Kevin Spacey Found Not Liable In Anthony Rapp Sexual Abuse Case

In 80 minutes of deliberations, a jury found Oscar winner Kevin Spacey was not liable in a civil sexual abuse trail brought by  actor Anthony Rapp.
Kevin Spacey (image via Depositphotos)

In 80 minutes of deliberations, a jury found Oscar winner Kevin Spacey not liable in a civil sexual abuse trial brought by actor Anthony Rapp.

Rapp had accused Spacey of sexual abuse during a party at Spacey’s apartment in 1986 when both actors were appearing on Broadway in separate productions. Continue reading “Kevin Spacey Found Not Liable In Anthony Rapp Sexual Abuse Case”

New Ad From Gillette Addresses Masculinity In The Age Of The #MeToo Movement

Gillette has debuted a new campaign, “The Best Men Can Be,” with a minute and a half video that’s getting props and criticism.  The new messaging is a riff on “The Best a Man Can Get” tagline which debuted 30 years ago in 1989 during Super Bowl XXIII.
(screen capture via Gillette)

Gillette has debuted a new campaign, “The Best Men Can Be,” with a minute and a half video that’s getting props and criticism.

The new messaging is a riff on “The Best a Man Can Get” tagline which debuted 30 years ago in 1989 during Super Bowl XXIII.

The new 90 second spot, titled “We Believe,” asks the viewer, “Is this the best a man can get?” as we hear terms like “bullying,” “MeToo movement,” and “masculinity” in the background.

The text of the voiceover reads:

“Is this the best a man can get? Is it? We can’t hide from it. It’s been going on far too long. We can’t laugh it off making the same old excuses. But something finally changed and there will be no going back. Because we, we believe in the best in men. To say the right thing, to act the right way. Some already are – in ways big and small. Some is not enough because the boys watching today will be the men of tomorrow.”

Visually, we see a group of boys chasing other boys while slurs of “loser,” “sissy,” and “freak” are printed across the screen; fathers at a backyard cookout watching boys fight while saying, “Boys will be boys;” sitcom and movie situations where adult men pretend to grope women.

“Bullying. Harassment. Is this the best a man can get?,” reads the video description. “It’s only by challenging ourselves to do more, that we can get closer to our best. To say the right thing, to act the right way.”

There’s also a link to a new brand site, TheBestMenCanBe.org, which offers more insight into the new company positions on healthy masculinity.

“As a company that encourages men to be their best, we have a responsibility to make sure we are promoting positive, attainable, inclusive and healthy versions of what it means to be a man,” says Gillette at the new site.

In addition, Gillette pledges to donate $1 million per year for the next three years to non-profit organizations that set out to “inspire, educate and help men of all ages achieve their personal ‘best’ and become role models for the next generation.”

Sounds like a worthy message, yes?

But if you click over to the YouTube page where the video lives, the comments are over-the-top negative.

At this writing, the clip has garnered 14K ‘thumbs down’ votes versus less than 2K ‘thumbs up’ votes.

Joe Jervis at JoeMyGod notes that the far-right, conservative website InfoWars sent their flying monkeys to the video page to troll.

“I hope this anti-male propaganda film costed you a lot and that the outcome will cost you a lot more.”

“Let’s try cultural castration as our marketing strategy.”

“Two kids play-fighting on the grass, which is probably one of the most fun things to do as a kid with your friends and they break it up. It just shows how detached these pig feminist demagogues are.”

“Gillette getting Cucked”

“Never shaving with Gillette again. Take your propoganda elsewhere.”

“My masculinity isn’t toxic, your femininity is.”

AdAge notes that Gillette’s new messaging joins other men’s personal care products, like Just For Men and Unilever’s Axe, that now aim for “an evolved outlook on masculinity.”

What do you think, readers? Is the new ad spot aspirational? Or insulting to men?

Are men stuck in a ‘catch 22’ in trying to be their best while attempting to fit into an ever-evolving definition of ‘masculinity?”

(h/t AdAge)

Harvey Weinstein To Surrender To Authorities On Friday Regarding Sexual Misconduct Allegations

(image via Flickr/Thomas Hawk)

The New York Daily News is reporting that disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein is expected to surrender to authorities sometime on Friday to face charges related to alleged sexual misconduct in connection to a probe by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office and NYPD.

The Academy Award winning producer is facing charges regarding at least one accuser, Lucia Evans, who told authorities that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on him in 2004, sources said.

Weinstein is expected to be charged with felony sexual assault.

The Daily News reports that due to the nature of the allegations, the statute of limitations does not apply.

In October 2017, following numerous allegations of sexual misconduct, Weinstein was fired from his company and expelled from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

By the end of October, well over 80 women had made allegations against Weinstein. The allegations were the impetus for the “#MeToo” social media campaign.

