Lead by those they have mistreated, there has a been a vigorous culling of the most unethical males within industries from music to television and more. Speaking up about abuse or an inappropriate interaction is hard. Yet, as more women come forward — shaming those who are abusing their positions and stature — it is only encouraging more of the same.
Following the sexual assault allegations made against Russel Simmons by model Keri Claussen Khalighi and screenwriter Jenny Lumet, the business mogul has been riding a downward spiral. He stepped down from several leadership positions — including his post at Def Jam — and J.C. Penney has dropped his clothing line.
Adding more fuel to the fire, Insecure actress Amanda Seales is coming forward with her own story about Simmons. She opened up only after fans continuously asked for her thoughts on the Rush Communications CEO.
In a recent Instagram video, the actress referenced an older video she posted about her time in a “very important man’s office.”
Within seconds of the recent post, the video flashes back to the old video, where she said: “While in a very important man’s office, talking about working together: ‘Uhh, have we ever f–ked?’ ‘No.’ ‘Oh, right. Cause I would’ve remembered that, right?'”
“So that’s my thoughts on that,” she concluded following the flashback, after revealing that the “very important man” was Simmons.
After revealing that it was hard for her to share her story, she defended women who wait to call out their abusers. She then urged others to understand the plight of someone abused by a person more respected by society at large than the victim.
“You wait because as a woman raised in a patriarchal, ‘Bros before H–s’, sexist, ‘but what were you wearing’ society you understand power dynamics and that even when there are witnesses to any level of sexual harassment/assault it will always be you who is questioned for incurring the offense. You wait because you know your vision is bigger than their indiscretion and refuse to let it derail you from your goals. You wait because you don’t even want to acknowledge the f–kery for longer than you have to when you know the odds are there will be no consequences, you’ll be dismissed, or worse defiled yet again and would rather get on with the positive things in your life.”
Seales went on to say that speaking “defamatory truths” against someone within your own culture is especially hard, as it can taint the whole community. “It is not okay. It is not the culture. It is not your fault. Expose them,” she concluded.
Culling of the Guys
Alongside celebs like Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Ben Affleck, Ryan Seacrest, and Nick Carter, Simmons is fighting a losing battle against highly-publicized sexual harassment allegations. As soon as Khalighi and Lumet’s allegations hit the internet and publication headlines, Simmons issued a statement commenting on the uprising of female empowerment while noting that he is innocent of all claims.
“This is an important and critical time for the empowerment of women and men who have been harassed. I have been a public figure for all of my adult life,” the producer and Def Jam Recordings co-founder responded. “And when you are in that arena over decades, you can find yourself in a position where you are vulnerable and susceptible to claims that are untrue.”
He has yet to respond to Seales’ allegations. However, fans have showered the Insecure star with tons of positive feedback and well-wishes.
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