Content Warning: Discussion of Sexual Violence
It’s not because Harvey Weinstein is a man. Or white. Or Jewish. Or Hollyweird.
It’s because he’s sick. And because his sickness, left untreated and unaccounted for, traumatized a lot of people into submission, into silence, into complicity.
And because it made a lot of people a whole lot of money.
This is about the volatile mixture of no self-esteem, no skills to manage no self-esteem, and unlimited opportunity to never have to learn. This is about a man who sees himself as Beast while every day a thousand Beauties get off the bus in front of his door. This is about a man who in his heart and soul feels so completely unlovable, the only way to even have the illusion of love is by domination, extortion, control.
Cradle the balls, work the shaft, say that you love me.
This is about a man who still doesn’t get that his dick wasn’t the carrot, it was the stick.
The message embedded in Harvey Weinstein’s behavior is exactly the opposite of some of the best movies he produced over the last 30 years. Good Will Hunting, Shakespeare in Love, The Artist et al – are works of art that celebrate sensitivity, compassion, the human spirit. Getting them made and seen by the world is a miraculous feat.
But if a character in one of Harvey’s movies did to women what Harvey has done, that character would have to pay for it. Mightily.
Which is now what’s coming back to Harvey – in the public square of social media. No mercy. Old Testament retribution.
I wish he would stand in front of every woman he ever hurt and hear it from them. One on one. So he could see and hear and feel the cost. And if one of them wanted to cut off his balls, or another wanted to carve out his heart, or another fuck him in the ass with a butcher’s knife – and if one by one each of them took a big bite out of his bank account – who could argue?
The court of public opinion delivers one kind of justice. Let’s hope a court of law delivers another.
Harvey, you are a man of talents. You have been blessed with the power to tell stories, to provide livelihood, to help people fulfill their dreams – but when you dangle that livelihood and that dream and force those people to choose between debasing themselves or surviving – you are the slaveholder, you are the Nazi. The Bad Guy in this movie is you.
Is this who Max and Miriam raised you to be? Is this the legacy you want to leave your children?
In “Moonstruck” – written by John Patrick Shanley – the cuckolded Olympia Dukakis character is having dinner with the coed-chasing John Mahoney character. After indulging his boyish charms she looks him dead in the eye and says:
“What you don’t know about women is a lot…”
Which is certainly true for me, and for a lot of the men I know. The opposite, I think, is also true: what women don’t know about men is a lot.
I was molested as a boy. I don’t know a lot of guys who haven’t been. We don’t talk about it much. We don’t do well with our own trauma and complicity so we often inflict it on others. But we’ve all got a story.
I believe a vow one makes if one aspires to be a good man is this: “I don’t know a lot, and what I don’t know I don’t know is even more – but I promise to listen, to be open to learning. Even when it’s terrifying. Especially. At the very least I promise to be accountable for all of it – past, present, future. I promise to do better. I promise to try.”
This is a sacred vow. Not always easy to keep. Show me a man who is flawless, I’ll show you a liar. Show me a man who is a bully, I’ll show you a coward. Show me a man who is sanctimonious, I’ll show you a creep.
I have paid women to touch me because I was dying to be touched by a woman. Did we make an agreement – yes. Did I keep my end of the agreement – yes. Did I always behave with respect, compassion, decency – yes.
Did I leave each time feeling shame and self-disgust for having to pay to be touched – yes.
I know – in every cell of my being – what unlovable feels like. I know how unbearable loneliness can be. I know the entitlements a white man gets in a culture where race, predation and porn have such a controlling interest. And I know the infinite number of disconnects that exist between my head, my heart and my cock. I have and will spend a lifetime trying to re-connect them.
You want a second chance, Harvey?
You need to own it, wear it. Everything you’ve done. Get with the people who feel wronged – get with them, listen to them, make amends. Repent. Whatever they need, whatever it takes. However long it takes.
Look into your own heart and find out what you don’t know. And what you don’t know you don’t know. LEARN THE FUCKING LESSON of this holocaust you have created.
Bill Clinton couldn’t do it, Barry Bonds still hasn’t, you know Bill Cosby and Bill O’Reilly won’t. There are millions of men in powerful positions all over the world who can’t.
And then there’s the man we elected president, the ‘most powerful man’ in the world – your New Testament brother in lying, cowardice, and creepdom – Donald Trump…
God help us all that such tiny, frightened men dangle the fate of the world in front of us.
Show all these men how to do it, Harvey. Be the hero of a new movie. Written, directed, and starring you.
First day of production begins right now.
October 17, 2017