Since then the launch of the #MeToo campaign, gay men have stepped forward alongside women to share their stories of sexual misconduct in the workplace.

Weinstein has maintained that he is innocent of all alleged wrongdoing.

TIME Magazine Recognizes “The Silence Breakers” Of The #MeToo Movement As “Person Of The Year”

This morning, TIME Magazine announced “The Silence Breakers” of the #MeToo movement as the publication’s “Person of the Year.”

Truly, this is worthy recognition for one of the fastest cultural shifts seen in modern history.

Donald Trump, an accused sexual predator himself, was runner-up. Trump is mentioned in the piece as both a harasser and a motivation to speak out.

From the TIME Magazine article:

We’re still at the bomb-throwing point of this revolution, a reactive stage at which nuance can go into hiding. But while anger can start a revolution, in its most raw and feral form it can’t negotiate the more delicate dance steps needed for true social change. Private conversations, which can’t be legislated or enforced, are essential.

Norms evolve, and it’s long past time for any culture to view harassment as acceptable. But there’s a great deal at stake in how we assess these new boundaries—for women and men together. We can and should police criminal acts and discourage inappropriate, destructive behavior.

At least we’ve started asking the right questions. Ones that seem alarmingly basic in hindsight: “What if we did complain?” proposes Megyn Kelly. “What if we didn’t whine, but we spoke our truth in our strongest voices and insisted that those around us did better? What if that worked to change reality right now?” Kelly acknowledges that this still feels more like a promise than a certainty. But for the moment, the world is listening.

My “Me Too” Interview With NBC News – LGBT Sexual Harassment In The Workplace

In the aftermath of the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment/assault stories, social media created the #MeToo campaign to encourage those folks who have been assaulted or harassed in the workplace to come forward; to show how widespread the issue truly is.

I joined that campaign posting “Me too” on my Facebook wall a couple of days ago. I had been the target of sexual harassment years ago when I was working in NYC in my first Broadway show.

A journalist from NBC Out sent out a request looking for LGBTs willing to share their stories. I paused thinking long and hard about this.

I’ve never shared this with anyone other than two people at the time: my husband, Michael, and one other cast member of the show.

I’m hoping, by my sharing, others – especially men – will know they aren’t the only ones. And that there are degrees of harassment that vary that can make you question whether something was or was not “harassment.”

After living with the story for so many years, it’s surprisingly uncomfortable seeing it in print. I can only imagine what the women who dealt with Harvey Weinstein felt.

From John Paul Brammer at NBC Out:

Randy Slovacek, a former Broadway performer and a working choreographer, said his experience with sexual harassment negatively impacted his career.

“My first Broadway show was the last revival of ‘Hello Dolly’ with Carol Channing. I was 31, and a little naive about my stage manager making passes at me,” Slovacek said. “At first, I thought it was just silly, the way gay guys can be. Then it got more overt and heavy-handed.”

Slovacek said he met his husband, Michael, while recording the Broadway cast album for ‘Hello Dolly.’ He said his stage manager noticed him looking at Michael and pulled Slovacek onto his lap.

“It was almost territorial,” Slovacek said. “It was forceful and in front of a lot of people. I was like, ‘What are you doing?’ And he did it three times.”

But the worst, Slovacek said, happened after he was late to a curtain call in Boston. He had been a model employee, he said, and he ran to the office to apologize to the stage manager who, to Slovacek’s surprise, immediately waived it off. But then, Slovacek said, the stage manager turned the discussion to the jacuzzi in Slovacek’s Boston apartment.

“He knew the place, and he said, ‘That’s the place with the jacuzzi. When am I going to come over?'” Slovacek said. “I kind of laughed it off, but he kept pushing. I finally found a way to gracefully exit, but then I got a letter saying I had been written up for being late, and it was a serious violation.”

Slovacek said the stage manager, who is now deceased, declared Slovacek late again to another performance in D.C. by a minute, even though Slovacek said he was on time, and sent him home. “Who gets sent home for one minute?” Slovacek said. “I thought, ‘This guy is really after me.'”

Munoz, Slovacek and Brown all said they struggled to report and come to terms with their experiences. Munoz and Slovacek said they frequently second-guessed if what had happened to them would be considered harassment at all, but the Weinstein story made them reflect.

“This week, having people speaking out, it might seem like a small thing, but it makes other people more willing to speak out,” Munoz said. “It’s powerful, those moments of people being willing to examine their experience and decide they have something to say.”

Slovacek echoed that sentiment and said what needs to happen, in both the gay community and beyond, is people need to be willing to challenge their peers.

“If your buddy comes back after cracking a joke or doing something inappropriate, especially if they’re in a place of authority, you need to say that’s not cool,” Slovacek said. “Or if someone tells you a story about something they’ve done, you need to tell them to not do that.”

“Somebody has to say something,” Slovacek said.

I encourage you to read the full article at NBC Out.

#Forward