Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 04:24pm

Patroklos wrote:
2017-11-13 03:34pm
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 02:34pm
Patroklos wrote:
2017-11-13 01:18pm


Your overreaction and not addressing anything I actually said just validates my position. The right has its own versions of moral preening and circling its wagons, but celebrity worship of the glitsy Hollywood type is very much a Left vice in modern times. Specifically we are talking about a group whose elite for a long time has been lecturing the nation from every high horse available about this particular topic, including this abuser who was one of the most powerful of their number, and all along they were knowingly coddling a particularly heinous repeat offender. This was not a dusty skeleton in a closet, this was an ongoing thing. Tolerated at ever level and by every flavor of the Lefts formal and informal banner bearers.

This particular manifestation It is not unheard of on the Right, and it certainly has a lot to do with celebrities themselves gravitating Left, but you can't deny Hollywood is lefty land. And I will also note its the new hobby of the Left to elevate all of their favorites to celebrity status. From jurists to CEOs to two bit has been kid show fake scientists, everyone who is anyone in the pantheon of popular leftist figures is given the celebrity treatment. On purpose. And if you think Weistien's circle is limited to Hollywood or celebrities you are delusional.

Now get on with it and call me a Nazi so we can skip a dozen turgid posts of your virtue signalling and impotent frustration at the splinter in your eye. What, did you think Lefty shit didn't stink?
Your argument is absolute fucking trash, and the way you are putting it forth is coming off as smug trolling. I'm going to give you one chance to make an argument that isn't garbage and to do so in a manner that respects your opponent, or I am going to start flushing your posts.
I am responding to someone who just called a poster a Nazi, yet I am some how the troll? My argument is on topic, logical and stands on its own, do as you will.
Cosmicalstorm regularly links to white supremacist and nazi propaganda sites and rambles on and on in a racist fashion. He's been temp banned for it several times, but for some reason the admins have yet to permaban him. What the fuck else is she supposed to call him?

Stepping out of my mod role for a moment:

Producers in hollywood have a lot of power, and that culture is itself pretty insular. The difference between left and right in this country with respect to things like sexual assault is that when this shit gets exposed (and it doesn't get exposed for a long time due to power dynamics), the left punishes for it. Weinstein's career is dead. The actors who do this shit? Their careers are dead. Guilty or Innocent, George Takei's career might well be dead.

The right lets it fucking slide.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 04:40pm

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... lgan-power
How should women respond when a man we like is accused of harassment?

This post-Weinstein moment is, as the feminist writer Rebecca Traister has remarked, “some renegade ’70s-era feminist shit going on. I’ve never lived through anything like it.” Me neither. We’re watching goliaths fall, battalions of women with slingshots firing back – finally. And there’s a pleasure in watching the colossus stumble, isn’t there? Take him down, ladies, I thought as the allegations against Harvey Weinstein mounted; sing it, I cheered, as women shared stories of theatre director Max Stafford-Clark; likewise as young men came forward to confront Kevin Spacey.

Michael Colgan ran Dublin’s Gate theatre for 33 years and was, until his retirement last year, probably the most powerful man in Irish theatre. Now he’s facing allegations of sexual harassment and bullying from women in the Irish arts. He is accused of frequent inappropriate touching and sexualised comments. In an article published on Sunday, he apologised to anyone he might have hurt, while also casting the alleged harassment – unhelpfully, some victims feel – as a failure to distinguish between his personal and professional life.

In contrast to the way I responded to other allegations, my reaction to playwright Grace Dyas’s original blogpost alleging harassment by Colgan was far from gleeful. I believed her. I waited for more women’s stories to follow. As they emerged, I kept meaning to express my support on social media – to thank them for their feminist work. But for about a week, I couldn’t bring myself to do so.

I worked at the bar in the Gate for two years and I just loved Colgan. The women who have spoken to the Irish media tell tales of his hand eternally resting uncomfortably on their lower backs, ever at risk of sliding towards their bottoms. I am not surprised by these allegations, because that kind of behaviour was absolutely characteristic of boozy opening nights at the Gate. I don’t think that anyone who has worked at the theatre could honestly say they were surprised.

Yet Colgan was exceptionally kind to me. And I suppose that this is one way abusers keep their power in place: by bestowing kindness and favour on some women, building up networks of affection and loyalty, while bullying and harassing others. I’m not saying this is an intentional strategy, it’s more like the messy human aspect of it all.

Colgan used to call me “the blue stocking” and sit down to discuss poetry with me at the bar while ignoring the ambassador of somewhere or other and his wife because they were boring. With crowds of important Irish luvvies looking on, he dragged me out from behind half-pulled pints to introduce me to Brian Friel, and told him that I’d just won a scholarship to study theatre in London.

This wasn’t an ostentatious kind of anti-snobbery either. It was (as far as I could see) just him – interested in people, interested in ideas, completely anarchic when it came to social hierarchies or etiquette. He was very protective of his staff in some ways – always taking the coffee lady’s side over some bigwig drinking champers. That said, his wildly inappropriate behaviour was common knowledge at the theatre.

I didn’t have the politics then that I have now, and maybe if I had, my warm memories of the Gate would be different. Here’s the thing, though – Colgan is alleged to be abusive and misogynistic, and I believe those allegations, yet he is also charming, fun, and in many ways an extraordinary person.

I don’t want to mitigate the impact of misogynistic abuse here; rather, I’m trying to trace the emotional architecture of patriarchy. I never stopped to consider that Weinstein was probably genuinely lovely to lots of women. I scoffed at Lindsay Lohan saying she feels sad for Weinstein. Colgan hasn’t been accused of anything that equates with Weinstein. But I do feel sad for him, even if he’s getting a comeuppance he deserves.

In trying to puzzle out how abusive men gain power and hang on to it, it’s tempting to focus on intimidation tactics: macho posturing, aggression. But reflecting on how I ignore the misogynies of men I like, I realise that kindness, affection and loyalty are stronger glue than fear. Wouldn’t dismantling patriarchy be so much easier if abusers were two-dimensional villains? But it’s their charm, their humanity and – yes – their virtues that draw people to them. In turn, the strength of those relationships gives them permission to behave in hurtful ways.

What do we do with our loyalty when men we care about are accused, when we are, after a fashion, accused ourselves of seeing and doing nothing? Is it our feminist duty to betray the genuine bonds that tangle us up in systems of oppression? Or, to put it more viscerally: are we really going to look at a man who gave us a hand up and kick him when he’s down?

We’ve all got our own moral compass (some in better working order than others, clearly). I don’t think there can be a simple imperative in these situations. But maybe there is a duty to remember that power isn’t all threats and tantrums; it’s also friendship and poetry.

