “real seriousness” because he’s “not interested in it.” Isn’t it lovely for him, that he doesn’t have to take these things seriously.
But the important thing is that we make sure that none of this affects Woody Allen:
“You also don’t want it to lead to a witch hunt atmosphere, a Salem atmosphere, where every guy in an office who winks at a woman is suddenly having to call a lawyer to defend himself,” Allen continued. “That’s not right either. But sure, you hope that something like this could be transformed into a benefit for people rather than just a sad or tragic situation.”
Yes, we certainly wouldn’t want to make sure that we root out every sexual harasser in the entertainment industry, would we Woody?
In related news, the NY Film Festival has cancelled the red carpet for the Saturday night (10/14/17) premiere of “alleged” child molester Woody Allen’s new film. The film was produced by Amazon Studios, former home of recently ousted “alleged” sexual harasser Roy Price. The New Yorker story that broke the allegations of rape and sexual harassment against Harvey Weinstein was written by Ronan Farrow, brother of Dylan Farrow, both of whom are Woody Allen’s children. Dylan Farrow is the child that Woody Allen “allegedly” sexually molested when she was a young child, before he had an affair with her teenage sister, Soon Yi, while he was in a long-term relationship with the children’s adoptive mother, former actress Mia Farrow. According to Deadline, the festival thought that letting the press near this stinking stew of quasi-incest and other sordid acts probably wasn’t a good idea right now.
Dylan Farrow has stuck to her story for 25 years. Woody Allen has had multiple affairs with women who were underaged when the relationship began. Maybe the allegations against him will finally be taken seriously by Hollywood. And those against Roman Polanski, and Bryan Singer, and…too many others to list. It’s as popular as playing golf.
Or it’ll be business as usual by Thanksgiving. What’ll it be, boys? Until you take it seriously, it won’t stop.