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ASPartOfMe
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02 Dec 2019, 5:43 pm

Report: Placido Domingo denies alleged casting power abuse

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Opera legend Placido Domingo was quoted by a leading Italian daily Monday as saying he did not abuse his power in casting, part of allegations against him in two reports by The Associated Press.

Domingo, 78, told Milanese daily Corriere della Sera that while he was general director in Washington and Los Angeles, casting decisions were made by “a team of four or five people.”

That meant “no one could take arbitrary decisions,” he said in an interview.

The AP reported last summer allegations by more than 20 women of sexual harassment or inappropriate behavior. Some claimed that rejecting his advances had hurt their careers.

Domingo, who gave a similar interview to a Spanish outlet last week, said that the reports “in which I was heavily accused of sexual molestation and abuse of power” hit like “lightning.”

The first AP report was published in August, just after a successful concert marking his 50th year at the outdoor Arena amphitheater in Verona. The second was published in September.

“In a moment, the news became global, enormous, and it didn’t let up. It is right, in that I am a public person, that I should be under the spotlight of public opinion. But very offensive things were said about me as a human being,’’ Domingo said. “In just a few hours, without (my) being asked, my engagements in Philadelphia and San Francisco were canceled. In a few days, half a century of career was swept away, as if with a breath.”

Asked by the Italian newspaper if his reaction to the first report — noting that the rules and standards had changed from the past — amounted to a “partial admission of guilt,” Domingo did not directly deny the allegations.

He responded: “I am convinced that every form of sexual molestation and offensive behavior toward anyone should be condemned in any place, in any historic period.”

While most of his U.S. dates were canceled in the wake of the reports and an investigation is under way at the Los Angeles Opera, European venues have supported Domingo. Every performance has been confirmed and some opera managers, notably at the Salzburg Festival and the Vienna State Opera, countered the reports by saying that the opera star had always behaved well in their venues.

He has performed to a supportive public and long applause in Salzburg, Szeged, Hungary, Moscow, Vienna, Hamburg and starting Monday in Valencia, Spain.


Placido told Corriere that he was now starting to resume his daily life, after a period during which he spent “many hours closed in the house,” taking solace in music and the support of his family.

“Now slowly-slowly, I am returning to my daily life, to my work, and among friends and colleagues, I feel serene,’’ he told Corriere.

Bolding mine
Interesting, we often told it is Americans who are supposed to be the neanderthals compared to the enlightened Europeans.


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04 Dec 2019, 10:40 pm

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Report: Placido Domingo denies alleged casting power abuse
Quote:
Opera legend Placido Domingo was quoted by a leading Italian daily Monday as saying he did not abuse his power in casting, part of allegations against him in two reports by The Associated Press.

Domingo, 78, told Milanese daily Corriere della Sera that while he was general director in Washington and Los Angeles, casting decisions were made by “a team of four or five people.”

That meant “no one could take arbitrary decisions,” he said in an interview.

The AP reported last summer allegations by more than 20 women of sexual harassment or inappropriate behavior. Some claimed that rejecting his advances had hurt their careers.

Domingo, who gave a similar interview to a Spanish outlet last week, said that the reports “in which I was heavily accused of sexual molestation and abuse of power” hit like “lightning.”

The first AP report was published in August, just after a successful concert marking his 50th year at the outdoor Arena amphitheater in Verona. The second was published in September.

“In a moment, the news became global, enormous, and it didn’t let up. It is right, in that I am a public person, that I should be under the spotlight of public opinion. But very offensive things were said about me as a human being,’’ Domingo said. “In just a few hours, without (my) being asked, my engagements in Philadelphia and San Francisco were canceled. In a few days, half a century of career was swept away, as if with a breath.”

Asked by the Italian newspaper if his reaction to the first report — noting that the rules and standards had changed from the past — amounted to a “partial admission of guilt,” Domingo did not directly deny the allegations.

He responded: “I am convinced that every form of sexual molestation and offensive behavior toward anyone should be condemned in any place, in any historic period.”

While most of his U.S. dates were canceled in the wake of the reports and an investigation is under way at the Los Angeles Opera, European venues have supported Domingo. Every performance has been confirmed and some opera managers, notably at the Salzburg Festival and the Vienna State Opera, countered the reports by saying that the opera star had always behaved well in their venues.

He has performed to a supportive public and long applause in Salzburg, Szeged, Hungary, Moscow, Vienna, Hamburg and starting Monday in Valencia, Spain.


Placido told Corriere that he was now starting to resume his daily life, after a period during which he spent “many hours closed in the house,” taking solace in music and the support of his family.

“Now slowly-slowly, I am returning to my daily life, to my work, and among friends and colleagues, I feel serene,’’ he told Corriere.

Bolding mine
Interesting, we often told it is Americans who are supposed to be the neanderthals compared to the enlightened Europeans.