When victims speak out, they’re not just confronting an abuser. Often they’re facing an entire community of people who have affection for that man – many of them women. That must be petrifying. And knowing that, you’ve got to have crazy respect for those who dare to tear through layers of love and loyalty, through palimpsests of doubt and shame, to reveal the poison at the very heart of the thing.

• Emer O’Toole is assistant professor of Irish performance studies at Concordia University, in Canada
I this is more of a universal problem. People who abuse their authority are more often than not, people that are actually charismatic on some level. I think we as a whole enable such abuse in a variety of situations because such people are often not the easiest to ostracise, we perhaps ostracise more often the person who dared to destroy the image of their "idol". A person's charisma can often be their get out of trouble card.

We're taught to be drawn towards such figures, that it makes it harder for anyone to judge a person we are more emotionally attached to. The more troubling problem is people see such figures getting away with trouble because of their charisma and influence, even when they know it is wrong. Does this help to enable others to commit such abuse as well?

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 04:24pm

Stepping out of my mod role for a moment:

Producers in hollywood have a lot of power, and that culture is itself pretty insular. The difference between left and right in this country with respect to things like sexual assault is that when this shit gets exposed (and it doesn't get exposed for a long time due to power dynamics), the left punishes for it. Weinstein's career is dead. The actors who do this shit? Their careers are dead. Guilty or Innocent, George Takei's career might well be dead.
But it's just specific to individuals, isn't it? The whole culture of basically worshipping charisma in deeply ingrained to Hollywood. Would this recent backlash against such actions actually stop, or is this just going to be a mere "phase" that's forgotten about 5 years later?

Also, note the reaction towards George Takei vs Weinstein. People are far more relucant to be angry at him compared to Weinstein's, perhaps due to him being more personally charismatic?
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 05:10pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 04:40pm

But it's just specific to individuals, isn't it? The whole culture of basically worshipping charisma in deeply ingrained to Hollywood. Would this recent backlash against such actions actually stop, or is this just going to be a mere "phase" that's forgotten about 5 years later?

Also, note the reaction towards George Takei vs Weinstein. People are far more relucant to be angry at him compared to Weinstein's, perhaps due to him being more personally charismatic?
To the first, I don't think it is a phase. With the internet, we have better communication, and we're finally getting the message across that it is OK and Safe to come forward with these things, and that the starting point is to believe them (not the end point, but the starting point).

As for the difference... no. The difference is in the number and surrounding context. The women who've come forward against Weinstein took an actual risk to do so, there are over 100 of them, they show a consistent pattern of behavior on his part, and they have no reason to lie.

The probability slider for Weinstein gets pushed toward Yes by all that information

The guy who accused George Takei is singular, he has been feuding politically with George Takei for the last year until he got blocked on social media and thus has a reason to lie. There is no pattern of behavior barring an interview on the Howard Stern show that only indicates that George Takei was normal in gay subculture in the 1970s (by modern standards what he was doing would be considered less acceptable).

For this, the Probability Slider moves toward no, then oscillates back toward yes somewhat given Howard Stern interview and how the events described might go too far. Ends up being more of a coin toss. He may not have done the thing he is accused of right now, but he likely did cross the line at some point. So... probability slider is at 65-70% for me right now.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Patroklos » 2017-11-13 05:26pm

Dragon Angel wrote:
2017-11-13 03:38pm
I guess calling someone who regularly links far right trash what they are is too much nowadays. What's the Right's politically correct term for someone like cosmicalstorm then?
How about Idiot? Again, we aren't the flashy Hollywood types.

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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 05:26pm

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:10pm
To the first, I don't think it is a phase. With the internet, we have better communication, and we're finally getting the message across that it is OK and Safe to come forward with these things, and that the starting point is to believe them (not the end point, but the starting point).

As for the difference... no. The difference is in the number and surrounding context. The women who've come forward against Weinstein took an actual risk to do so, there are over 100 of them, they show a consistent pattern of behavior on his part, and they have no reason to lie.

The probability slider for Weinstein gets pushed toward Yes by all that information
I think what helped to push things along is that Weinstein seems to be an unlikeable guy and abusive by Hollywood standards. He did it often to nearly every female actress. His actions are well known in Hollywood even before people officially spoke up about it. What about those that did it far less obvious manner to everyone?
The guy who accused George Takei is singular, he has been feuding politically with George Takei for the last year until he got blocked on social media and thus has a reason to lie. There is no pattern of behavior barring an interview on the Howard Stern show that only indicates that George Takei was normal in gay subculture in the 1970s (by modern standards what he was doing would be considered less acceptable).

For this, the Probability Slider moves toward no, then oscillates back toward yes somewhat given Howard Stern interview and how the events described might go too far. Ends up being more of a coin toss. He may not have done the thing he is accused of right now, but he likely did cross the line at some point.
But isn't it also harder for someone to speak out against a person like George Takei vs someone like Weinstein as well? It's easier for people to speak out against Weinstein because there are enough people who will believe them vs those that spoke up against Takei.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Dragon Angel » 2017-11-13 05:32pm

Patroklos wrote:
2017-11-13 05:26pm
How about Idiot? Again, we aren't the flashy Hollywood types.
Talks like a Nazi, links to Nazi blogs, dog whistles like a Nazi ... isn't a Nazi?

I'm sorry if I don't take you seriously anymore in this discussion.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 05:35pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 05:26pm
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:10pm
To the first, I don't think it is a phase. With the internet, we have better communication, and we're finally getting the message across that it is OK and Safe to come forward with these things, and that the starting point is to believe them (not the end point, but the starting point).

As for the difference... no. The difference is in the number and surrounding context. The women who've come forward against Weinstein took an actual risk to do so, there are over 100 of them, they show a consistent pattern of behavior on his part, and they have no reason to lie.

The probability slider for Weinstein gets pushed toward Yes by all that information
I think what helped to push things along is that Weinstein seems to be an unlikeable guy and abusive by Hollywood standards. He did it often to nearly every female actress. His actions are well known in Hollywood even before people officially spoke up about it. What about those that did it far less obvious manner to everyone?
The guy who accused George Takei is singular, he has been feuding politically with George Takei for the last year until he got blocked on social media and thus has a reason to lie. There is no pattern of behavior barring an interview on the Howard Stern show that only indicates that George Takei was normal in gay subculture in the 1970s (by modern standards what he was doing would be considered less acceptable).

