It’s the reaction to revelations on Weinstein and Bill Cosby that should interest observers more.
The horrifying details emerging from any number of women accusing Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, assault or rape are not too surprising given what was long suspected thanks to the seedy impression the film world has left on people down the ages. The problem isn’t only of unacceptable behaviour by a movie mogul demeaning women and reducing them to sex objects, but also of how silent Hollywood has been about such sex scandals, which became public only after people like Weinstein, thought of as saints, were shown to be the worst possible sinners. How men in positions of power exploited vulnerable women is a Hollywood serial that should carry sufficient lessons for all those young people worldwide yearning for a career in the spotlight. The list of domineering men accused of predatory behaviour, incidentally, includes President Donald Trump too.
It’s the reaction to revelations on Weinstein and Bill Cosby that should interest observers more. Weinstein was sacked by the movie company he helped found and which took dozens of stars to Oscar glory. It isn’t self-righteousness alone that’s behind such quick action like the Academy exiling the accused, with this very strong message: “The era of wilful ignorance and shameful complicity in sexually predatory behaviour and workplace harassment is over.” His wife is leaving Weinstein too, that just shows there are people ready to take the high moral ground on celebrities who have taken women for granted. Only by such public condemnation of offenders will any of them, including the most famous, be shamed and perhaps brought to book.