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« Bill Paxton (1955-2017)| Main| Beauty Break: The Men of Moonlight »
Tuesday
Feb 28 2017

Only one "woke"at a time

by Deborah Lipp

One of Oscar's best moments.Iranian-American engineer Anousheh Ansari accepting on behalf of protesting Asghar Farhadi

If I may use this year's vernacular,Oscars are woke.亚博主页Except,well,they can only be woke about one thing at a time.Last year after the Oscars,亚博主页Iwrote aboutthe powerful "spotlight"(see what I did there?) the Oscars brought to the issue of rape and sexual violence.亚博主页And I'm going to acknowledge,that yes,that was amazing.

But rape is so last year.

This year was all about diversity and inclusion.Those are wonderful topics,those are topics that matter to me.The diversity was beautiful to see.The powerful immigrant voices—from Iran,Mexico,and Italy,among other nations—moved me.It was important that people of color were not merely supporting characters—even though the winners were in the Supporting categories,they supportedother people of color...

But it's only been a year,and hey,Collective Oscars Consciousness,亚博主页rape is still with us.  Violence against women is still with us.And you know where it is (among other places)?In the Oscar audience,and on the Oscar stage.


Yes,I'm talking about Casey Affleck,who settled two sexual harassment lawsuits out of court,and yet was wildly applauded by the same (more or less) audience who cheered for Roman Polanski,convicted rapist,not all that long ago,and who clamor to work with Woody Allen.

I'm talking about Mel Gibson,with his domestic violence conviction,sitting in the audience,applauded and praised and nominated.

It all started when I got an IM from my sister:

I can't help but be disappointed that the creator of the OJ documentary give a lengthy shout out to victims of police violence and racially motivated crimes,but not a word about victims of domestic violence.

Once you notice that,you notice Affleck.And Gibson.And you notice that an issue that was front-and-center exactly one year earlier was effectively disappeared.My sister suggested that caring a lot about violence against women with those two men the subject of some of the evening's adulation would have seemed…tacky.That maybe people just decided to sweep it under the rug out of a strange sense of politeness?

But I'm bitter enough to toy with the notion that caring about sexual violence never mattered to the people who forefronted it last year.

That's not quite true.Brie Larson,who was so supportive of victims of sexual assault a year ago,hasn't forgotten.*


But here's the world we live in: We elected a self-admitted sexual abuser,and accused rapist,president.We give Oscars to convicted rapists,亚博主页accused child molesters,and sexual harassers.** We nominate convicted spousal abusers and welcome them as great,warm-hearted members of "our community".

I don't think Oscar forgot about violence against women.I think they got too close to the fire and jumped back,lest the heat force them to take their ideas seriously enough to consider the consequences.Because the real consequences,if you think about it really hard,might be not inviting your buddy Casey over for the celebration.

*You'll see articles saying Larson refused to hug Affleck at the Oscars,亚博主页which is untrue,but she definitely didn't applaud.

**As long as they're white.

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Reader Comments (48)

I love this.Especially the asterisks.Thanks for writing.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

I do have a huge problem with this posting.You call Casey Affleck an accused sexual harasser and Woody Allen an accused child molester,which may both be technically true (they have been accused,after all),but neither has been convicted of the crime.Affleck settled out of court whilst denying the claims (and he seems to have co-workers defending his conduct) and accusing the women of extortionist behavior,and Woody Allen has in fact been exonerated by the police investigating the allegations of child abuse thoroughly for months,coming to the conclusion that the alleged child abuse (which has been brought up by an angered Mia Farrow in the middle of a heated custody battle,famously a breeding ground for false allegations of child abuse) hasn't happened.

I do care about sexual violence against women.But I care about slandering,too.If we take every accusation at face value,even if there is a clear (financial or other) motive for lying about what really happened,yes even if the accusation has been thoroughly debunked,we make it way too easy to ruin an artist (or any human being,really - accusations of rape can destroy any man who has something to lose) forever.

