Though the #MeToo movement began as a legitimate effort to expose powerful men who exploit their privilege and wealth to abuse women, some claim it now serves as nothing more than a means for frustrated women to air dirty laundry about their former partners.
As an example, consider the dirty laundry that actress and model Chloe Dykstra aired last week about her former partner, comedian Chris Hardwick.
Hardwick is best known for leading a cult of zombie super-fans as the upbeat host of AMC’s “Talking Dead.”
In a lengthy screed posted to Medium Thursday, Dykstra described Hardwick’s controlling and “abusive” behavior during their voluntary three-year relationship.
She claimed he had imposed rules on her prohibiting her from going out at night and maintaining male friends, but she admitted that she had accepted every rule without complaint.
She claimed he had sometimes cajoled her into sex by reminding her that he had broken up with his previous girlfriend because of “the lack of sex,” but she readily admitted, “I did go along with it out of fear of losing him.”
And she claimed that after she had left Hardwick, he had sought to get her blacklisted in Hollywood. But she also admitted that he had been aided in his efforts by a woman, and not just any woman — rather, a former friend of hers who apparently had also been angry with her.
Notice the abundance of “buts” with her story …
I quietly posted an article today, unlisted on Medium. It clearly made the rounds. I’m overwhelmed and I want to thank all of you for your support and kind words- they mean so much to me. I may take some time off the internet, please know your support means everything to me.
— Chloe Dykstra (@skydart) June 15, 2018
While Hardwick most certainly sounds like a jerk, it should be noted that Dykstra had voluntarily remained with him for years. And even after their breakup she had waited additional years before taking any action against her former partner.
Note also that the actions taken by Dykstra certainly didn’t involve the police, namely because Hardwick’s own actions (which didn’t include any violence) are hard to legally classify as abuse. Consent counts for everything, and Dykstra unfortunately provided it.
Despite these considerations, and despite the fact that this matter ultimately remains a “he said, she said” issue — Hardwick has reportedly denied the allegations — the comedian’s life and career are already effectively over.
Within days of Dykstra’s piece being published, AMC pulled a weekly show Hardwick used to host, and the company Nerdist Industries completely disavowed him. This despite the fact that Hardwick is the one who originally formed the company in 2012.
Good bye due process, and hello rush to judgments …
Even if Dykstra’s allegations turn out to be true, it still remains unclear why airing out her dirty laundry counts as a #MeToo accomplishment.
But her allegations do bring to mind a couple tweets recently posted by free-thinking conservative Candace Owens.
The entire premise of #metoo is that women are stupid, weak & inconsequential.
Too stupid to know what men might want if you come to their hotel room late at night.
Too weak to turn around and tell someone not to touch your ass again.
Too inconsequential to realize this.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) June 11, 2018
Biggest problem with the #metoo movement is that it turned sexual assault into a trend and simultaneously drowned out the voices of real rape victims— who deserve to be heard.
I will speak about all of this at #YWLS2018 in a few days.
It’s time for real women empowerment.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) June 11, 2018
While it’s a bit much to malign “the entire premise of #metoo,” Dykstra’s column does lend credence to Owens’ theory that the movement’s current “trend” (that of women using #MeToo to air dirty laundry) is “drown[ing] out the voices of real rape victims — who deserve to be heard.”
During an appearance on Fox News last Friday, Owens revealed that she received a surprising amount of support for these tweets.
“I got so many messages of support saying, ‘Thank you, I’ve been saying this for a long time.’ In the comments, there were rape victims that said that they felt that the #MeToo movement diminished their rapes because everything was being considered sexual assault. So it’s a conversation that needs to be had,” she said.
Perhaps she’s right?
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