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Trigger Warning: This post is about sexual harassment/abuse and homophobia. Some of the language following this will be quite strong.
Some of my friends are going to read this and wonder who the hell actually wrote this essay. For the very first time in my life, I am saying someone should not have come out. That someone is Kevin Spacey, and the only reason he came out was to change the topic of conversation from him being sexually inappropriate with a 14-year-old Anthony Rapp to him being praised for being brave. This is not OK.
In a post-Harvey Weinstein world, sexual assault/abuse survivors are coming forward and telling their stories. It's a brave thing for them to do, no matter how much time has passed since the incidents. No longer will I be a party to using the word alleged involving these crimes. Weinstein and Spacey both admitted to doing wrong, even without using those words, then tried to pivot the conversation to something else. And unlike the White House, I do not think anyone stepping forward with their stories is lying. It is the job of the accused to prove their innocence.
In the case of Spacey, maybe he was drunk. Rapp certainly implied that in his story, and Spacey said he didn't remember, but apologized. Great. A 26-year-old coming onto a 14-year-old is nasty and disgusting and illegal. An apology is the least he owes Rapp, but there is no getting his innocence back. But to use this scandal as an opportunity to come out is utter bull pucky. Yes, I avoided swearing, but just barely. I am madder than Ann Coulter when confronted with the truth about Trump right now.
What has my blood pressure rising faster than the number of Mueller indictments? Kevin Spacey has had plenty of time to come out of the closet. He has always dodged the questions or said it was none of our business. I can respect that; I don't like it, but everyone has the right to make their own choices (I hear all of you giving me the side eye). Why come out now? The answer is clearly to change the conversation about what happened and to make people forget about poor Anthony Rapp.
Sadly, it's working with a certain segment of the population. Go on any site that has this story and read the comment sections. It is disgusting how much these people are willing to blame the victim and the victim's parents. Guess what? Even if somebody went to an adult party, that does make it OK for an adult to try and have sex with a teenager, no matter how much Trump or Larry Flynt tells you that it is normal. Some might argue with me that 18 and 14 are close and that makes it OK. That's not what we're talking about here; Spacey was 26 freaking years old, Rapp was 14. That's like saying Ke$ha and Britney are the same.
Before I get into more trouble for using beloved pop stars as analogies, let's talk about how some people who don't like gays already accuse us all of being pedophiles. I can promise you right now that with all of the gay men I know—and there are a lot—none of us are looking for someone that is inappropriate for our age. What Kevin Spacey has done, though, is said, "maybe I hit on a 14-year-old, but I'm gay, so feel sorry for me." Yes, that sonofabitch actually gave the dolts an argument. That is not OK. Again, why not just apologize and then come out later, or keep your private life to yourself like you have done all of these years?
Now, Spacey owes Rapp a real apology and an apology to the LGBTQIA community as a whole. We weren't good enough for him to support publicly before now, but he will sure as hell use us as he tries to weather this storm. It would only be fitting for the community to turn their backs on him. However in the immortal words of Former First Lady Michelle Obama, "When they go low, we go high."
Of course, it's not just Spacey who has done things like this. Jason Dottley, best known for his turn on Sordid Lives: The Series and a string of Billboard Top 40 hits, has revealed he has been sexually harassed by a former agent, an executive at Warner Brothers, and many more men in power. These incidents happened when he first arrived in Hollywood and was barely legal. So why haven't I called those people out like I did Spacey? Because Dottley has not named names, and he has already endured enough, and I will not be the one who presses for names.
We need to care for the victims of these predators. Show them that they are cared about and that we have their backs. The first step is shaming someone like Kevin Spacey who uses this horrible scandal to turn the conversation to him being an out gay man (and let's not talk about his word choice with that either). He is lower than the scum of the Earth for this, just a step above Harvey Weinstein. And I am positive that he will fall lower than that.