Personally I've always found that to be a nonsense stereotype. (It certainly exists as a stereotype though, I won't disagree with you on that matter in the slightest.) Among things, US and European norms aren't the same just with Europe being 'ahead', there's a number of issues where progressive Americans have had a lead relative to their European analogs, but also some regions tend to be out-of-step progressive on some issues but out-of-step regressive on others. I don't imagine that some European troll using that stereotype as a cudgel against Americans is unaware that there's regressive reactionaries in his own backyard too, but perhaps they imagine that even their most backwards people are still ahead of those colonials.

Italy is often stereotyped as being pretty backwards on issues like consent, gender norms, machismo and other related concerns, unfortunately this is fitting with that stereotype.


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05 Dec 2019, 12:52 am

Women In France have been vocal in the cultural blindness of the #Metoo movement
https://www.france24.com/en/20191004-51 ... ia-consent

In French culture women expect attention from men as "normal" not harassment like in the Anglosphere



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09 Dec 2019, 12:00 pm

cyberdad wrote:
Women In France have been vocal in the cultural blindness of the #Metoo movement
https://www.france24.com/en/20191004-51 ... ia-consent

In French culture women expect attention from men as "normal" not harassment like in the Anglosphere


Where is the dividing line, in your opinion, between “attention” and “harassment?”



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10 Dec 2019, 1:09 am

Twilightprincess wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
Women In France have been vocal in the cultural blindness of the #Metoo movement
https://www.france24.com/en/20191004-51 ... ia-consent

In French culture women expect attention from men as "normal" not harassment like in the Anglosphere


Where is the dividing line, in your opinion, between “attention” and “harassment?”


What do you define by attention? In my experience almost all young women lack confidence to speak to an intellectual male even if it's just trying to hold a conversation. So they avoid eye contact or pretend they are busy.



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10 Dec 2019, 2:52 am

cyberdad wrote:
Twilightprincess wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
Women In France have been vocal in the cultural blindness of the #Metoo movement
https://www.france24.com/en/20191004-51 ... ia-consent

In French culture women expect attention from men as "normal" not harassment like in the Anglosphere


Where is the dividing line, in your opinion, between “attention” and “harassment?”


What do you define by attention? In my experience almost all young women lack confidence to speak to an intellectual male even if it's just trying to hold a conversation. So they avoid eye contact or pretend they are busy.


So you're saying most young woman are lacking in intellect compared to men.



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10 Dec 2019, 4:03 am

EzraS wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
So you're saying most young woman are lacking in intellect compared to men.


I didn't say that, I said they lack confidence



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10 Dec 2019, 4:37 am

cyberdad wrote:
EzraS wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
So you're saying most young woman are lacking in intellect compared to men.


I didn't say that, I said they lack confidence


It sounded like the lack of confidence was based on inferiority.



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10 Dec 2019, 5:04 am

Twilightprincess wrote:
Where is the dividing line, in your opinion, between “attention” and “harassment?”

I find it an interesting question.
For me, a guy who pushily offered help in solving my crosswords in Metro was an example of annoying unwanted attention but not harassment. I can imagine someone feeling harassed in such a situation.
The difference was, probably, I knew I had an option be nasty to him if he annoys me too much. I was in charge of my boundaries, even if uncomfortable about the whole setup. I believe the harassment starts when someone feels helpless about what's happening.


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18 Jan 2020, 4:34 am

Andrew Yang’s wife says doctor sexually assaulted her while she was pregnant

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The wife of Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang says she was sexually assaulted by an obstetrician while she was pregnant with the couple’s first child.

Evelyn Yang said in an interview televised Thursday by CNN that the assault happened in 2012 and that she was initially afraid to tell anyone. She and 31 other women are now suing the doctor and the hospital system, saying they conspired and enabled the crimes.

Yang said she was encouraged to speak out after seeing the positive reception she and her husband had been getting on the campaign trail by being open about their son's autism.

"Something about being on the trail and meeting people and seeing the difference that we've been making already has moved me to share my own story about it, about sexual assault," she told CNN.

Yang said she first began seeing Dr. Robert Hadden in New York in early 2012. As the months went on, Yang said, Hadden began asking her inappropriate questions about her sexual activity and spent more time conducting examinations.

When she was seven months pregnant, Yang said, she believed her appointment was done and she was getting ready to leave when the doctor told her abruptly that he thought she might need a cesarean section. She said Hadden pulled her to him and undressed her, then used his fingers to examine her internally.

“I knew it was wrong. I knew I was being assaulted,” she said.

But Yang said she “just kind of froze” and didn't react. “I remember trying to fix my eyes on a spot on the wall and just trying to avoid seeing his face as he was assaulting me, just waiting for it to be over," she told CNN.

After the doctor left the room, she left the practice and didn't return.

Hadden's lawyer has denied Yang's allegations in legal filings. His attorney declined a request to be interviewed by CNN.

