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We Don’t Care That Harvey Weinstein’s Life Is “Ruined”

Maybe don't assault women then.

Harvey Weinstein.

Apparently, we should feel bad for Harvey Weinstein. The former producer, who has been accused of sexual assault by multiple women, has apparently had his life ruined and we should all feel terrible about it, at least according to his attorney.

Attorney Donna Rotunno told Gayle King in an interview (as reported via The Hill), “His whole life has been ruined, toppled, damaged. And whether it’s by his own doing or others’, that’s the fact. And the fact is that no matter what we do, and we can walk out of that courtroom with a not guilty and walk him out onto those courtroom steps, and he never gets to be Harvey Weinstein ever again.”

Rotunno also expressed concern about the Me Too movement, saying “I think in many ways, there are good things about Me Too — and I’ve said this — but what bothers me about Me Too … it allows the court of public opinion to take over the narrative. And when you can’t come out and then either correct or challenge that narrative, it puts you in a position where you’re stripped of your rights.”

There’s a lot to unpack here, but perhaps the worst is that apparently we should feel sorry for Weinstein ruining his own life. Women coming forward with allegations of sexual assault is not them trying to ruin his life. Weinstein is the one who chose to allegedly assault women, and therefore he’s responsible for ruining his own life. If he or his lawyer want to whine about that, that’s fine, but put the blame on him. There’s also an incredible irony here, as Weinstein has also been accused of willfully ruining the careers of actresses and people who resisted him for decades.

I’m also unsure as to why we’re supposed to feel sorry that his life is ruined. If Harvey Weinstein, one of Hollywood’s darkest secrets, can no longer hurt women, that’s not a bad thing. We shouldn’t feel sorry for a man who has allegedly assaulted multiple women, and if it helped spark a movement to expose more predators in Hollywood, then that’s not a bad thing. We need to make workplaces safe for women, and exposing predators is one way to do that.

The Me Too movement doesn’t “strip” you of rights by openly calling out abusive men. It is a moment where women are being listened to, and if someone believes women, that isn’t leaving things to the court of public opinion. Women still face harassment and attacks for coming forward with stories of sexual harassment and assault against men. The idea that women are deliberately trying to ruin men’s lives is a falsehood, and a harmful one at that.

Overall, I’m not feeling too bad for Weinstein right now, regardless of whether or not his life is ruined. If he is convicted, it means he made the conscious choice to attack and harm women. That’s on him. No one should feel bad for a man suffering consequences for his actions, especially if those actions are harmful. Consequences should exist for abusers, and if that means they can’t continue to harm women, that’s a net good.

(via The Hill, image: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

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Kate (they/them) says sorry a lot for someone who is not sorry about the amount of strongly held opinions they have. Raised on a steady diet of The West Wing and classic film, they are now a cosplayer who will fight you over issues of inclusion in media while also writing coffee shop AU fanfic for their favorite rare pairs.