UNITED STATES—Last week was a major blow to so many in Hollywood as news exploded with the countless sexual harassment and even allegations of rape against mega Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. Weinstein has disappeared from the world of Hollywood and is currently seeking treatment at a rehab facility in Arizona. However, the number of women and actresses who have come forward noting they have had awkward and disturbing interactions with the executive.
Such names include Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, Asia Argento, Rosanna Arquette, Rose McGowan, Mira Sorvino, Kate Beckinsale and the list goes on and on and on. I honestly wish so many women would have come forward so much sooner because it would have possibly led to a stop of this unspeakable behavior by Mr. Weinstein. I do understand why so many women didn’t come forward, because in the world of Hollywood if you speak wrong about someone who is in power it could be the end of one’s career. However, this is where a conversation needs to be forced to discuss this issue. Women and men have to speak up when they see bad behavior taking place. I mean you had so many people coming out sharing their tales about encounters of sexual harassment in the industry.
This is no secret, it has been taking place in the industry for years, for decades, and it’s now just seeing the light. It’s a shame because so many women likely endured incidents that we would never know about because they are no longer with us. Hollywood is an industry dictated by power, and it’s time that we force the industry to acknowledge it has a problem and something needs to be done to fix it. There is no surprise this industry is male dominated and many of the power players are male. We could get into the discussion of race, which is in its entirety such a massive issue, me attempting to tackle it in this column would not deliver any justice to the reader.
Weinstein has touted himself as being a sex addict and having issues, but I just CANNOT agree with that claim. This is continual behavior and it has happened for several decades. In my personal opinion, that is not someone who is an addict that is someone who is sick and has a major problem and got away with it for years. I cannot and will not believe that NO ONE knew what was transpiring with Harvey Weinstein. Rather they come forward or not will likely never be known, but other producers, directors and actors had to know about Weinstein’s behavior and I’m just thinking how different things would be if that person would have come forward and made it publicly known that a big issue is happening behind the scenes and it needs to be addressed.
Harvey is taking a beating, and I don’t feel sorry for him. He was booted from the Academy of Motion Picture and Sciences, and he is likely to see himself ousted from several guilds as well America. It has raised concerns by some who have argued that Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski who are members of the Academy and have been accused and in some cases found guilty of commenting such acts. I mean it’s a legit question, shouldn’t those guys be booted from the Academy as well. By allowing them to stick around it sort of says we’re slightly okay with them because of their artistic prowess. No, that is not a good enough argument people. Wrong is wrong and you cannot make excuses for bad behavior of such a high magnitude.
There were even rumblings that Weinstein had a contract that allowed for sexual harassment to transpire. Like am I crazy to think that is ludicrous and no one thought to voice that that is an issue to have such a clause in a contract? I mean just thinking of The Weinstein Company they were asking for a bevy of lawsuits that could easily put the company out of business, which many are beginning to speculate.
I think the thing that worries me the most is that so many people were shoulder to shoulder with this man, some who had really bad encounters with him. That is troubling to see, and I cannot even fathom what was going in their mind each and every time they interacted with this man. So the question that remains is rather the big fallout from Harvey Weinstein will change the culture in Hollywood?
Are we going to see a change in power dynamics, will women unite to say enough is enough with sexual harassment not only in the industry, but in the workplace period? These are questions that we can’t answer right at the moment, but I am indeed hoping that we fix this problem and we change the culture of how many are perceived. I swear I DO NOT want to hear another woman criticize another woman about possibly ‘asking for it’ because of the way they dress. NO, stop it, that’s wrong and you should NEVER do that. Your goal should be to empower women not to beat them down.