Do you want everyone who has ever been accused of sexual violence (or any kind of violence) to be a persona non grata forever,even if he has been acquitted of all charges?

Sidebar:
An Oscar nomination is not an appreciation of an unblemished personal life.It's an appreciation of art,which can be appreciated (and even enjoyed) even if it comes from terrible people.Roman Polanski is a child rapist,but does that make him a bad director?Brigitte Bardot is a bigotted racist,but does that make her a bad actress?And if you want to exclude convicted (or accused?) criminals from receiving accolades,where do you draw the line?Peter Sellers was by all accounts a terrible person to be around.Should you never honour him for his work,either?

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMrW

Co-sign on MrW's post.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMDA

Someone's personal life (i.e.,being a rapist,racist,homophobe,etc.) may have no impact their talent as an artist,but we all have the right to not reward someone's work if we don't agree with their stances or actions.Yes,you can separate the art from the artist,but you don't have to support them.

There are so many actors/directors/writers/singers who are vastly talented and don't sexually assault women,hold racist beliefs,or think LGBTQ folks are an abomination,so why waste time on the ones who do?I think it's up to everyone to make their own decision to support them or not,but you can't fault people for not wanting to give accolades or platforms to people like Affleck,Gibson,or Allen.

It says a lot about how deeply misogynistic our society is that many people in it think accusing someone of sexual assault is just as heinous as actually sexually assaulting someone.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterSean Diego

Co-sign on MrW too.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterCraver

Co-sign on MrW too.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterEndora

I co-sign Deborah Lipp and Sean Diego...and I find it very telling that 4/6 individuals would bother responding to a post by a woman saying "hey,sexual assault is still an issue"just to find fault with the author/one aspect of the argument rather than the heart of what she's conveying.

I liked Casey Affleck's performance a lot but I think everyone is aware of how politics/campaigning/personal character play into awards decisions so to rush to his defense (having not been there or knowing the situation but constantly referencing lying/financial motivations of accusers) is specious.Especially when it does not play out equally for all (personal character accusations certainly hurt Birth of Nation and Nate Parker...and there was a lot of truth behind Viola's "I took all the pictures..."comment at the globes or eye roll about Jared Leto's "method acting"/harassment of co-stars.Not everyone can face personal criticism and still emerge rewarded).

Deborah,I think your comment about the OJ documentary acceptance speech was especially interesting.I think it's a high-wire act accepting an award with that subject matter--and he did shout-out to Ron and Nicole (even if it seemed forced/icky)--but I think there was still room for an acknowledgement of both issues (racially-motivated/institutional violence and sexual violence).The omission does seem striking.

Great post with a lot of interesting issues presented in a very reasonable way,despite skepticism in the responses.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered Commentercatbaskets

Co-sign Sean Diego

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJB

@ Sean Diego:
I'm not saying accusing someone wrongly of sexual assault is just as heinous as sexual assault itself.It is heinous in a different way,and these two cannot be compared.

Sexual assault is usually a crime committed by impulse from a position of power (either the actual power of being somebody's authority figure,or the power that is mere physical strength),and humiliating and devastating the victim (rather than actual sexual relief) is what the rapist usually is thriving on.False accusation on the other hand is usually a crime comitted by calculation,and more often than not from a position of weakness or perceived weakness (though sometimes just as a means of extortion).

Both can destroy lives,though certainly in very different ways: Rape can destroy a person on a psychological level,false accusation on a social level.

And playing false accusations down or saying they don't (or barely ever) happen is not helping victims of actual sexual abuse.False accusations do happen,and every woman who falsely accuses a man of rape makes it harder for actual victims of sexual abuse to be heard and to be believed.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMrW

There are better articles about this complicated issue.This one is so inaccurate and patronizing.Please don't turn this site into this.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

@ catbaskets:
I'm not finding any fault with pointing out that sexual violence is an issue.I do find find fault in naming Casey Affleck and (especially) Woody Allen as perpetrators of sexual violence,two men who have never been convincted (and in the case of Woody Allen have been as positively exonerated as he possibly could be).

