Rose McGowan facilitated a roundtable discussion for New York magazine’s The Cut recently that brought together women who have accused Harvey Weinstein, President Trump, Louis C.K. and others of sexual misconduct.
The actress, who has been an outspoken proponent of the #MeToo movement, did not mince words when she pointed out that the men being brought down by the allegations are just part of the greater problem.
“I would challenge the media to stop using the word ‘alleged,'” she said. “My beef is really with all the people who are complicit. It’s the first time in history women are being believed, even though we get slagged.”
McGowan also listened as several of the other women spoke out about their own experiences being shamed and at times, threatened, after going public with their experiences.
“I stayed silent for a long time because I didn’t feel like there was a safe environment to be able to voice this,” Mimi Haleyi, one of the women who has accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct, said. Added Rebekah Corey, who last month alleged that comedian Louis C.K. masturbated in front of her, “I’m getting death threats and I’m getting ripped apart and … getting all this free hate every single day,” for coming forward with her story.
Despite the backlash, however, the women at the roundtable agreed that seeing other women come forward about their experiences was empowering even as it was terrifying.
“I had a tremendous amount of self-blame until those women came forward and were published, and then I kind of felt like ‘Wow. Things are shifting, I can share this experience,'” Weinstein-accuser Dominique Hewitt said.
McGowan recently made headlines after she blasted Meryl Streep on Twitter for what she perceived to be Streep’s complicity in Weinstein’s behavior.
In response, Streep issued a statement in which she said she was not “deliberately silent” on the issue; she was, instead, never aware of Weinstein’s alleged assaults in the first place.
On Tuesday, posters reminiscent of guerrilla art by artist Barbara Kruger appeared around Los Angeles depicting Streep with a red-and-white sign over her eyes with the words “She knew.”
It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the signage.