Harvey Weinstein, Democrat mega-donor and Hollywood celebrity, has come under fire in the past week after stories broke about sexual misconduct with women in his circle of contact. As investigators have dug deeper, the scandal has only gotten worse.
As we have reported over the past week, Weinstein was accused of sexual misconduct by several women who revealed their allegations to The New York Times.
In interviews, eight women described varying behavior by Mr. Weinstein: appearing nearly or fully naked in front of them, requiring them to be present while he bathed or repeatedly asking for a massage or initiating one himself. The women, typically in their early or middle 20s and hoping to get a toehold in the film industry, said he could switch course quickly — meetings and clipboards one moment, intimate comments the next. One woman advised a peer to wear a parka when summoned for duty as a layer of protection against unwelcome advances.
We later revealed that Weinstein had also dropped a big monetary donation to a Manhattan District Attorney who shortly thereafter declined to pursue charges against him.
As bad as that was, the scandal just exploded, as three women have now accused him of rape, and new audio has emerged of him talking about groping a beauty pageant finalist to her face.
On Tuesday morning, The New Yorker reported that the three women who came forward, actress Asia Argento and former aspiring actress Lucia Evans, along with a third woman, have some forward with the allegations. But it just gets worse as more victims, and witnesses, finally step forward.
Sixteen former and current executives and assistants at Weinstein’s companies told me that they witnessed or had knowledge of unwanted sexual advances and touching at events associated with Weinstein’s films and in the workplace. They and others describe a pattern of professional meetings that were little more than thin pretexts for sexual advances on young actresses and models. All sixteen said that the behavior was widely known within both Miramax and the Weinstein Company. Messages sent by Irwin Reiter, a senior company executive, to Emily Nestor, one of the women who alleged that she was harassed at the company, described the “mistreatment of women” as a serial problem that the Weinstein Company was struggling with in recent years. Other employees described what was, in essence, a culture of complicity at Weinstein’s places of business, with numerous people throughout the companies fully aware of his behavior but either abetting it or looking the other way.
In addition to that, he was caught on audio admitting to groping a beauty pageant finalist.
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) October 10, 2017
The audio was captured by the NYPD in an undercover sting operation back in 2015, but they have not acted on this evidence for two years. Why?
The New Yorker describes the situation as a kind of “open secret” in Hollywood, something that many knew was going on, but something no one wanted to talk about.
For more than twenty years, Weinstein has also been trailed by rumors of sexual harassment and assault. This has been an open secret to many in Hollywood and beyond, but previous attempts by many publications, including The New Yorker, to investigate and publish the story over the years fell short of the demands of journalistic evidence.
However, as more victims come forward, it appears that the open secret is now being blown wide open. Weinstein may only have a few more days left as a free man at this point (unless he can bribe another district attorney).
Weinstein has long been a major Democratic donor. Since 2000, he has sent over one million dollars to Democratic candidates and organizations. Some of the biggest names on his donor list are Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.
While many of those who accepted money from Weinstein have now begun to distance themselves, there is still no word from Clinton or Obama on these allegations. You’d think that especially the woman who claimed sexist men were the reason she lost would leap at an opportunity to pin the blame on an actually sexist and deplorable man.
But no, apparently cash does wonders in that world, wonders of silencing to the most horrendous of issues. Almost any act can be excusable if you donate money to Democrats, especially Hillary Clinton. Even CNN had choice words for both Clinton and Obama about their deafening silence.
Bottom line: privilege does exist in our society, and it is perpetuated by the Democrat-Hollywood industrial complex. What an absolute blight upon our society when political money overrides the justice system and standards of decency.
The allegations need to be rigorously investigated, and if proven true he must be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. End of story.