Alec Baldwin blamed the longstanding culture of sexual harassment in Hollywood partially on victims who take financial settlements, and the backlash was so fierce that he’s getting off Twitter for a while.
What did Baldwin say?
Here are his comments, taken from an interview with PBS NewsHour:
“When you talked about Harvey Weinstein in the business, you knew that he was highly intrusive in the process of making films … you knew he was a very intense guy … and last but not least, you heard the rumor that he raped Rose McGowan. You heard that over and over — we heard that for decades. And nothing was done.”
“Rose McGowan took a payment of $100,000 and settled her case with him. And it was for Rose McGowan to prosecute that case.”
“When women take money and are silenced by that money — even though they took the money and were silenced because they were told beyond the money it was the right thing for them to do, keep quiet, don’t make too many waves, it’s going to hurt your career — when they do it, nonetheless, does it set back that course of change? That’s an issue, I think.”
Baldwin was accused of victim-blaming for putting the responsibility for decades of unreported sexual assault on women, especially when he admitted that people heard rumors about rape and harassment. McGowan and others on Twitter did not react kindly.
Weinstein blocked Argento and sent a hostile response to her boyfriend, chef Anthony Bourdain.
Baldwin tweeted a six-part message apologizing and announcing his Twitter hiatus.
A bad week
Baldwin has had a stretch of negative press recently, beginning last week when he admitted to his own sexist behavior.
“I certainly have treated women in a very sexist way. I’ve bullied women,” Baldwin said during a media event. “I’ve overlooked women. I’ve underestimated women. Not as a rule. From time to time, I’ve done what a lot of men do, which is … when you don’t treat women the same way you treat men. You don’t. I’m from a generation where you really don’t and I’d like that to change. I really would like that to change.”