There has been a lot of headline news over the past few weeks about a certain producer who is accused of various sexual assaults over a fairly lengthy period of time. I have no idea what he did or did not do, and no doubt these things will come out later, if you care. Yesterday there was another story about a well-known actor who has also been accused of things with a 14 year old boy. His response was, basically, I don’t remember, it was a long time ago, I was drunk and anyway I am gay. I have no idea what that all means, either, and my level of interest is fairly minimal. Note that I am NOT defending anyone, just not that interested. If these people really did bad things, they must be punished.
I have a few thoughts, mainly coming from the Jimmy Savile incidents some years ago. Savile, of course, was dead. No-one spoke out about him when he was alive, in a way that anyone took notice of anyway. JS could not defend himself. Once the first allegations came out, it was like a flood gate. Same in the first example here. Many of Savile’s accusers were investigated. It was shown that some had simply fabricated stories in an attempt to get money. It may be, I don’t know, that the same has happened here, that people are saying they too were sexually assaulted but maybe they weren’t, they just want some fame and some money. I don’t know, but if there is even one person who is simply making up a story to ‘cash in’, then it devalues all the others.
I was involved in a conversation about this the other day. Someone remarked that more than 50% of women reported sexual harrassment in the workplace. I asked a simple question, what does that mean. There was a fairly lengthy discussion about this. One vaguely known tv actor has said that he was sexually harrassed when someone touched his arm. My friends seemed not to know. Does it have a clear definition?
My friends concluded that, if you FELT you had been sexually harrassed, then you HAD BEEN sexually harrassed. It didn’t have to be real at all.
I am not trying to diminish these events, if they have occurred, but some of it seems a bit mad to me.