For this, the Probability Slider moves toward no, then oscillates back toward yes somewhat given Howard Stern interview and how the events described might go too far. Ends up being more of a coin toss. He may not have done the thing he is accused of right now, but he likely did cross the line at some point.
But isn't it also harder for someone to speak out against a person like George Takei vs someone like Weinstein as well? It's easier for people to speak out against Weinstein because there are enough people who will believe them vs those that spoke up against Takei.
There are a lot of factors that go into it. I would say that would be fair assessment as well. The problem is, we don't even have the ability to make a back of the envelope assessment of those probabilities. Chances are, back when Takei was still active in the... Gay Singles social scene, he likely crossed the line with a number of people who wont say anything about it because A) It was normal at the time (and to some extent still is actually*) and they didn't care (no matter how cringe-worthy it might be considered today) B) Now he is very well-liked. But there is no way to know until those people come forward.

(*)If you go to a gay bar in the US, pretty standard flirting behavior is to stroke the inner thigh, and there is GOING to be some ass and cock grabbing that goes on if the flirting progresses. The only difference between the 1970s and now is that if someone objects, the touching is stopped. Back then it would have been more... It's hard to describe, but basically even once someone was in a gay bar or back at your house, there was a lot of self-loathing that had to be overcome, and it was hard to tell the difference between "No I am not interested" and "Yes I want to sleep with you, but I hate myself and thus have to be coaxed out of my pants". In the US at least the cultural norms surrounding that have (thank heavens) gotten better, but are not perfect.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Dragon Angel » 2017-11-13 05:45pm

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:35pm
(*)If you go to a gay bar in the US, pretty standard flirting behavior is to stroke the inner thigh, and there is GOING to be some ass and cock grabbing that goes on if the flirting progresses. The only difference between the 1970s and now is that if someone objects, the touching is stopped. Back then it would have been more... It's hard to describe, but basically even once someone was in a gay bar or back at your house, there was a lot of self-loathing that had to be overcome, and it was hard to tell the difference between "No I am not interested" and "Yes I want to sleep with you, but I hate myself and thus have to be coaxed out of my pants". In the US at least the cultural norms surrounding that have (thank heavens) gotten better, but are not perfect.
I haven't been to a gay bar ever, but current life circumstances are now opening me to the possibility of perhaps one day visiting one, so this is interesting to know.

I probably would have been ... a bit freaked out had I gone in and that happened. Even in situations like BDSM clubs I hadn't really thought that'd be a thing. I guess it's because this is somewhat of a culture I'm not much experienced in.
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I would dance and be merry, life would be would be a ding-a-derry, if I only had a brain!"

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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 05:49pm

Dragon Angel wrote:
2017-11-13 05:45pm
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:35pm
(*)If you go to a gay bar in the US, pretty standard flirting behavior is to stroke the inner thigh, and there is GOING to be some ass and cock grabbing that goes on if the flirting progresses. The only difference between the 1970s and now is that if someone objects, the touching is stopped. Back then it would have been more... It's hard to describe, but basically even once someone was in a gay bar or back at your house, there was a lot of self-loathing that had to be overcome, and it was hard to tell the difference between "No I am not interested" and "Yes I want to sleep with you, but I hate myself and thus have to be coaxed out of my pants". In the US at least the cultural norms surrounding that have (thank heavens) gotten better, but are not perfect.
I haven't been to a gay bar ever, but current life circumstances are now opening me to the possibility of perhaps one day visiting one, so this is interesting to know.

I probably would have been ... a bit freaked out had I gone in and that happened. Even in situations like BDSM clubs I hadn't really thought that'd be a thing. I guess it's because this is somewhat of a culture I'm not much experienced in.
BDSM clubs are a bit different because they have to put a very strong emphasis on affirmative consent due to what they're in to. It also varies from bar to bar. A gay sports bar is going to be different from the more... sexually charged...atmosphere of a dance club or cruising bar.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 05:50pm

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:35pm
There are a lot of factors that go into it. I would say that would be fair assessment as well. The problem is, we don't even have the ability to make a back of the envelope assessment of those probabilities. Chances are, back when Takei was still active in the... Gay Singles social scene, he likely crossed the line with a number of people who wont say anything about it because A) It was normal at the time (and to some extent still is actually*) and they didn't care (no matter how cringe-worthy it might be considered today) B) Now he is very well-liked. But there is no way to know until those people come forward.

(*)If you go to a gay bar in the US, pretty standard flirting behavior is to stroke the inner thigh, and there is GOING to be some ass and cock grabbing that goes on if the flirting progresses. The only difference between the 1970s and now is that if someone objects, the touching is stopped. Back then it would have been more... It's hard to describe, but basically even once someone was in a gay bar or back at your house, there was a lot of self-loathing that had to be overcome, and it was hard to tell the difference between "No I am not interested" and "Yes I want to sleep with you, but I hate myself and thus have to be coaxed out of my pants". In the US at least the cultural norms surrounding that have (thank heavens) gotten better, but are not perfect.
Isn't this a little problematic? People are effectively being rewarded for maybe crossing the line on some levels if they have to wait for an actual objection.

If this is also the system that applies to Hollywood, in which risk-takers are being rewarded on some level, does this not produce a culture in which it's hard to make any objections?
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 05:56pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 05:50pm
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:35pm
There are a lot of factors that go into it. I would say that would be fair assessment as well. The problem is, we don't even have the ability to make a back of the envelope assessment of those probabilities. Chances are, back when Takei was still active in the... Gay Singles social scene, he likely crossed the line with a number of people who wont say anything about it because A) It was normal at the time (and to some extent still is actually*) and they didn't care (no matter how cringe-worthy it might be considered today) B) Now he is very well-liked. But there is no way to know until those people come forward.

(*)If you go to a gay bar in the US, pretty standard flirting behavior is to stroke the inner thigh, and there is GOING to be some ass and cock grabbing that goes on if the flirting progresses. The only difference between the 1970s and now is that if someone objects, the touching is stopped. Back then it would have been more... It's hard to describe, but basically even once someone was in a gay bar or back at your house, there was a lot of self-loathing that had to be overcome, and it was hard to tell the difference between "No I am not interested" and "Yes I want to sleep with you, but I hate myself and thus have to be coaxed out of my pants". In the US at least the cultural norms surrounding that have (thank heavens) gotten better, but are not perfect.
Isn't this a little problematic? People are effectively being rewarded for maybe crossing the line on some levels if they have to wait for an actual objection.