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMrW

Thank you for this post and discussion,Deborah.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

MrV,read more about the Allen case.Why The judge decided not to go on with it.What he really thought and has publicly said.Read what the nannies said.How Woody was banned from the school.

I'm sorry,you are just accusing two women- Mia and Dylan.Accusing women to project a (rich white straight powerful) man.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

And say what you want- supporting Polanski is DISGUSTING.No excuses.

I also don't know why actors or directors shouldn't face the same consequences everyone else does.Doctors,lawyers,nurses,contractors,engineers,architects,TEACHERS,social workers,drivers,accountants....they would never work again.

But oh Polanski is soooo special.....he made movies....ooohhhh,lets suspend international laws so he can attend movie festivals and have his ass kissed.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

Co-sign on MrW.Let's reserve for the bile for the proven convicted sex offenders and not pander to hearsay.Larson shamed herself this season.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterLuke

It's ludicrous to consider Woody Allen "exonerated".Allen says he was exonerated by a report the judge dismissed as not credible.Going after Mia as an angry ex only makes sense if you completely ignore Dylan's own voice in the matter.His victim,now an adult,maintains,and has never wavered in maintaining,that Allen molested her.Here's a good article.

Affleck was not convicted.He settled out of court while denying the charges (which is what always happens when you settle out of court).

Do I want sexual abusers to be persona non grata?Yes,as a matter of fact I do.But as long as we instead give them Oscars and elect them president,亚博主页I reserve the right to be untroubled by "slander"which does no harm to career or reputation.It is laughable to suggest that false accusations destroy lives when Donald Trump sits in the White House.

Lots and lots of people are "against"sexual assault while offering enormous concern about the accused,yet expressing nothing but disdain for the accusers.You care about sexual assault while implying that Affleck's accusers are gold diggers.Because those are the choices -- either Affleck committed assault or the women are after his money.Despite the fact that women's lives are often destroyed by coming forward,their honesty and decency and motives questioned,while virtually nothing happens to the men.

This is the atmosphere in our society -- that women must clear this enormously high bar in order to be heard.How many women had to accuse Bill Cosby before people started to think,hey,maybe something really happened?Dozens?

The fact that assault allegations are heard with so much doubt makes it incredibly hard to prosecute at all,let alone convict.And then the accusers are faulted for not bringing charges.Or the lack of conviction is seen as "proof"that the women lied.

Crime experts,including the FBI,find that false allegations of rape are at about the same level as false allegations of other crimes (robbery,for example) -- between 3 and 8 percent.Yet in studies,people estimate that rape accusations are false about half the time.There's always some real rape out there,some imaginary rape,that people are sympathetic about.But when a real accuser comes forward,in this case,this woman,well,she's just not believable.She's a gold digger.She's angry.She has motives.

The fact is,it's AWFUL to accuse someone of sexual assault,because there's always a host of well meaning hand-wringers lining up to tell you that you're destroying someone's life.There's harassment.Accusers in some cases have had to leave town because of relentless harassment because they "ruined"some "nice boy's"life.Yet somehow,women still do step forward.Maybe that's because they're usually (92% or more of the time,according to the FBI) telling the truth.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

"Sexual assault is usually a crime committed by impulse from a position of power"

Not true.Sexual assault is quite often calculated and planned meticulously.

<>There are better articles about this complicated issue.This one is so inaccurate and patronizing.

Peggy Sue,I won't defend my tone,if you find me patronizing,that's your right.I'm an infrequent contributor to TFE (and have been contributing for quite a few years,the site isn't suddenly being "turned"),so I'm easy to avoid.But please do tell me what part you find inaccurate.

