Thursday, June 7, 2018

Harvey Weinstein Might Beat The Rap

Mira Sorvino wants Harvey Weinstein to plead guilty. I’ll bet she does. Here’s why: I think he can beat the rap. In fact, here’s how I would do it if I was appointed his lawyer...

First, I’d move to get all the rapes tried together, or at least to be allowed to discuss them all. That sounds suicidal, doesn’t it? Maybe not. As Stalin said, one death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic. It’s also a lot harder to believe when you’re talking about rich and powerful victims who benefited from their own rapes.

So here is my opening. I would begin with the story of trendyness in Hollywood:
Hollywood is a place of trends. When something becomes hip, everyone who is anyone needs to be seen doing it. Being a victim in one form or another has been a trend many times. What’s more, being a victim can be excellent public relations when you find yourself in trouble.

This past year, it became gauche to be a victim of sexual assault. Why? Because being a victim of sexual assault is the perfect insulation for a lot of flaws. Get seen in a magazine showing off your wealth? Better make yourself a victim. Get named as one of the nastiest actresses to work with in Hollywood? Make yourself a victim. No one will question about that lousy tip you left or the way you smacked that makeup artist when the press is going on about you being victimized. Nasty to your kids? Ugly divorce? Career dried up? Too old to get cast? Can’t get headlines to save your life? Make yourself a victim. It’s no coincidence that so many actors reveal their childhood abuse stories after getting a few too many bad headlines.

What does this have to do with our case?

Well, if the prosecution is to be believed, starting more than 20 years ago, Harvey went on a raping spree that lasted until only a few months ago. In that time, he raped nearly 200 of the most powerful, prominent, outspoken women in Hollywood. Women, by the way, who would work with him year after year on film after film. Women who visited his house, thanked him at awards shows, and went to his parties after their supposed rapes. Women who said nothing even as 199 other women were supposedly raped. Does that make sense to you? It shouldn’t.

But the allegations have been made, so what are we to make of these allegation?

Let’s start with how they arose. About a year ago, Harvey’s name was brought up by a woman whose case we’ll talk about more specifically later. This woman was dogged and determined to have Harvey prosecuted and it became clear that names of all the women with whom Harvey had slept over the years would come out... women whose careers he made and who were now happily married.

Did Harvey sleep with these women? Yes. He slept with any woman he could. Was that right or wrong? It doesn’t make him a nice person, that’s for sure, but it doesn’t make him a rapist either. Harvey slept with each of these women who now accuses him. Each time, the sex was consensual. Each time, he went on to happily cast his lovers in his films. Even after they stopped sleeping together, he helped to build their careers.

At the time, it must have seemed like a miracle for these women to have found a way to stardom. But now it would be an embarrassment if it was revealed that they had slept their way to the top through Harvey. Fortunately, they had a golden ticket to avoid this embarrassment. As I said, about a year ago, it became the in thing for actresses everywhere to declare that they had been victims of sexual assault and abuse and rape.

All they needed to do was convert the deeds they did so willingly twenty years prior and turned those into rapes. Suddenly, they are the victims. Bad publicity... marital strife... embarrassment avoided. And that is why we’re here today.

... unless you believe that these powerful, vocal, wealthy women each chose to remain silent about the man who raped them and let him go on to do it to another 199 women.
After this, I would first take on the one or two cases that are provably fake – the opportunists – by showing they weren’t even in town when the rape happened or that their details are provably false. I would use that to cast an atmosphere of distrust for the evidence. Then I would point out the utter lack of physical evidence, i.e. rape kits. Finally, I would spend as much time as I could flooding the jury with cards, letters, thank you speeches, etc. showing these women saying good things about Harvey.

What do you think? Does he stand a chance?


Tennessee Jed said...

Maybe ... I just wonder f these high profile cases ever get decided on law or fact. Look at O.J. I wonder if Hillary Clinton would be convicted today no matter what the evidence. Your points are good ones though. If people think Harvey is a jerk, they might convict him regardless of your argument

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, They might. How people respond to fame is very hard to tell. I would look for people who don't have any idea who Harvey is, who don't follow a lot of modern movies, and who buy into conspiracy theories.

Anthony said...


Its possible Weinstein resorted to physical assault a few times, but generally speaking his pattern seems to have been 'silver or lead'.

As you state, the silver is easy to spot but there is a lot of evidence of lead floating around so I'm not sure the silver is going to help Weinstein demonstrate consent.

I'm sure there are cases where the lead wasn't required ('Sure, I could use the silver!') and I'm sure there were cases where it was ('Well, if I can't turn down the silver without getting the lead, take the silver').

*Shrugs* But I'm not a lawyer, juries are unpredictable and the trials haven't even started so I'm not predicting how his trial(s?) might go.

tryanmax said...

I haven't read it yet, but let me thank you for not titling the article "Harvey Weinstein Might Get Off." Much appreciated.

tryanmax said...

Andrew, I think instead of "gauche" you mean "chic" or possibly "dernier cri." You could always try to make "fetch" happen. 😉

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, I can assure you there is no evidence of violence because if there had been violence, no one saved it and saved it in such a way that it would be admissible.

The prosecution is going to try to rely on "she told her friends about it," but that's not admissible.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, You're welcome. LOL!

I like fetch. We should go with fetch.

So what do you think? Would it work?

AndrewPrice said...

It sounds like Anthony Bordaine hung himself. Not a very nice guy.

AndrewPrice said...

Two quick thoughts on Bordaine.

1. There's tremendous praise for him by celebrities and it took me a moment to figure out why. His girlfriend has one of the premier #metoo cases against Weinstein and he was big on that. Hence, the praise is basically how good he was for #metoo plus the usual over-the-top praise you get from idiots:

"The world has lost the only man ever to deserve the title of Chef and our food will taste like ash now that he's gone blah blah blah."

2. I don't understand why everyone seems obsessed every time there is a suicide to write an article that says, "But I saw him smile/laugh/fart with gusto just last week!!" Right, because it's impossible to put on a facade. Morons.

Anthony said...

Charles Krauthammer has only a few weeks to live. I've followed his work for a long time. I can't claim I've agreed with everything he's ever said but he is often right and always interesting.

Unknown said...

Sounds like the best defense strategy he has, Andrew.
And quite a brilliant strategy at that!
Before reading this I would’ve said he had no chance at all.

Unknown said...

That is sad about Charles Krauthammer.

AndrewPrice said...

That is sad. I've always respected Charles Krauthammer. I wish him well.

AndrewPrice said...

Thank you, Allena. It's an aggressive strategy, but I think it would work.

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