How to Stop the Next Harvey Weinstein
By Davit Outten, Contributing Writer
Harvey Weinstein has been sentenced to 23 years in prison for two counts of sexual assault (while being accused of many more). Bill Cosby’s recent efforts to to get his sex crime conviction overturned were denied.
These are men well known to the American people and the world, but they are not the only sexual predators in Hollywood, Washington D.C. and elsewhere who’ve taken advantage of positions of power to engage in predatory sexual behavior expecting to get away with it.
In the cases of Cosby and Weinstein both engaged in offensive behavior repeatedly and believed they would continue to get away with it. You can rest assured neither expected to go to prison. There are others who have done the same expecting to get away with it, which is why Cosby and Weinstein felt safe. They saw it as accepted Hollywood culture.
Harvey Weinstein’s 23 years sentence may result in some Hollywood culture change, but the real problem is much greater than just powerful men taking advantage of women. It’s the degradation of women.
Pornography turns sexual stimulation into a commodity like corn and soybeans. The future Harvey Weinsteins of the world are feeding their lust and imagining women to be mere objects of pleasure. They may be twelve-year-olds filling their minds with images of women submitting themselves to abuse (or possibly even being raped).
The MeTo movement rightly cries out for an end to sexual assault, but do they stop to consider how Harvey Weinstein became an infamous sex offender.?
Harvey learned to walk and talk like the rest of us. He grew up in Queens, New York the son of a Jewish diamond cutter. What turned him into a sex offender? What is turning thousands of youth into sex offenders today?
Where the #MeToo movement misses an opportunity is in helping to stop the creation of more Harvey Weinsteins. They shout, “No more getting away with abusing women,” but you don’t hear them shout, “No more feeding the lusts of boys and men with pornography.”
Pornography is like a How to Become Like Harvey Weinstein training manual. As New York boys the Weinstein brothers argued over who was better: Willie Mays or Mickey Mantle. They loved Westerns like Rio Bravo, Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. What happened?
In 1979 the brothers, Bob and Harvey (just 27 at the time), started Miramax Films, named after their mother Miriam and their father Max. They became the darling of Independent film distribution releasing movies like Sex, Lies and Videotape, Pulp Fiction and The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover (complete with a scene of cannibalism). Miramax became a magnet for jaded Academy Award nominations. They bought, promoted and distributed the kinds of movies that made Hollywood feel as if it had been fully set free from traditional American morality. It should not be a surprise that, as the virtual king of this movement, Harvey would act out in real life some of the morality promoted in his movies and given Academy Awards.
Harvey Weinstein’s 23 year sentence may cause some Hollywood producers to control their vile urges, but wouldn’t it be better if vile urges were never fed. There are many people in Hollywood who don’t have vile urges. There are good people making movies, but there are those (and have long been those) who do what gets Hollywood called Babylon.
There may be more exposures of some famous Hollywood personalities. It is justice to punish abusers, but just putting sexual predators in prison is not the solution.
The greater need is for culture change. It’s time to stop presenting women as sex objects to be played with for one’s pleasure. How men look at women is important. God made women as equal to men. They have brains as well as bodies. They have feelings. They’re entitled to respect and justice. Relationships between men and women should be respectful as human being to human being.
Pornography presents a very different view of what women are. It does not present them as equal to men. They’re presented as playthings that offer pleasure. Taken to it’s extreme women are seen as objects that can be bought. This is a very real and revolting trend. Governments now engage in police crackdowns that don’t seem to slow the demand.
One thing the women of the #MeToo movement need to realize is that their future attackers are being trained and fed by women who offer themselves in the pornography industry as examples of how women love to be abused. Granted some of these women are being abused as the films are made, but others accept playing such roles as a job.
Don’t just look around Hollywood wondering who the next executive or star will be who gets arrested. Harvey Weinstein was not born in Southern California. The next Harvey Weinstein could be growing up in your neighborhood rooting for your closest major league baseball team. He could be arguing with friends who is better Iron Man or Batman. He could be just learning to walk and uttering his first words.
We are the ones who teach boys about women. Will we teach that they’re equal and to respected as such or will we teach they’re sex objects that you learn to play with when you get to old to play with Legos.
The sexual revolution proudly proclaimed freedom from puritanical “stupidity,” but with freedom from morality you get immorality. The #MeToo movement is like putting a stop sign at the end of a drag strip. You invite racers to come tearing down the speedway of sexual freedom and then shout stop when the racers lust is flaming 300 miles per hour.
Let’s call for women to be seen as human beings and not just objects of lust.