If this is also the system that applies to Hollywood, in which risk-takers are being rewarded on some level, does this not produce a culture in which it's hard to make any objections?
It is a bit, yes. And it is changing slowly. Keep in mind, I am not saying "this is what should be" but "this is what is/was". Gay men are not immune feelings of sexual entitlement. It doesn't help that a lot of gay men drop their boundaries in those settings, and again, it is difficult to tell the difference between someone who wants to drop their boundaries and someone who feels socially pressured to not object when their boundaries are violated. At least these days, when someone says "No" or signals "No" physically, that objection is respected (and there is much less of the self-loathing to navigate). It could be better. Back in the 1970s... ugh.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 06:15pm

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:56pm
It is a bit, yes. And it is changing slowly. Keep in mind, I am not saying "this is what should be" but "this is what is/was". Gay men are not immune feelings of sexual entitlement. It doesn't help that a lot of gay men drop their boundaries in those settings, and again, it is difficult to tell the difference between someone who wants to drop their boundaries and someone who feels socially pressured to not object when their boundaries are violated. At least these days, when someone says "No" or signals "No" physically, that objection is respected (and there is much less of the self-loathing to navigate). It could be better. Back in the 1970s... ugh.
Except those are the exact arguments often made by those who forced themselves on women because they claim certain circumstances makes it hard to tell whether they are "truly" objecting. By the time someone said no, it's already too late because consent was not given in the first place.

I find it hard to think how it could be better if the system fundamentally rewards risk-takers. Such behaviors are still being encouraged on some levels even if people all talk about publically bad this might be. It feels like people are being forgiven for not asking for consent if they are seen as attractive by the person they touch.

Consent was still not given in the first place, but people do forgive some who did not ask for consent in the first place. Until that itself is addressed, I generally find a lot of party scenes to be rather problematic.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 06:51pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 06:15pm
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 05:56pm
It is a bit, yes. And it is changing slowly. Keep in mind, I am not saying "this is what should be" but "this is what is/was". Gay men are not immune feelings of sexual entitlement. It doesn't help that a lot of gay men drop their boundaries in those settings, and again, it is difficult to tell the difference between someone who wants to drop their boundaries and someone who feels socially pressured to not object when their boundaries are violated. At least these days, when someone says "No" or signals "No" physically, that objection is respected (and there is much less of the self-loathing to navigate). It could be better. Back in the 1970s... ugh.
Except those are the exact arguments often made by those who forced themselves on women because they claim certain circumstances makes it hard to tell whether they are "truly" objecting. By the time someone said no, it's already too late because consent was not given in the first place.

I find it hard to think how it could be better if the system fundamentally rewards risk-takers. Such behaviors are still being encouraged on some levels even if people all talk about publically bad this might be. It feels like people are being forgiven for not asking for consent if they are seen as attractive by the person they touch.

Consent was still not given in the first place, but people do forgive some who did not ask for consent in the first place. Until that itself is addressed, I generally find a lot of party scenes to be rather problematic.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 06:58pm

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 06:51pm
You are preaching to the choir. I am not justifying this. I am giving you the historical and cultural context under which it occurs.
I know. What I am saying is that there are many people who don't want to challenge the underlying problems, and instead seems happy with dealing with the symptoms. The idea of consent should not be constructed around whether you are feeling personally comfortable with being touched by someone. I don't think most people know the difference between giving consent and forgiving the lack of consent.

This is why I don't believe there will be any real significant changes in the long run.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Khaat » 2017-11-13 07:26pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 06:58pm
I don't think most people know the difference between giving consent and forgiving the lack of consent.

This is why I don't believe there will be any real significant changes in the long run.
This discussion itself (and the millions like it everywhere else) is drawing back the blinders and opening the doors for discussion about just that issue: if there is a failing to change over time, it's because some aren't discussing it, merely "like"-ing or "thoughts and prayers"-ing it when it comes up on their social media feed. But awareness is a good first step.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-13 08:48pm

Khaat wrote:
2017-11-13 07:26pm
This discussion itself (and the millions like it everywhere else) is drawing back the blinders and opening the doors for discussion about just that issue: if there is a failing to change over time, it's because some aren't discussing it, merely "like"-ing or "thoughts and prayers"-ing it when it comes up on their social media feed. But awareness is a good first step.
That's if there are people interested in discussing it. Our idea of having fun and meeting people is still based on putting people in a situation where such distinction is blurred. How many will take kindly to the idea that how they construct fun is wrong?
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Alyrium Denryle » 2017-11-13 09:08pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 08:48pm
Khaat wrote:
2017-11-13 07:26pm
This discussion itself (and the millions like it everywhere else) is drawing back the blinders and opening the doors for discussion about just that issue: if there is a failing to change over time, it's because some aren't discussing it, merely "like"-ing or "thoughts and prayers"-ing it when it comes up on their social media feed. But awareness is a good first step.
That's if there are people interested in discussing it. Our idea of having fun and meeting people is still based on putting people in a situation where such distinction is blurred. How many will take kindly to the idea that how they construct fun is wrong?
The current crop of younger people is already on board with that for the most part.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Elfdart » 2017-11-13 10:57pm

People should keep in mind that The Howard Stern Show is a radio comedy show where the hosts and guests play a game of oneupsmanship to see who can say the foulest, dirtiest, most perverted and most shocking things. So anything said on that show should be taken with several truckloads of salt. It's not like Meet The Press, where the comedy is unintentional, like in Steven Seagal movies -nor is it the equivalent of sworn testimony.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-11-13 11:11pm

We should remember that you can't remove uncertainty 100% from social event where sexual harassment is possible as there is a degree of subjectivity there, though obviously some things are "never OK".

The problem with those who use "blured lines" as a defense tend to try to use to defend actions that are most definetly in the "never OK" part of thing, thus trying to give the image that there was dout to whether what they did was wrong when there was no dout.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-11-14 02:29am

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-13 04:40pm
Also, note the reaction towards George Takei vs Weinstein. People are far more relucant to be angry at him compared to Weinstein's, perhaps due to him being more personally charismatic?
I think it's also that Takei has done real good for people, and that the accusation is singular and happened before many of us were even born.

It's like, there's a difference between a "groper" in the sense of "has ever groped anyone ever" and a "groper" as in "chronically gropes people because that's what they do." It seems fairly clear that Takei is not a groper in the latter sense, which means it's hard to say a lot about his basic character from a single incident in an eighty year lifetime.
Lord Revan wrote:
2017-11-13 11:11pm
We should remember that you can't remove uncertainty 100% from social event where sexual harassment is possible as there is a degree of subjectivity there, though obviously some things are "never OK".