You may think I'm patronizing and a bad writer,but I don't think there's a single inaccuracy in the essay.If there is one,I will happily apologize and correct it.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Deborah,lets not forget who Casey is- ben's brother,Matt's childhood friend and at the time,Joaquin Phoenix's brother in law.Going against him was going against all these very powerful people,in an industry in which contacts,relationships and networking are majorly important.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

Extortion (blackmail) is illegal.Whether or not what you are using to extort money from someone is true or not,it is still a crime.So if the women accusing Affleck were extortionists,why did he settle instead of filing charges against them?Or face his accusers in court,if they were only lying to get his money?They got his money anyway...

Just wondering.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

I'm leaving this discussion now.Anyone who considers it "laughable"that false accusation destroy lives (because,hey,Trump) is probably not interested in a serious discussion anyway and just wants to postulate truths (which is regrettable,considering the delicate subject,which needs to be approached differentiated).

I could tell you enough examples of people who lost their jobs,their freedom,and their will to live (because being in prison as an alledged or convicted rapist or child molester is no fun at all) due to charges of rape that have been proven to be lies.It's actually part of my job that I have to deal with people on both ends of the spectrum (victims of sexual abuse,rapists,but also people falsly accused) on a regular basis.Actual people,not news stories I heard about and studies that are published in the sources I tend to read.

But something tells me I'd only be wasting my time.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMrW

MrW,it goes without saying that you're the only person in this conversation with personal and professional knowledge of rape and rape accusation.I bow to your superior sarcasm.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

I think it's unfortunate that this conversation eventually evolves into a "you're either with the accused or with the survivor"type narrative.

The way we treat sex crimes,assault,harassment,etc,socially and legally is ridiculous.The way we shame and antagonize victims is horrible and every reasonable person should be concerned about it and should be working toward a reality that encourages people to report these crimes and that supports them once they do.

If someone thinks Affleck should be persona non grata,or should be disqualified from awards or should never work again,I'm not going to tell them that that's not a valid position.

But I still just can't get behind the idea that says "false accusations of X are very rare,so we can feel free to assume everyone accused of X is guilty."regardless of what "X"is.I just can't do it.I believe the statistics that show false accusations are rare,but to me presumption of guilt isn't something I can tell myself is okay.

Now if Casey Affleck had lost the award because of these accusations,I wouldn't have felt bad for him.He's not owed an award.And people have a right to vote based on whatever motivates them.But taking the fact that he won the award as a sign that voters don't care about sexual violence,I think is a bit unfair to them.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterRobert A

.But taking the fact that he won the award as a sign that voters don't care about sexual violence,I think is a bit unfair to them.

Robert,that's a reasonable concern.I don't expect or require everyone to share my vehemence on this issue.

But look at it in the aggregate.As a voting body of X number of people,a large number of them were willing to overlook credible (not proven,but credible and,shall we say,likely) sexual assault allegations because they like him,they like the performance,they like his brother and his buddy,and/or they don't believe the victims.

And that's the pattern.It's impossible to live in our world and not see the pattern unless we really believe that women are rarely assaulted,or we just don't look.Over and over,in all walks of life,from Hollywood to the presidency to high school football to college swim teams,EVERYWHERE,the value of the individual accused is considered higher than the individual accusing.

If we don't notice this pattern and acknowledge it,and have some concern about it,and be committed to finding a way to change it,we do victims,and society,an enormous disservice.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Deborah Lipp - I'm with you all the way when it comes to prejudice against rape and spousal abuse victims,among ordinary people as well as in the judicial system.It's horrible and inexcusable.It can be changed,though - it has in my country.

But that is absolutely no excuse for slandering men.If you just want justice for one gender that's just as sexist as if you hade been a man,shrugging off women's rights.

Personally,I'm also of the opinion that people who have been convicted and paid their dues should be welcomed back into society.

And: ars gratia artis.

I think Mr W had some very good points.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterGena

Oh,and lets not forget the mob behaviour Ben&Matt - and their people-had throughout all awards season.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

Mel Gibson has loudly and frequently apologized for his behavior and taken productive steps to put his life back together.If his sincere contrition is worthless and always will be,then I guess you won't see my point.

