A fun exercise to do from time to time is to engage in the fantasy of who you would like at your perfect celebrity dinner party; the people you’d most want to spend one night with, hanging out, chatting, learning, and spending time together.
And don’t say your family or your spouse, that’s cheating. Unless your name is Tom Brady or anything Kardashian.
So, go ahead…who’s on your list?
One month ago, mine would have been:
Louis C.K. and Kevin Spacey. Ooopss
And here we are. Just weeks into what will ultimately become harassment-a-palooza, we’re all just waiting for our next favorite person to be indicted. Granted, much of this is just accusations, and I’m sure at some point (if it hasn’t happened already) there will be false ones…but so far, where there’s smoke, there’s obvious fire. Even the LAPD has had to confirm that literally dozens of investigations are underway in Hollywood (and that’s just what they’re willing to tell us).
The Hollywood stuff is to be expected in the abstract but when people you’ve come to truly enjoy, whose work you’ve admired, and whose persona has led you to tell yourself that he really seems like he might be one of the good guys is charged and seemingly indicted in the court of public opinion, it begins to make you question all sorts of things. For me, that was Kevin Spacey. There’s a guy I would have put on the top of my list of celebrities with the aforementioned qualities. Now he makes my skin crawl. No more going back and re-enjoying House of Cards seasons 1-5 for me. Then came Louis CK. Ugh. Now just imagine…Mike Rowe? Please for the love of God no.
When you really start to think about it, some of our household names come with certain understandings we’ve all accepted. For two decades, everyone with half a brain has known that Will Smith basically sleeps with every one of his female co-stars. And who can blame him? Eva Mendes? Gabrielle Union? Margot Robbie? Damn right…other than that whole “being married,” thing. But those of us who like Will have self-soothed by telling ourselves that it seems as though his wife, Jada, is in on it and ok with it, and hey, everyone’s consenting, so what’s the harm?
Denzel Washington has long had whispers of multiple affairs, but again…in the end, other than his wife, who’s he hurting? If simple infidelity were a disqualifier in America, we’d have no celebrities…or athletes, politicians, business owners, etc. etc. etc.
It’s when you add in the “ick,” factor of assault that things get ugly, and when it escalates to those who are underage it goes even further.
I will grant you that, for me anyway, there’s a huge difference between assault and harassment. I am not defending the latter, but I am concerned that we are conflating the two, and, also dumbing down what is actual harassment. We’ve even created what is now called “third party visual sexual harassment,” in the workplace. This is the asinine scenario of two co-workers engaging in a consensual, non-sexual hug of affection which somehow makes someone else in the room uncomfortable and that ninny can run to HR and get the two huggers in trouble. This is stupid beyond belief.
And, just for the record…this is not a sex problem…and guess what? It’s not a man problem either.
Uh-oh…that’s right…we’re about to touch the third rail of gender politics. Here we go…
When we’re talking about people taking advantage of their positions and influence and trying to utilize that to prey on those not in such similar statures, this is about power, period. Women do it too, there just, statistically, aren’t as many of them in such positions. Remember the epidemic of monster teachers (an industry of majority women workers) over the last decade? In which women would assault their underage students? That’s the definition of a powerful person preying on someone vulnerable. It happens in the workplace, too, and we’ll hear about it soon so before any of you feminazis start celebrating the further destruction of men in America, slow your tits.
Based on all of the definitions outlined for us over the last few weeks, I have absolutely been sexually harassed in my professional life. Two women of power, in positions of authority over me when I was in very young in my career, made it very clear to me that they were attracted to me and that by acting on that, I could really help my career. I didn’t, but I’ve felt it, and don’t you dare tell that because I’m a man that my stories are any different than a rich Hollywood movie mogul making it clear to a young, impressionable, hungry aspiring actress that she has the same opportunity. #METOO.
So grab some popcorn and sit back and watch the carnage. We haven’t even begun to scratch the surface on this nightmare and as we do, so many more people will be exposed. Who is your nightmare celebrity to be told that all you thought or hoped of them is now tainted by assaulting minions? Tom Hanks? Oprah? Taylor Swift?
Remember, there are so many industries to come…we’ve barely scratched the surface of media figures and soon we’ll get to singers, athletes, celebrity pastors, and television personalities. Wanna wake up and hear that Ellen has assaulted half a dozen women on her staff? I don’t…but nothing will shock me moving forward.