In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to discuss the Harvey Weinstein sex scandal – would you prefer to die on your feet or live on your knees?
First a quick update:
The Breakup Test
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Recovering from years of sexual abuse
Donna Mae DePola author of “Twelve Tins” was sexually abused since age 4 and by age 8 she started doing drugs. It was also revealed that her father had been filming the rapes. How does a woman recover from this experience?
Now, let’s talk about the Harvey Weinstein sex scandal – would you prefer to die on your feet or live on your knees?
By now, most people are aware of the Harvey Weinstein story: one of Hollywood’s most powerful movie producers is exposed to the public as being accused as a sexual predator who allegedly sexually harassed and raped various women over several decades; 8 women received settlements, and, everyone in Hollywood knew about Weinstein’s behavior and no one did anything to stop him.
Why did no one actually stop him?
He was extremely powerful, people were afraid, and there was more to gain by either playing the game, being a pawn in it or, simply remaining quiet.
In fact, according to the NY Times, the primary reason for this ‘secret’ finally being exposed is that Weinstein was losing power over the past few years.
In other words, the fear and the payoff were waning.
Immediately, what comes to mind are the famous revolutionary words:
“It’s better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.”
– Emiliano Zapata, a leading figure in the Mexican Revolution of 1910
All the people who surrounded Weinstein made a choice to live on their knees and become his slaves.
It is critical to understand that Weinstein only got away with what he did and for so long because men and women were willing to allow it.
According to actress Rose McGowan, Ben Affleck had told her that he knew about Weinstein’s behavior. McGowan is today accusing Weinstein of raping her; in 1997, she accepted a settlement of $100,000 over an incident in a hotel room and in which, Weinstein never accepted or agreed to any wrongdoing.
Why did neither of them go to the police?
Seth McFarlane knew about Weinstein; he made a joke on stage during the Oscars about Weinstein. What else did he do to stop Weinstein?
Brad Pitt knew about Weinstein; he confronted Weinstein in 1996 warning him that if he ever again touched his then girlfriend Gwyneth Paltrow who was 22 he would give Weinstein a ‘Missouri whooping.’ Weinstein had touched Paltrow and suggested they go to the bedroom for massages. But, Pitt went on to be involved in 2 movies with Weinstein, and Paltrow starred in Weinstein’s “Shakespeare in Love.”
Jane Fonda, an active women’s rights advocate, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour that she “found out about Harvey about a year ago…I’m ashamed that I didn’t say anything right then.”
There were also women who were complicit in Weinstein’s behavior – women who would set up meetings for Weinstein with young Hollywood hopeful women, all the while knowing Weinstein’s intentions and modus operandi.
“I will also state clearly that the only way that sexual harassment and assault will end on a grand scale is for men to become involved and for men to speak up and stop other men from doing it.”
There were male talent agents who were also complicit by setting up meetings with Weinstein for their female talent, all the while fully knowing what Weinstein was going to do.
Movie maker Quentin Tarantino claims he is shocked by the news. Weinstein has produced every Tarantino movie since 1994’s Pulp Fiction and yet Tarantino cries out that he knew nothing and refers to the accusations as “revelations” even though, in his own words, he calls him “my friend for 25 years Harvey Weinstein.”
“For the last week I’ve been stunned and heartbroken about the revelations that have come to light about my friend for 25 years Harvey Weinstein,” Tarantino said in a statement tweeted by Amber Tamblyn.
Additionally, the further we go back in time, the harder it was for female victims of sexual assault or even rape to speak up. They would be castigated, slimed or shunned. That culture is changing.
However, I also think of Rosa Parks. She didn’t have anyone on her side when on December 1, 1955, she refused to surrender her seat to a white passenger on a segregated Montgomery, Alabama bus. As a result, Parks lost her job and endured death threats for years to come. However, Montgomery lifted the law requiring segregation on public buses. Parks was willing to risk her life for what was right and to help others!
Rosa Parks was willing to die on her feet rather than live on her knees!
How many other people in Hollywood can say the same thing?
How many other people in Hollywood who knew, were connected to or were involved with Weinstein were willing to risk anything at all to stop Weinstein and thus, protect other women?
I will also state clearly that the only way that sexual harassment and assault will end on a grand scale is for men to become involved and for men to speak up and stop other men from doing it.
Men will have to teach their sons to control their urges and to respect women and themselves.
A woman on a TV show recently stated to me, “We’re not animals.”
I responded, ‘We are animals; we do have animal drives, urges and instincts. We need to learn to control our urges and desires.’
Finally, each one of us has the choice in every moment to “die on your feet” or “live on your knees.”
I remember meeting him, feeling like “oh, I need to make a good impression, maybe he’ll get me an acting job”.
–Lisa Rose recounting her experiences with Weinstein in 1998 when she was 22 years of age. Rose resigned from her position and never gave into Weinstein.
Also read more about the people who knew about Weinstein and did nothing.
If you need personal help and guidance to overcome anxiety, loss or trauma – book a one-on-one session with me.
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist
Anointed “The Woman Expert” by WGN Chicago, Patrick Wanis PhD is a renowned Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert who developed SRTT therapy (Subconscious Rapid Transformation Technique) and is teaching it to other practitioners. Wanis’ clientele ranges from celebrities and CEOs to housewives and teenagers. CNN, BBC, FOX News, MSNBC & major news outlets worldwide consult Wanis for his expert insights and analysis on sexuality, human behavior and women’s issues. Wanis is the first person ever to do hypnotherapy on national TV – on the Montel Williams show.