It will be interesting to see how this report progresses and gets reported. Dunham defended the writer and then immediately apologized in the backlash.
Every woman who comes forward deserves to be heard, fully and completely, and our relationship with the accused should not be part of the calculation anyone makes when examining her case. Every person and every feminist should be required to hear her. Under patriarchy, ‘I believe you’ is essential. Until we are all believed, none of us will be believed. We apologize to any women who have been disappointed.
Now, Dunham is embroiled in a completely different controversy, but I suspect it is related to the backlash from her original defence of Miller.
At this point, I’m apprehensive. As ambiguous as everything is, I am getting a sense of a kind of hysteria around many of these allegations where the responses are far more extreme than rational. I think others may start feeling the same way.
Let’s not kid ourselves: Men still dominate positions of power in nearly every U.S. industry. Heads are only rolling because those same men have decided the costs of ignoring sexual harassment and assault claims are simply too high.
That calculus could easily change, and if it does — and I believe it will — the swing will be stunningly swift. Which doesn’t mean women should stop talking. But it does mean we need to demand more than individual firings. We need to ensure that workplaces have clear reporting mechanisms to formalize what is currently too often an ad-hoc process. And we need to push for real female power — for women to take the place of many of the men currently at the top of nearly every industry. That won’t totally prevent abuse, but it certainly would lessen it.