The problem with those who use "blured lines" as a defense tend to try to use to defend actions that are most definetly in the "never OK" part of thing, thus trying to give the image that there was dout to whether what they did was wrong when there was no dout.
Is that a problem with EVERYONE who uses "social lines were blurred" as a defense? Or is it a problem with a specific class of people who deliberately exploit the blurred lines as professional seducers/harassers?
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-14 07:35am

Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 09:08pm
The current crop of younger people is already on board with that for the most part.
Are they? Most discussion about consent is still about sexual relationships, but simple physical contact is not well discussed. Much of our approach to reading consent to have physical interaction still revolves around reading non-verbal body language.
Lord Revan wrote:
2017-11-13 11:11pm
We should remember that you can't remove uncertainty 100% from social event where sexual harassment is possible as there is a degree of subjectivity there, though obviously some things are "never OK".
I dispute that. You can have 100% certainty if people aren't told that one of the easiest places to get laid is to go to a party or a club where everyone is drinking alcohol on some level. You can be 100% certain is understanding consent does not rely so heavily on "subtle body language" and if it is actually verbal. We think that asking a question like "can I touch you" is socially awkward when there shouldn't be any social stigma in asking such a simple question.

Our entire approach towards social events itself is problematic. And we are responsible for causing the problems because we've been encouraging such social events in the first place.
The problem with those who use "blured lines" as a defense tend to try to use to defend actions that are most definetly in the "never OK" part of thing, thus trying to give the image that there was dout to whether what they did was wrong when there was no dout.
They are used because society itself construct the idea of having a "blurred lines" in the first place. If there never was such a thing known as a "blurred line" of consent, do you think anyone would want to make such an argument in the first place?

There should not be a "blurred line" at all. It can be something very clear cut if people paid less emphasis on "feeling the right moment to make a move" based on body languages alone.

The idea of consent being a cat and mouse game is just plain idiotic. We have a problem with consent because we have a problem with the whole idea of flirting.
Simon_Jester wrote:
2017-11-14 02:29am
I think it's also that Takei has done real good for people, and that the accusation is singular and happened before many of us were even born.

It's like, there's a difference between a "groper" in the sense of "has ever groped anyone ever" and a "groper" as in "chronically gropes people because that's what they do." It seems fairly clear that Takei is not a groper in the latter sense, which means it's hard to say a lot about his basic character from a single incident in an eighty year lifetime.
[/quote]

But it's people like Takei that makes things more problematic. Weinstein is a special case in the sense that he is not that well-liked and being so flagrant about sexual abuse.

What enables such horrible behavior is the actions carried out by people "once or twice". It's the infrequent cases, done by people who are well-liked that is far more problematic. It's the kind of behavoir that people ( like you in this very argument) are slightly more tolerant about.

In other words, we aren't having a zero-toleration policy that would actually end such behavouir.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-11-14 08:41am

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-14 07:35am
Alyrium Denryle wrote:
2017-11-13 09:08pm
The current crop of younger people is already on board with that for the most part.
Are they? Most discussion about consent is still about sexual relationships, but simple physical contact is not well discussed. Much of our approach to reading consent to have physical interaction still revolves around reading non-verbal body language.
I'm not saying you're wrong to identify this as an issue, but you should recognize that if you want to fight this battle, you're going to fight against it at very, very heavy odds. Here's why.

Please note that I am not committing a naturalistic fallacy such as "this occurs in nature therefore it is right." I am saying that, as a blunt and crude reality, we cannot hope to do anything constructive if we are ignorant of natural phenomena. In this case...

Humans are members of the animal kingdom. As such, humans have instinctive courtship rituals, the same as any other animal species. If you look at other primate species, you find that they have certain signaling behaviors that are used during courtship and which lead towards two animals becoming mates. They adopt certain postures, carry out certain behaviors, touch or groom each other in certain fashions, and so on. Since apes and monkeys lack the power of speech, this courtship is of necessity 99% nonverbal.

Homo sapiens is not immune to this phenomenon. Humans also exhibit certain fairly consistent patterns of touch, body language, and facial expression as they court one another and evaluate each other's suitability as a mate. Moreover, we evolved with these patterns in play. They long predate our ability to speak. Our brains still contain automatic responses to these behavior patterns. This is equally true of both men and women.

Thus, you will find many cultures where, if you put young males and females together in an environment that is socially permissive of mating and courtship behaviors, they will start to approach each other, converse and interact, touch each other in certain areas such as the arm, then gradually escalate to closer and closer forms of touch until they move off to a secluded area to finish their standard homo sapiens courtship ritual.

This exists in a variety of cultures. In general, insofar as culture alters the process, it does so by brute force short-circuiting it. For instance, in a culture where all women are kept in purdah, wear burqas in public, and are forbidden from interacting with men without a male relative or husband present to chaperone them, traditional homo sapiens courtship cannot occur or can occur only under very unusual circumstances.
________________________________________________________

Now to 'fix' the problem of how nonverbal courtship behaviors create ambiguity and cause people to behave inappropriately, showing excessive romantic interest in uninterested persons... Well, you appear to propose that we adopt a cultural custom of making all consent and courtship behaviors very, very verbal.

This is not a bad idea in and of itself. But it is, to put it mildly, fighting an uphill battle against human biology.

At the present time, I doubt you will find any culture on Earth where humans that are courting each other 'automatically' start asking lots of questions in search of explicit verbal consent:

"I see that you've tilted your head, smiled at me, and batted your eyes. May I put my hand on your elbow?"

"Yes, please."

"Thank you. This is nice."

"Good to know. May I move a little closer and lean against you?"

"Sure thing."

"Do I have permission to call you honey?"

"Uh-huh! Now, please put your arm around my shoulder, if you're comfortable with that."

"No problem. I've started evaluating you as a possible medium-term romantic partner, by the way."

"Oh! That's interesting, because I was starting to tentatively consider evaluating you that way."
________________________________________________________

There would be nothing wrong with a society where people do this kind of thing. But if you actually try to visualize it, you may have a little trouble visualizing a starry-eyed young couple in the midst of falling in love with each other behaving this way. I know I do. To me, the exchange of dialogue I describe above sounds a little bit comical. And there's a reason for that.

Because, see... people don't work like that. Not in the ancestral environment, and not when thrown together at a party and told to figure it all out of their own free will and under their own power.

The way people do, empirically, work involves a lot of nonverbal courtship behaviors. They DO carry out this conversation about consent, courtship, and mating, or try to do so. But it's overwhelmingly done through body language and other nonverbal cues. This is precisely because our homo erectus and homo habilis ancestors had to be able to carry on the exact same conversation about consent, courtship, and mating... and said ancestors didn't have spoken language to do it with. So they evolved a protocol that didn't need to be spoken, and that's the one we use today.

Teaching the alternative would require a massive, exhaustive, ongoing effort to catch people early (possibly before puberty) and condition them to court each other in ways that are nowhere in their brain's list of instructions for "this is how to court people" or "this is how it looks when someone is courting me and signaling romantic interest."

