Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 28 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 10/22/17

The Cure for Weinstein is a Cultural Change

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     (# of views)   18 comments
Author 76576
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Thomas Knapp

Project Runway
Project Runway
(Image by Wikipedia (commons.wikimedia.org))
  Details   DMCA

How many women did Harvey Weinstein victimize? When did he start down the continuum leading from Hollywood's shamefully tolerated "casting couch" overtures to increasingly flagrant sexual harassment, and finally (if we believe his accusers, as I think we should) open sexual assault? We'll probably never know.

But one thing we do know: There was a first time, a Victim Zero. While neither that victim nor the others should be blamed for what happened to them, it's worth asking why there followed a Victim One, and a Victim Two, and so forth, spanning decades, before Weinstein was finally brought low for his depredations. And why so many others remain in the shadows, sexually victimizing women and men, adults and children, with impunity.

We need a culture change. The current culture of planting seeds of fear -- the "stranger danger" mentality and such -- before victimization and offering sympathy after clearly isn't getting the job done. Instead of #MeToo after-the-fact pageantry, this problem calls for the inculcation of a strong, affirmative #NotMe attitude -- an unwillingness to be Victim Zero, or to remain silent as other victims inevitably follow.

What must be rooted out is the sickness in our culture that lets sexual predators leverage fear into opportunity to commit their crimes and shame into an ability hide those crimes.

It has to start with parents and extend to friends, mentors and communities. Our children need to be brought up to understand that there's nothing they can't bring to the rest of us, and that we will back them completely should they encounter someone who attempts to victimize them.

We have to shift the fear away from would-be victims and strike it into the hearts of would-be victimizers. We have to make it preemptively clear that we will always ostracize those who harass and punish those who assault, not those who are harassed or assaulted.

We must send our young people out into the world understanding that when they walk away from -- or, if necessary, run away from or defend themselves against -- a Harvey Weinstein, it will be Weinstein, not them, who pays the price. And while systems of criminal justice must and should presume innocence and work diligently to establish the truth, victims must know, to their very core, that they enjoy a starting presumption of belief from the rest of us.

The goal is simple, but this is a war. As Carl von Clausewitz pointed out, "everything in war is simple, but the simplest thing is difficult." It's not going to be easy. But I believe we can prevail, for ourselves and for our loved ones. Let's make a better world, a world in which our Harvey Weinsteins become outcasts, not billionaires.

 

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
Rate It | View Ratings

Thomas Knapp Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.


Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Hypocrisy Alert: Republicans Agreed with Ocasio-Cortez Until About One Minute Ago

Finally, Evidence of Russian Election Meddling ... Oh, Wait

Chickenhawk Donald: A Complete and Total Disgrace

The Nunes Memo Only Partially "Vindicates" Trump, But it Fully Indicts the FBI and the FISA Court

Aircraft Carriers: Give Truman and Ford a Burial at Sea

Political Parties Should Say What They Mean. The Libertarian Party Does.