But if you believe that people can recover and rebuild lives of dignity and purpose,why isn't Mel Gibson entitled to forgiveness?Mel always gets lumped in with folks who deny/evade/cover up their misdeeds but I think he's faced them admirably for 10+ years.

People who get sober don't get to choose the mess they inherit.Addiction is more than just a compulsion to use substances...it disfigures value systems,reality and human behavior.People don't end up on the side of the road screaming incoherent obscenities at cops because that's how they planned for their day to go.He was very sick and he's gotten well and I think that's what everyone with an ugly past should aim for.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterHayden

Y'all wanna pile on this post and make excuses for all these toxic men who use their power to attack and demean women,and act like the legal system is actually set up to punish men who abuse women.

It is not.Stop making excuses.Stop saying "Well,Casey's buds think he's a nice guy..."

STOP.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJacob D

I also don't want to be understood as making excuses for him...Mel Gibson deserved to be held to account,and I believe he was.

I just see Roman Polanski running from justice for 50 years and acting like he did nothing wrong,and by comparison it seems like Mel faced and accepted his consequences the way a person should.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterHayden

Mel Gibson has loudly and frequently apologized for his behavior and taken productive steps to put his life back together.

Much as I pay attention to gossip,I have to say I've never seen any of this.I'm not saying it doesn't exist.I have just never seen it.

Googling "Mel Gibson apology"brings up a published apology from 2006,two articles that reference the 2006 apology,and an article about an appearance on Colbert in which Gibson adamantly and angrily refused to apologize.These all relate to the anti-Semitism.Nothing about the domestic violence.Googling "Mel Gibson remorse"brings up people talking about him,but nothing he said.So I honestly don't know what you're referring to here.

FWIW,no oneis "entitled"to forgiveness.Forgiveness is something you can freely choose to give,or not.I believe people are entitled to "pay their debt to society",as the saying used to go,and then no longer be punished -- e.g.former felons should be allowed to vote -- but forgiveness is a different animal entirely.I choose who I do and do not forgive -- forgiveness is an act of the heart and spirit.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Let's not get into the fact that actresses such as Winona Ryder and Meg Ryan were forbidden from having careers because of shoplifting or an affair,but men can assault,rape,molest and they are lauded and celebrated- as long as they are white,obviously.

(Russel Crowe was having an on-set affair with Meg Ryan as much as she was having one with him,and came out of the whole episode without a bruise)

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

co-sign MrW and his army of co-signers

Putting Affleck and (especially!) Allen in the same box as Polanski or even Gibson is just so dangerous,unproductive and - in my opinion - hurts a very important cause.

I get very angry when Affleck defenders accuse the women who sued him of 'trying to destroy his career'.And while it's both stupid and impossible for me to form some sort of definitive judgment with that case,I am indeed 95% inclined to believe every single thing those two women assert and 100% eager to avoid minimising the impact of rape culture (while still keeping it very distinct from rape).

But pretending the case isn't at least a little bit complex and equating sexual harrassment with rape...- I just feel like that plays into the dangerously persuasive talking points of unapologetic misogynists and "men's rights warriors".

And when a person brings Woody Allen's name into any one of these discussions and treats his as some sort of unambiguous case of rape (!) just automatically makes me switch off from the rest of whatever that person is trying to say.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered Commentergoran

Really well-considered,beautifully written piece,Deborah.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterKieran Scarlett

Thank you for the thoughtful post,Deborah.

No one's saying Casey Affleck,Nate Parker,and Woody Allen need to be put in jail.We're saying the Academy and the movie industry should be circumspect in celebrating them as artists given their visibility,cultural power,and positions as role models.Insisting that they were never found guilty or liable by a court of law isn't really responsive because legal exculpation doesn't guarantee moral,social,and economic immunity.Yes,there should be respect for the rule of law,but it shouldn't be so rigid as to require a conviction before a person in the public sphere can even be criticized (or,at the very most,not honored).