Could you do it? Maybe. But it would be very difficult, require a high level of psychological sophistication, and work only in a very "top-down" model where there is some Relationship Czar who's responsible for deciding how everyone in society is going to court each other. Without that, people will make individual decisions of their own accord... And when acting individually without social conditioning to tell them not to, people fall back on the instinctive courtship rituals. For the same reason that babies instinctively try to walk on their feet with their head in the air, instead of trying to learn to walk on their hands.
Lord Revan wrote:
2017-11-13 11:11pm
We should remember that you can't remove uncertainty 100% from social event where sexual harassment is possible as there is a degree of subjectivity there, though obviously some things are "never OK".
I dispute that. You can have 100% certainty if people aren't told that one of the easiest places to get laid is to go to a party or a club where everyone is drinking alcohol on some level. You can be 100% certain is understanding consent does not rely so heavily on "subtle body language" and if it is actually verbal. We think that asking a question like "can I touch you" is socially awkward when there shouldn't be any social stigma in asking such a simple question.
Just asking "can I touch you" isn't going to cut it; you need to replace several steps in an ongoing mutual courtship dance with explicit spoken statements. Because a woman giving permission for a man to touch her shoulder is very, very different from the same woman giving permission for her to put his arm around her, which is in turn different from him giving her permission to put both arms around him (this consent is usually assumed by default but only because of traditional gender roles)... And all of the above are super different from either partner giving permission to touch the other's private parts.

A courtship ritual in which all consent is explicit, verbal, and affirmative would have to run through a lengthy checklist of steps that, normally, human lovers go through while courting. It would look a lot like the one I made up above... And it sounds pretty weird. Not because there's anything wrong with it as such, but just because it takes a huge amount of conversation we're evolved to think of as nonverbal, and moves it into a verbal domain we don't instinctively use for the purpose.
Our entire approach towards social events itself is problematic. And we are responsible for causing the problems because we've been encouraging such social events in the first place.
Well, we could socially segregate the sexes and completely bypass the human courtship ritual through arranged marriages or something, I guess? I mean seriously, what's the alternative you're proposing? If males and females are going to meet one another and form mating bonds, they have to have SOME way of meeting each other that makes it socially acceptable to court each other.
The problem with those who use "blured lines" as a defense tend to try to use to defend actions that are most definetly in the "never OK" part of thing, thus trying to give the image that there was dout to whether what they did was wrong when there was no dout.
They are used because society itself construct the idea of having a "blurred lines" in the first place. If there never was such a thing known as a "blurred line" of consent, do you think anyone would want to make such an argument in the first place?

There should not be a "blurred line" at all. It can be something very clear cut if people paid less emphasis on "feeling the right moment to make a move" based on body languages alone.

The idea of consent being a cat and mouse game is just plain idiotic. We have a problem with consent because we have a problem with the whole idea of flirting.
If nonverbal flirting didn't exist, WE wouldn't exist. Because our hominid ancestors would never have reproduced. Because they would have been stuck sitting around staring at each other awkwardly and not having any children. Maybe they'd hoping that they'd suddenly invent some magical superpower called 'language' so that they could ask each other if anyone wanted to have sex.

We can certainly create new cultural rituals surrounding courtship and mating that partly supplant the old nonverbal flirting behaviors. That is entirely possible. But it's not going to replace them entirely, or erase our brain's tendency to respond to those behaviors.
Simon_Jester wrote:
2017-11-14 02:29am
I think it's also that Takei has done real good for people, and that the accusation is singular and happened before many of us were even born.

It's like, there's a difference between a "groper" in the sense of "has ever groped anyone ever" and a "groper" as in "chronically gropes people because that's what they do." It seems fairly clear that Takei is not a groper in the latter sense, which means it's hard to say a lot about his basic character from a single incident in an eighty year lifetime.
But it's people like Takei that makes things more problematic. Weinstein is a special case in the sense that he is not that well-liked and being so flagrant about sexual abuse.
The many, many women raped by Weinstein might want to debate the idea that George Takei groping one man one time back in 1981 is "far more problematic" than Weinstein using his power in the film industry to coerce a small army of women into sleeping with him over a period of decades.

And I'm pretty sure Weinstein didn't start out his career as a serial rapist thinking "other people sometimes grab people or touch them, which means *I* can coerce dozens of people into sex guilt-free!"
In other words, we aren't having a zero-toleration policy that would actually end such behavouir.
Would a zero-tolerance policy, with ever-escalating penalties for breaching the code of sexual conduct, actually end the behavior? Or would it just keep chasing itself around in circles until it reached the point of "an eye for an eye leaves everybody blind?"
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by ray245 » 2017-11-14 09:25am

Simon_Jester wrote:
2017-11-14 08:41am
I'm not saying you're wrong to identify this as an issue, but you should recognize that if you want to fight this battle, you're going to fight against it at very, very heavy odds. Here's why.

Please note that I am not committing a naturalistic fallacy such as "this occurs in nature therefore it is right." I am saying that, as a blunt and crude reality, we cannot hope to do anything constructive if we are ignorant of natural phenomena. In this case...

Humans are members of the animal kingdom. As such, humans have instinctive courtship rituals, the same as any other animal species. If you look at other primate species, you find that they have certain signaling behaviors that are used during courtship and which lead towards two animals becoming mates. They adopt certain postures, carry out certain behaviors, touch or groom each other in certain fashions, and so on. Since apes and monkeys lack the power of speech, this courtship is of necessity 99% nonverbal.

Homo sapiens is not immune to this phenomenon. Humans also exhibit certain fairly consistent patterns of touch, body language, and facial expression as they court one another and evaluate each other's suitability as a mate. Moreover, we evolved with these patterns in play. They long predate our ability to speak. Our brains still contain automatic responses to these behavior patterns. This is equally true of both men and women.

Thus, you will find many cultures where, if you put young males and females together in an environment that is socially permissive of mating and courtship behaviors, they will start to approach each other, converse and interact, touch each other in certain areas such as the arm, then gradually escalate to closer and closer forms of touch until they move off to a secluded area to finish their standard homo sapiens courtship ritual.

This exists in a variety of cultures. In general, insofar as culture alters the process, it does so by brute force short-circuiting it. For instance, in a culture where all women are kept in purdah, wear burqas in public, and are forbidden from interacting with men without a male relative or husband present to chaperone them, traditional homo sapiens courtship cannot occur or can occur only under very unusual circumstances.
________________________________________________________

Now to 'fix' the problem of how nonverbal courtship behaviors create ambiguity and cause people to behave inappropriately, showing excessive romantic interest in uninterested persons... Well, you appear to propose that we adopt a cultural custom of making all consent and courtship behaviors very, very verbal.

This is not a bad idea in and of itself. But it is, to put it mildly, fighting an uphill battle against human biology.

