You Can’t Separate Men From the Rape they Commit

You Can't Separate Men From the Rape they Commit

Mary Miller, Opinion Writer

Bill Cosby.

Woody Allen.

Harvey Weinstein.

Louis C. K.

Kevin Spacey.

R Kelly.

The list of men in the spotlight who have been accused of sexual assault is ever growing.

It has become a frequent topic of discussion on whether or not these men’s works can be separated from them and their devastatingly harmful actions.

Should we all boycott our favorite shows, movies, and music just because of the artists’ actions in their personal lives?

Yes, yes we should.

Sexual assault survivors are not taken seriously by the authorities in our country let alone the ordinary citizens.

In 2016, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, only 23% of sexual assault survivors reported the crime to the police.

Survivors are often scared to come forward about the trauma they have endured due to the attitude exuded by our society that if you do come forward it was somehow your fault — whether that be a drink you had, your choice of clothing, or the dark route you had to take to get home– and if you don’t come forward fast enough you’re a liar.

While only 2-8%, as many studies have stated, of rape allegations are false, there is still a widely shared mindset of “innocent until proven guilty”.

This mindset inherently states that survivors are not worth being believed unless there is evidence that says otherwise, although even times when there is evidence the perpetrator still often gets off with a light punishment and the praise of the public.

Many of the men listed above, as well as a plentiful amount of others, have been accused of sexual assault or rape and have continued to have successful careers due to the ignorance of the general population as well as the lack of humility and a strong spine within producers or actors who collaborate with those accused.

What is even more concerning than the lack of cancellation of celebrities who have been accused of sexual misconduct but are denying it, is the lack of repercussions for those who have admitted it.

Louis C.K. has admitted to committing sexual assault against 5 women who publicly stated his crimes and has not only had other celebrities to support him such as Lena Dunham but has also escaped repercussions in his career.

Not only are assaulters frequently socially acquitted but pedophiles often are as well.

Last Thursday, Surviving R Kelly aired reviving this heavy topic of conversation: why are celebrities being excused from their sexual crimes due to their fame and why are we all just sitting back and supporting them for it?

By supporting artists and glossing over their sexual misconduct, such as R. Kelly being in relationships, romantic as well as sexual, with minors, you are inadvertently excusing their actions and allowing them to further their careers regardless of their wrongdoings.

By continuing to stream artists music or watch their tv shows and movies you are essentially making a statement saying that someone being a pedophile or a rapist doesn’t bother you enough to stop supporting them. This attitude invalidates survivors and diminishes their experiences by erasing them.

If you continue to listen to artists who rape and assault women, not to take away from the men and genderqueer people who are assaulted because there are plenty of them, that just says how much, or should I say how little, you truly care about women.

You don’t get to separate the art from the artist because their victims will never get to.