Two real-life examples,with nuances that demand more thoughtful examination than just "but they weren't convicted"and "false accusations are devastating": A software engineer accused her former managers at Uber of sexually harassing her.Detailed accounts are available online if you care to look.Media scrutiny is intense and #DeleteUber has resurfaced.Assuming those managers can be identified,is Uber justified in firing them,even if the engineer decides not to press charges?How about deny them promotions or revoke "employee of the month"awards?

Bill Cosby is still presumed innocent in the eyes of the law.Is Spelman College justified--before Cosby has been convicted--in stripping the Cosby name from one of its buildings,even though the building is technically named after his wife,a major donor to the College?

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPercy

I also want to say I'm not equating sexual harrassment with rape -- I'm saying both are a product of rape culture.And whether or not Woody Allen raped Dylan Farrow depends on the laws at the time of the state of Connecticut,where the (alleged) child molestation occurred.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Thank you for this post,Deborah.This voluminous conversation here shows that the topic needs to be in the public eye more.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJames from Ames

Omg bless you Deborah!I've been bothered by this for some time now.For me it's not about whether or not you like their work.By all means you can love it for all I care.For me it's the celebrating,giving them awards etc.They're already rich and get paid for their work,do we have to be so extra.Let's be honest if it's a teacher,lawyer etc who had allegations like these would they even still be working???

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterNikki

I love how some people are bothered by her putting Affleck and Allen in the mix,but only a few mentione Nate Parker with them....hmmm.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterFarrah

"I can't help but be disappointed that the creator of the OJ documentary give a lengthy shout out to victims of police violence and racially motivated crimes,but not a word about victims of domestic violence."

Edelman directly led into that statement by tributing Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.His point (and the point of the movie) was clearly that a murderer got off because people were fed up with years of brutality.You have 45 seconds (officially,at least) to give an acceptance speech.I'm not going to fault a guy for failing to mention something that wasn't the thesis of his film,opting instead for something that was.

February 28,2017 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

To all the principled legalists here,why is no one jumping to Nate Parker's defense or urging the benefit of the doubt for Bill Cosby as he awaits trial?Why cast aspersion on Casey Affleck's and Woody Allen's accusers but not Nate Parker's (RIP)?How do you reconcile being so concerned for the well-being of the falsely accused with your apparent lack of outrage for the seriously damaged career of an individual who was acquitted of all charges?If it's because rape is more serious than sexual harassment,shouldn't you be all the more vigorous in standing up for him,since being falsely accused of rape should also be more serious than being falsely accused of sexual harassment?Or have you concluded,despite his victories in court,that Nate Parker was at least partly deserving of the scorn heaped upon him,enough to derail his career,even though you find it unconscionable that anyone would attempt to do the same to Casey Affleck or Woody Allen?

To be clear,I don't think Nate Parker deserves to be defended,either.Sometimes,the art can't fully be separated from the artist.I just don't think it helps anyone to pretend otherwise.

March 1,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPercy

"Let's be honest if it's a teacher,lawyer etc who had allegations like these would they even still be working???"

I am attorney,and I can assure you that lawyers who face these types of sexual harassment accusations keep their jobs all the time.I assume you have heard of Clarence Thomas.

March 1,2017 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

"To all the principled legalists here,why is no one jumping to Nate Parker's defense or urging the benefit of the doubt for Bill Cosby as he awaits trial?"

Because we all hate black people.

All of us.Black people.We despise them.We want them all in jail.And we want Trump to personally put them there.

There.Did that give you the tingle you were after?

Meantime - the actual reason I would never jump to Parker's or Cosby's defence is the reason I would never jump to Polanski's....Because I hate Polish people too!

Kidding.

The reason is,because the circumstances in Polanski's,Parker's and Cosby's cases are far far far faaaarrr less murky/ambiguous than in Allen's,and because (unlike in Affleck's case) their behaviour involved actual physical violence.

Meantime,I just wanna say again,in 'defending' Affleck,I don't want to minimise the toxicity and horror of rape culture.Just because it's not actual rape,that doesn't make it somehow forgivable.

