Harassment and Assault Allegations Demonstrate Radical Disparity Between the Entertainment and Political Culture

Parallel Harassment and Assault Allegations for Roy Moore, Louis CK, and Kevin Spacey Demonstrate Radical Disparity Between the Entertainment and Political Culture

By Katie Hunter and Anne Howard

Louis CK, an Emmy-award winning auteur, known for his incisive use of comedy to illustrate flaws in human behavior, was accused by five women of sexual misconduct in an article published yesterday afternoon by the New York Times. In advance of the article’s publication, CK delayed the release of his film I Love You, Daddy, which had been set to premiere Thursday evening. News broke this morning that the film has now been dropped by its distributor, The Orchard. CK’s television show, Louie, had been on extended hiatus from FX. The network has not officially dropped the program yet, but claims the matter is currently “under review.”

Roy Moore, a conservative Republican senator, twice elected and removed from the Alabama Supreme Court for violating judicial ethics, was accused of making sexual and romantic overtures to a then 14-year-old girl, as reported by the Washington Post earlier this week. In contrast to the immediate consequences CK is facing, Moore has yet to face political consequences for the allegations beyond strong rebukes by centrist and left-leaning media outlets, as well as public outcry and condemnation by left-wing peers in Senate. Other Alabama elected officials defended Moore, including Alabama Bibb County Republican chairman Jerry Pow, who said he would still vote for Moore even if he committed a sex crime against a young girl because Pow does not support the Democrat challenger. Moore has not withdrawn his candidacy from a special election taking place in Alabama on December 12th.

Disparity in consequences for alleged predators, as news broke this week of alleged sexual misconduct by Alabama Senator Roy Moore and comedian Louis CK.

The response of these two men themselves also highlights the divide in acceptable behavior between Washington and Hollywood. After the New York Times piece canceled an interview, Louis CK canceled a scheduled appearance that evening on The Late Show and is reportedly crafting a contrite official response to the allegations. In contrast, within 24 hours of the release of the Washington Post story, Moore began soliciting donations from his supporters, calling the allegations “an all-out war on our conservative values.”

Louis CK Takes Responsibility for his actions- Roy Moore Denies any wrongdoings

In a statement released to EW, Louis CK said, “These stories are true,” he wrote in his extended statement.

I want to address the stories told to The New York Times by five women named Abby, Rebecca, Dana, Julia who felt able to name themselves and one who did not.

These stories are true. At the time, I said to myself that what I did was okay because I never showed a woman my dick without asking first, which is also true. But what I learned later in life, too late, is that when you have power over another person, asking them to look at your dick isn’t a question. It’s a predicament for them. The power I had over these women is that they admired me. And I wielded that power irresponsibly. I have been remorseful of my actions. And I’ve tried to learn from them. And run from them. Now I’m aware of the extent of the impact of my actions. I learned yesterday the extent to which I left these women who admired me feeling badly about themselves and cautious around other men who would never have put them in that position.

I also took advantage of the fact that I was widely admired in my and their community, which disabled them from sharing their story and brought hardship to them when they tried because people who look up to me didn’t want to hear it. I didn’t think that I was doing any of that because my position allowed me not to think about it.”

While Roy Moore continues to deny any wrongdoings or even knowing his main accuser. Speaking at an event in Alabama, Roy said,

“I have not provided alcoholic beverages, beer or anything else, to a minor,” Moore said Saturday. “I have not been guilty of sexual misconduct with anyone. These allegations came only four and a half weeks before the general election on December 12. Why now?”

“This article is a prime example of fake news,” Moore added. “We do not intend to let the Democrats or the established Republicans or anybody else behind this story stop this campaign.”

Some of his supporters and family members have even gone as far as comparing him to Jesus, Moore’s brother admiring ” Roy for his sacrifice”. While state official, State Auditor Jim Ziegler who used  Joseph to defend pedophilia in general and came to Moore’s defense with the following logic. Ziegler told The Washington Examiner, “Take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus. There’s just nothing immoral or illegal here. Maybe just a little bit unusual.”

Moral Standards Gone Crazy

These concurrent allegations seem to indicate that in the United States, prominent men in entertainment are held to a higher moral and behavioral standard than the men who hold elected office. The public outcry earlier this month against actor and filmmaker Kevin Spacey led to the cancellation of Spacey’s show while similarly James Toback‘s career has, for lack of better words, been halted, while President Trump, a man accused of sexual assault by 13 women still holds the highest political office in the country. The allegations against Moore may be evidence that Hollywood’s purging of predators is spreading to Washington, but the consequences so far for Moore appear to show that partisan disagreements outweigh alleged sexual misconduct in the minds of U.S. politicians. 

The article was updated Saturday, November 11 with new information.

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