At the present time, I doubt you will find any culture on Earth where humans that are courting each other 'automatically' start asking lots of questions in search of explicit verbal consent:

"I see that you've tilted your head, smiled at me, and batted your eyes. May I put my hand on your elbow?"

"Yes, please."

"Thank you. This is nice."

"Good to know. May I move a little closer and lean against you?"

"Sure thing."

"Do I have permission to call you honey?"

"Uh-huh! Now, please put your arm around my shoulder, if you're comfortable with that."

"No problem. I've started evaluating you as a possible medium-term romantic partner, by the way."

"Oh! That's interesting, because I was starting to tentatively consider evaluating you that way."
________________________________________________________

There would be nothing wrong with a society where people do this kind of thing. But if you actually try to visualize it, you may have a little trouble visualizing a starry-eyed young couple in the midst of falling in love with each other behaving this way. I know I do. To me, the exchange of dialogue I describe above sounds a little bit comical. And there's a reason for that.

Because, see... people don't work like that. Not in the ancestral environment, and not when thrown together at a party and told to figure it all out of their own free will and under their own power.

The way people do, empirically, work involves a lot of nonverbal courtship behaviors. They DO carry out this conversation about consent, courtship, and mating, or try to do so. But it's overwhelmingly done through body language and other nonverbal cues. This is precisely because our homo erectus and homo habilis ancestors had to be able to carry on the exact same conversation about consent, courtship, and mating... and said ancestors didn't have spoken language to do it with. So they evolved a protocol that didn't need to be spoken, and that's the one we use today.

Teaching the alternative would require a massive, exhaustive, ongoing effort to catch people early (possibly before puberty) and condition them to court each other in ways that are nowhere in their brain's list of instructions for "this is how to court people" or "this is how it looks when someone is courting me and signaling romantic interest."

Could you do it? Maybe. But it would be very difficult, require a high level of psychological sophistication, and work only in a very "top-down" model where there is some Relationship Czar who's responsible for deciding how everyone in society is going to court each other. Without that, people will make individual decisions of their own accord... And when acting individually without social conditioning to tell them not to, people fall back on the instinctive courtship rituals. For the same reason that babies instinctively try to walk on their feet with their head in the air, instead of trying to learn to walk on their hands.
And that is why I am doubtful that will be any meaningful change to the idea of consent. Alyrium Denryle think it will change, but I don't think most people will be willing to change in such a basic, fundamental manner. But then again, considering how different societies can differ on how relationship is conducted, it's not something set in stone.

But asking everyone to question the very basis on which they build their life around? I don't think anyone is interested beyond a mere philosophical discussion about the nature of humans.


Just asking "can I touch you" isn't going to cut it; you need to replace several steps in an ongoing mutual courtship dance with explicit spoken statements. Because a woman giving permission for a man to touch her shoulder is very, very different from the same woman giving permission for her to put his arm around her, which is in turn different from him giving her permission to put both arms around him (this consent is usually assumed by default but only because of traditional gender roles)... And all of the above are super different from either partner giving permission to touch the other's private parts.

A courtship ritual in which all consent is explicit, verbal, and affirmative would have to run through a lengthy checklist of steps that, normally, human lovers go through while courting. It would look a lot like the one I made up above... And it sounds pretty weird. Not because there's anything wrong with it as such, but just because it takes a huge amount of conversation we're evolved to think of as nonverbal, and moves it into a verbal domain we don't instinctively use for the purpose.
At the same time, we are taught from young to think it is weird. The idea of teenagehood being awkward is dependent on people having to learn the "rules of dating" on their own. We're taught to read non-verbal communications and rely heavily on it as a basis for consent and relationships. People find this process as "fun", and disregard any potential unfortunate consequences.
Well, we could socially segregate the sexes and completely bypass the human courtship ritual through arranged marriages or something, I guess? I mean seriously, what's the alternative you're proposing? If males and females are going to meet one another and form mating bonds, they have to have SOME way of meeting each other that makes it socially acceptable to court each other.
How about making it less dependent on social events where people drink more than usual and the idea of consent is "blurred"? It's problematic that you can't see an easy alternative to the current methods of courtship. It's why I doubt there is actually much will to actually talk about consent.
If nonverbal flirting didn't exist, WE wouldn't exist. Because our hominid ancestors would never have reproduced. Because they would have been stuck sitting around staring at each other awkwardly and not having any children. Maybe they'd hoping that they'd suddenly invent some magical superpower called 'language' so that they could ask each other if anyone wanted to have sex.

We can certainly create new cultural rituals surrounding courtship and mating that partly supplant the old nonverbal flirting behaviors. That is entirely possible. But it's not going to replace them entirely, or erase our brain's tendency to respond to those behaviors.
The whole idea of courtship is a very recent social phenomenon. And neither is nonverbal flirting the basis in which people form relationships and reproduce. People like Weinstein or Trump don't need to be good at nonverbal flirting to get married and have kids. Our modern society placed far too much emphasis on the idea of nonverbal flirting as if it somehow is the primary basis for why people get into a relationship of some form.

My contention is we are so attached to this idea of nonverbal flirting that we don't want to seriously think about other alternatives.

The many, many women raped by Weinstein might want to debate the idea that George Takei groping one man one time back in 1981 is "far more problematic" than Weinstein using his power in the film industry to coerce a small army of women into sleeping with him over a period of decades.

And I'm pretty sure Weinstein didn't start out his career as a serial rapist thinking "other people sometimes grab people or touch them, which means *I* can coerce dozens of people into sex guilt-free!"
My point is not that Takei is worse than Weinstein. It's that people's personal trauma does not correlate to a wider, more entrenched way of thinking. What enabled Weinstein to act in such a way is because people are on some level tolerating such behavior on a milder scale. The manner in which Weinstein used his power is coercive and trying to place himself into the "blurred lines" created by wider society.

Weinstein is an extreme case even by Hollywood standards. But there are other cases that are less extreme, but more widespread. Those are what I meant by being more problematic.

It's easy to call out someone who has done something extreme once they lost their power to coerce people. It's harder to call out people for more milder abuse.
Would a zero-tolerance policy, with ever-escalating penalties for breaching the code of sexual conduct, actually end the behavior? Or would it just keep chasing itself around in circles until it reached the point of "an eye for an eye leaves everybody blind?"
Why would it keep chasing itself in circles? Destroy the idea of "blurred lines" and make consent explicit and clear. Sure, non-verbal flirting might be more "fun" for most people, but if their idea of fun produce the set of circumstances that result in people being hurt by it? It feels like an extremely selfish thinking.

