Hollywood’s misogynistic money wheel turns American culture, politics

Hollywood’s misogynistic money wheel turns American culture, politics
© Getty

“Shocked and appalled.”

Those were Secretary Clinton’s words in a statement released in response to the allegations rocking both Hollywood and Washington that one of its biggest wigs, Harvey Weinstein, has been systematically assaulting women for decades.  

ADVERTISEMENT
Other statements have come trickling in with lots more of the same generic lingo, but let’s be honest — nobody was really all that shocked. To the contrary, word is that everyone actually knew about his misconduct, and for a long time.

Already The New York Times is on defense after a former reporter claimed the paper could have exposed Weinstein over a decade ago but didn’t because Weinstein had the story quashed and even had his handsome bros like Matt Damon and Russell Crowe call the reporter to get her to back off.  

Former President Obama even weighed in, saying:

“Any man who demeans and degrades women in such fashion needs to be condemned and held accountable, regardless of wealth or status. We should celebrate the courage of women who have come forward to tell these painful stories. And we all need to build a culture — including by empowering our girls and teaching our boys decency and respect — so we can make such behavior less prevalent in the future.”

Unlike Secretary Clinton, who rode the coattails of a sexual predator to power, Mr. Obama actually has two feet to stand on when it comes to denouncing misogyny. He had his critics, and I was one of them, but he was without a doubt a gentleman and a loving husband and father. There is of course the unfortunate detail that he allowed his daughter to intern for The Weinstein Company, but let’s take him at his word about “building a culture” that teaches “decency and respect” towards women.

And let’s start with Hollywood.

Hollywood is a huge influencer of culture, as well as politics. Weinstein’s endless stream of contributions to political causes of the left are no secret, nor really were his donations and bundling of massive sums for Democrat candidates. He gave President Obama $45,800 and Secretary Clinton $26,832.  Since 2000, he has given almost $1 million to Democrat candidates and bundled over a million more. He was the single biggest bundler for Alison Lundergan Grimes, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP strategist donates to Alabama Democrat McConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees Brent Budowsky: A plea to Alabama voters MORE’s Democratic opponent in 2014. As one outlet put it, “Weinstein is one of the Democratic Party’s most prolific donors.”

Plenty will say the left looked the other way from Weinstein’s predatory behavior because they liked the cash stream he sent their way.

But let’s be honest — most Americans have been staring straight at the misogynist culture that Hollywood moguls like Weinstein have enabled by simply looking at their screens.

This is, after all, the industry that gave us “Fifty Shades of Grey,” a movie about torture sex, on Valentine’s Day; the industry where girl-power anthems like Katy Perry’s “Roar” are written by accused rapist Dr. Luke, the industry that exalted Hugh Hefner as some kind of champion of the First Amendment. No industry has done more than Hollywood to ruin culture, or more to not just normalize, but glamorize, sexual violence and misogyny.

And the left has been happily taking their money for its various causes, many of which, like Planned Parenthood, are slapped with the label “women’s empowerment,” for decades.

To be sure, the right is not immune from powerful predators — see, for example, Roger Ailes, a man who was not without influence. But the left’s relationship with Hollywood is unique. The industry and the party are in a seemingly permanent embrace, and the idea that a movie star can bully a New York Times reporter off a major story about systematic sexual assault is, what’s the word, appalling? (The Times claims to have “no recollection” of being pressured off the story.)

But for those of us who have been speaking out against Hollywood’s blatant misogynistic money wheel, learning that one of its biggest executives is an alleged rapist is hardly shocking.

Ashley E. McGuire is the author of Sex Scandal: The Drive to Abolish Male and Female.