From Hollywood to Washington — sexual predators abound from both political parties (Democratic View)


Kylie Yamada, Entertainment Editorm

Americans can rest easy knowing both the most powerful politicians and entertainers will protect each other even if they commit terrible crimes. Never has this principle been more prominent than in the most recent news cycles.

Sexual harassment exists at every level of society, from teenagers refusing to accept rejection all the way to the casting coach. Recently, film producer Harvey Weinstein has become the face of harassment as perpetuated by old, powerful men.

Weinstein perfectly encapsulates every common attribute of a sexual predator: he is an older man in a position of power, which allows him a tremendous amount of influence over the careers of young women.

His actions are nothing new in Hollywood. Before Weinstein there were Woody Allen and Roman Polanski, both of whom were accused of statutory rape against young girls. Outside of Hollywood, there is no shortage of high-profile men who have had their reputations marred due to sexual harassment: Bill Clinton, Bill O’Reilly, Anthony Weiner and, of course, Donald Trump.

The issue here lies in the fact that many of these men have not had true punitive action taken against them. Weinstein has been removed from the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences, but what about Woody Allen, who is in the middle of filming his next film? Or Roman Polanski, who won an Oscar for Best Director while still hiding from American authorities for his rape charge? Or, for that matter, our current President Donald Trump?

Trump has been accused of sexual harassment and assault by various women ranging from his ex-wife Ivana Trump to contestants in his Miss USA beauty pageant. The comparison between the two men is inevitable; Weinstein’s allegations broke almost exactly a year after Trump’s infamous tape where he bragged about grabbing women “by the pussy.”

Trump has apologized for what he said, proclaiming his words as just words — in opposition to former President Bill Clinton, who was impeached for his relationship with 23-year-old intern Monica Lewinsky, but later acquitted by a Democrat-controlled Senate. Clinton has also been further accused of rape by Juanita Broaddrick and harassment by Paula Jones and Kathleen Willey.

The political establishment allows not only Trump but also Hillary Clinton, who publicly defended and covered for her husband on “60 Minutes,” to remain active in politics. Similarly, director Quentin Tarantino admitted to “The New York Times” to remaining silent despite his knowledge of how Weinstein has harassed actresses.

Even assuming his words truly were in jest, Trump’s words are not without harm. As President of the United States, his statements — no matter how irrelevant he claims they are — have tremendous influence on all people, including America’s youth. He remains complicit in the very system he attacked for supporting Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Hollywood and Washington are now in a deadlock, each pointing to the others’ indiscretions to distract from the issues plaguing both industries. Trump points to Weinstein as proof of Hollywood’s liberal bias in ignorance of his own flaws.

As Americans, we cannot fully eliminate harassment from society if our own leaders are complicit. Hollywood has to reflect on its hidden depravity, but the truth is that, above Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, sexual harassment is endemic to every part of society.