Lena Dunham calls for men to denounce Harvey Weinstein
Lena Dunham has called out men in Hollywood for their âdeafening silenceâ in the wake the sexual harassment allegations made against Harvey Weinstein.
In a New York Times op-ed, the Girls creator and star claimed that while Weinstein is the most âpowerful man in Hollywood to be revealed as a predatorâ and his alleged behavior is âa microcosm of what has been happening in Hollywood since always and of what workplace harassment looks like for women everywhere.â
âA liberal-leaning industry, we have been quick to condemn Bill OâReilly, Roger Ailes and, yes, the president. We do not accept sexual abuse as âlocker room talk,'â she wrote, citing President Donald Trumpâs defense of his graphic, sexist comments in a 2005 Access Hollywood video. âSo why the deafening silence, particularly from the industryâs men, when one of our own is oute d as having a nasty taste for humiliating and traumatizing women?â
While actors Seth Rogen and Mark Ruffalo and directors James Gunn, Scott Derrickson, and Kevin Smith have spoken out about Weinstein in recent days, much of the criticism against the former executive has been expressed by prominent women in Hollywood, including Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet, Judi Dench, and Julianne Moore. Late-night comedy shows hosted by men avoided the topic on Friday, and reports surfaced that Saturday Night Live cut Weinstein references from Weekend Update and a sketch because they werenât playing well in dress rehearsal. (John Oliver did take on the Weinstein allegations during Last Week Tonight on Sunday.)
âThe reason I am zeroing in on the men is that they have the least to lose and the most power to shift the narrative, and are probably not dealing with the same level of collective and personal trauma around these allegations,â Dunham explained in her op- ed. âBut here we are, days later, waiting for Mr. Weinsteinâs most powerful collaborators to say something. Anything. It wouldnât be just a gift to the women he has victimized, but a message to the women who are watching our industry closely. They need a signal that we do not approve of the abuse of power and hatred of women that is the driving force behind this kind of behavior.â
Dunham concluded by noting the continued silence is a reason why women still struggle to come forward and speak out: âHollywoodâs silence, particularly that of men who worked closely with Mr. Weinstein, only reinforces the culture that keeps women from speaking. When we stay silent, we gag the victims. When we stay silent, we condone behavior that none of us could possibly believe is O.K.â
Read the full op-ed here.
Last week, the New York Times published an exposÃ© of Weinsteinâs alleged sexual harassment, which included on-record comments from actress Ashley J udd. Weinstein issued a statement to the Times in response to the report, saying in part, âI came of age in the â60s and â70s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different. That was the culture then. I have since learned itâs not an excuse, in the office â" or out of it. To anyone. I realized some time ago that I needed to be a better person and my interactions with the people I work with have changed. I appreciate the way Iâve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it.â
In response to the Times story, Weinstein lawyer Charles Harder said he was preparing a suit against the publication. âThe New York Times published today a story that is saturated with false and defamatory statements about Harvey Weinstein. It relies on mostly hearsay accounts and a faulty report, apparently stolen from an employee personnel file, which has been debunked by 9 different eyewitnesse s. We sent the Times the facts and evidence, but they ignored it and rushed to publish. We are preparing the lawsuit now. All proceeds will be donated to womenâs organizations.â
Since last week, other women have come forward with allegations against Weinstein, including reporter Lauren Sivan, who claimed Weinstein exposed himself to her.
Speaking to NBCâs Megyn Kelly on Monday, Sivan said she was compelled to speak out after reading Weinsteinâs statement. âHis apology was the final straw for me,â she said. âEnough is enough with this guy. There was no remorse, there was no even acknowledgment of the type of behavior that was going on. If he did this with me, whoâs just a stranger, who is not an actress in Hollywood and doesnât need anything from him, I can only imagine how many other women this has happened to.âShow Full ArticleSource: Google News