March 1,2017 | Unregistered Commentergoran

I'm late to this post and it probably won't be read,and sadly Mr.W had already stated he would rather leave than hear other opinions.I want say thank you to Deborah for this article and how much it means to me.I am a sexual assault survivor.I want to share what this year has meant to me.The election of trump showed me how little people,men and women care about victims of sexual assault.That the instinct is to rush to disbelief,an attack of the victims,and downplaying it.I personally experienced those things when I tried to get justice for my own assault.(I was unsuccessful).It is a societal rot and shame.Movies are my escape,and my decades long love of Oscar season was the distraction I needed.Only with Affleck,and Mel Gibson,it was a constant reminder that for white men,if they are determined to be talented or important,the women they have hurt are not important.As for Affleck,he was not exonerated,he settled (just as trump settled that Trump U case...) it would mean that two subordinate females,working behind the scenes,one a cinematographer!In an industry notoriously hard for women,made up very specific stories whole cloth?They would jeopardize an already hostile industry with limited opportunity for them just to make it up?Affleck had no one to vouch for him?I have seen men abuse this power over and over again.When people,including Nathaniel,argue for separating art from artist,at a certain point you are saying that art is more important than their behavior.Affleck now gets to enjoy more prestige and clout in an industry those two women are unlikely to get to work in again.This year has been beyond disheartening.If you are white and male you will be fine,whether Trump or Affleck or Gibson,or even Brock Turner.Their victims may never be.

March 1,2017 | Unregistered CommenterS

"Because we all hate black people....Did that give you the tingle you were after?"

Actually,kind of,but not for the reason you'd expect.I don't care if you are or aren't a proud racist,in jest or otherwise.What's more telling is how completely (and perhaps deliberately) you missed the point.My questions weren't intended to ferret out the klansmen among us.They were directed at people who don't consider themselves racist or sexist,but nonetheless have implicit biases that they're convinced are principled beliefs.But,in a way,the fact that you think your comment is in any way responsive to mine illustrates the problem.

@S,thank you for your comment.You may not read my response,but I appreciate you.I feel the same way about the myth of separating the art from the artist.In practice,it's never consistently applied and often used to overlook or celebrate vile behavior.The aftermath of the Woody Allen fiasco in 2014 was very disappointing to me as a fan of this site.I don't mean to single out this site or Nathaniel,but I really thought he,as one of the more thoughtful writers out there,would be more measured in his apologism.

March 1,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPercy

The porn industry is fueled a great deal by human trafficking - you can't support both.But I bet many of these nominees watch porn.If we called out every one for mistakes there would be no Oscar ceremony.

March 2,2017 | Unregistered CommenterTodd

S,I'm here,I read and appreciated what you wrote.

I "separate art from artist"inasmuch as I tell the truth about art.Affleck's performance was pretty great.Annie Hall is probably the greatest romantic comedy ever made,Rosemary's Baby is flat-out genius.

Knowing that these things are true doesn't mean I abandon my principles.I do not choose to give my energy or money to rapists and abusers.There isn't a rule that says I have to.I don't see all the movies every year,so I can skip some for reasons of principle as easily as I skip some for lack of time.

March 2,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Todd -- "mistakes"?Sexual assault is a "mistake"?

Forgetting to set the alarm is a mistake.Overcooking the meat is a mistake.Sexual assault is a deliberate act.

March 2,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp

Thank you Percy and Deborah.And I feel the exact same way!Affleck was very good in Manchester.Annie Hall and Rosemary's baby are flat out perfect movies,but I won't contribute my money to either creator ever again.And the industry certainly should reward them with the highest honors.

And gee thanks,Todd.Glad to know they guy who sexually assaulted me just made a mistake!You sound just like his friends who wrote "c**t and b***h"in permanent marker all over my dorm room door!

March 2,2017 | Unregistered CommenterS

Wow.Reading a lot of these comments really shows you exactly WHY rape is underreported and very rarely goes to trial..

March 3,2017 | Unregistered CommenterK

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