I think that our current system of "flirting" gave an unfair amount of power and influence to males. It puts the aggressor in a more dominant and rewarding position in a relationship.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-11-14 03:16pm

ray245 wrote:
2017-11-14 09:25am
And that is why I am doubtful that will be any meaningful change to the idea of consent. Alyrium Denryle think it will change, but I don't think most people will be willing to change in such a basic, fundamental manner. But then again, considering how different societies can differ on how relationship is conducted, it's not something set in stone.

But asking everyone to question the very basis on which they build their life around? I don't think anyone is interested beyond a mere philosophical discussion about the nature of humans.
So which is it? Are you advocating a social change to make all consent-seeking and consent-giving behaviors explicit and verbal? Or are you saying that you don't think this can happen, because humans instinctively use implicit, nonverbal behaviors to signal consent-seeking and giving?

Or are you doing both at the same time?
Just asking "can I touch you" isn't going to cut it; you need to replace several steps in an ongoing mutual courtship dance with explicit spoken statements. Because a woman giving permission for a man to touch her shoulder is very, very different from the same woman giving permission for her to put his arm around her, which is in turn different from him giving her permission to put both arms around him (this consent is usually assumed by default but only because of traditional gender roles)... And all of the above are super different from either partner giving permission to touch the other's private parts.

A courtship ritual in which all consent is explicit, verbal, and affirmative would have to run through a lengthy checklist of steps that, normally, human lovers go through while courting. It would look a lot like the one I made up above... And it sounds pretty weird. Not because there's anything wrong with it as such, but just because it takes a huge amount of conversation we're evolved to think of as nonverbal, and moves it into a verbal domain we don't instinctively use for the purpose.
At the same time, we are taught from young to think it is weird. The idea of teenagehood being awkward is dependent on people having to learn the "rules of dating" on their own. We're taught to read non-verbal communications and rely heavily on it as a basis for consent and relationships. People find this process as "fun", and disregard any potential unfortunate consequences.
The thing is, human beings are not tabula rasa. We're not taught to read non-verbal communications as a way of signaling consent-seeking and consent-giving. We do so automatically. In the ancestral environment, people do much the same thing. Animals do much the same thing.

I mean, it takes time and awkwardness to learn how to walk, too... but we all do it, without being conditioned or acculturated to do so. Crawling would be safer- but we don't keep doing it forever.

At a bare minimum, we need to take into account how humans court one another when it comes time to build up structures around our mating customs, just as we take into account that people walk on their legs when designing buildings.
Well, we could socially segregate the sexes and completely bypass the human courtship ritual through arranged marriages or something, I guess? I mean seriously, what's the alternative you're proposing? If males and females are going to meet one another and form mating bonds, they have to have SOME way of meeting each other that makes it socially acceptable to court each other.
How about making it less dependent on social events where people drink more than usual and the idea of consent is "blurred"? It's problematic that you can't see an easy alternative to the current methods of courtship. It's why I doubt there is actually much will to actually talk about consent.
Removing the alcohol won't change the courtship behaviors. It just makes people sober while carrying out those behaviors. Which is certainly an improvement! But it's not the same thing. Humans don't use nonverbal courtship behaviors because they're drunk, they use these behaviors because they're human.

The thing is, the behaviors are still there. Furthermore, you're now adding yet another uphill battle for yourself, because you're basically proposing to abolish the serving of alcohol at parties.
If nonverbal flirting didn't exist, WE wouldn't exist. Because our hominid ancestors would never have reproduced. Because they would have been stuck sitting around staring at each other awkwardly and not having any children. Maybe they'd hoping that they'd suddenly invent some magical superpower called 'language' so that they could ask each other if anyone wanted to have sex.

We can certainly create new cultural rituals surrounding courtship and mating that partly supplant the old nonverbal flirting behaviors. That is entirely possible. But it's not going to replace them entirely, or erase our brain's tendency to respond to those behaviors.
The whole idea of courtship is a very recent social phenomenon.
Where "courtship" is defined in the sense that it's used in animal behavior... um, no, no it is not? Animals have behaviors along these lines, we evolved with such behaviors. Virtually everyone uses them on one level or another, to one degree or another. They tie pretty seamlessly into most of our means of displaying affection.
And neither is nonverbal flirting the basis in which people form relationships and reproduce. People like Weinstein or Trump don't need to be good at nonverbal flirting to get married and have kids. Our modern society placed far too much emphasis on the idea of nonverbal flirting as if it somehow is the primary basis for why people get into a relationship of some form.
The point I'm making is that when humans form spontaneous romantic pair-bonds, they do these things. It is not something our current culture invented. The only way to get rid of it is to artificially segregate and control the sexes so that they don't get the opportunity to meet and form spontaneous bonds, which would require us to turn back the clock on gender relations in a lot of other ways in exchange for eliminating the particular problem of sexual harassment.
The many, many women raped by Weinstein might want to debate the idea that George Takei groping one man one time back in 1981 is "far more problematic" than Weinstein using his power in the film industry to coerce a small army of women into sleeping with him over a period of decades.

And I'm pretty sure Weinstein didn't start out his career as a serial rapist thinking "other people sometimes grab people or touch them, which means *I* can coerce dozens of people into sex guilt-free!"
My point is not that Takei is worse than Weinstein. It's that people's personal trauma does not correlate to a wider, more entrenched way of thinking. What enabled Weinstein to act in such a way is because people are on some level tolerating such behavior on a milder scale. The manner in which Weinstein used his power is coercive and trying to place himself into the "blurred lines" created by wider society.
I don't feel you're adequately supporting this claim.
Would a zero-tolerance policy, with ever-escalating penalties for breaching the code of sexual conduct, actually end the behavior? Or would it just keep chasing itself around in circles until it reached the point of "an eye for an eye leaves everybody blind?"
Why would it keep chasing itself in circles? Destroy the idea of "blurred lines" and make consent explicit and clear. Sure, non-verbal flirting might be more "fun" for most people, but if their idea of fun produce the set of circumstances that result in people being hurt by it? It feels like an extremely selfish thinking.

I think that our current system of "flirting" gave an unfair amount of power and influence to males. It puts the aggressor in a more dominant and rewarding position in a relationship.
Women use nonverbal signals too, you know. This human behavior pattern was not invented to benefit men; it evolved for both sexes to jointly signal each other's romantic interest or lack thereof.

If you try to eliminate it, you're going to fail. Just like if you passed a law outlawing walking, you'd see a constant stream of toddlers breaking that law, because babies learn to walk on autopilot, without direct parental input.
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Re: Harvey Weinstein: fall of Hollywood player they once called ‘God’

Post by Lonestar » 2017-11-30 01:29pm

Oh no not Garrison Keilor too
"The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles."

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