Yang said she initially didn't tell anyone what had happened to her. She said she blamed herself, thinking she must have done something to “invite this kind of behavior.”

Months later, after the couple's son was born, Yang got a letter in the mail saying Hadden had left the practice. Curious, she looked him up online and saw that another woman had made a police report accusing him of assaulting her.

She said she realized then that she wasn't to blame for his actions.

"This was a serial predator, and he just picked me as his prey," she told CNN.

She said only then was she able to reveal the abuse to her husband.

In a statement Thursday, Andrew Yang said he was "proud” of his wife and no one deserves to be treated as she was.

“When victims of abuse come forward, they deserve our belief, support, and protection,” Yang said. "I hope that Evelyn's story gives strength to those who have suffered and sends a clear message that our institutions must do more to protect and respond to women."


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23 Jan 2020, 10:25 pm

Jessica Simpson reveals childhood sexual abuse

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US singer Jessica Simpson has revealed how being sexually assaulted as a child led to a reliance on drugs and alcohol.

The 39-year-old had top 10 UK chart hits in the noughties with I Wanna Love You Forever, These Boots Are Made For Walkin' and With You.

In an excerpt of her new memoir Open Book, published in People magazine, she admitted to self-medicating for years to deal with the "trauma".

The abuse she suffered began when she was six years old when she shared a bed with the daughter of a family friend.

"It would start with tickling my back and then go into things that were extremely uncomfortable," she wrote.

"I wanted to tell my parents. I was the victim but somehow I felt in the wrong."

Six years later she plucked up the courage to tell her parents during a car journey. Her mother reacted by slapping her father's arm and yelling: "I told you something was happening."

"Dad kept his eye on the road and said nothing," wrote Simpson.
"We never stayed at my parents' friends' house again but we also didn't talk about what I had said".

Simpson found fame as a teenage pop star in the late 1990s before starring in MTV reality series Newlyweds: Nick And Jessica alongside her former husband Nick Lachey.


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30 Jan 2020, 12:19 pm

'House of horrors': Glen Mills Schools facing more lawsuits alleging severe sex abuse, cover up

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GLEN MILLS, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Five new sexual assault and physical abuse lawsuits have been filed against Glen Mills Schools in Delaware County.

Attorneys of former students spoke about the new allegations in Center City on Wednesday.

The complaints allege rape, sexual assault, beatings and death threats from Glen Mills staff.

In one instance during 1987, one victim says he was forced against a wall and raped repeatedly, according to the lawsuit.

Another victim states in the lawsuit that during 2007-2008, one night a staffer forced his fingers in the victim's anus and threatened to beat him if he told anyone.

"Our allegations in these five lawsuits make clear that the Glen Mills Schools was a house of horrors that destroyed the lives of many of the students who were placed there by juvenile justice systems across the country," according to Jeffrey B. Solomon and Matthew L. Solomon , attorneys at Dion, Solomon & Shapiro, L.L.C. , and co-counsel for the five plaintiffs. "As we allege, the administrators and staff at Glen Mills built and encouraged a culture of violence and abuse that they covered up and concealed so as not to jeopardize the public funding that paid their salaries."

The lawsuits follow several other complaints filed late last year and earlier this month against Glen Mills from the same law firm.

All students were removed from the school last spring amid the allegations.

The school is cooperating with authorities.


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26 Feb 2020, 2:22 pm

Pop star Duffy says she was raped, drugged and held captive

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Aimee Duffy, the Welsh pop singer known as Duffy who retreated from the public eye following her hugely successful debut album Rockferry, has said she was drugged, held captive and raped by an unidentified person.

In a statement on her official Instagram account she said: “The truth is, and please trust me I am OK and safe now, I was raped and drugged and held captive over some days. Of course I survived. The recovery took time. There’s no light way to say it. But I can tell you in the last decade, the thousands and thousands of days I committed to wanting to feel the sunshine in my heart again, the sun does now shine.”

She does not detail when the attack happened, but said she came to the decision to reveal the attack after a journalist had contacted her: “He was kind and it felt so amazing to finally speak … In the following weeks I will be posting a spoken interview. If you have any questions I would like to answer them, in the spoken interview, if I can.”

Duffy, 35, adds: “You wonder why I did not choose to use my voice to express my pain? I did not want to show the world the sadness in my eyes. I asked myself, how can I sing from the heart if it is broken? And slowly it unbroke.” She pleaded for support, and for no intrusion into her family life.

With a vintage pop sound that matched contemporaries like Amy Winehouse and Adele, Duffy’s 2008 debut album Rockferry was sensationally successful. Powered by the chart-topping single Mercy and the ballad Warwick Avenue which peaked at No 3, it became the UK’s biggest selling album that year, and won her three Brit awards. It eventually sold over 9m copies worldwide, and was a hit in the US, reaching the top five and winning a Grammy.

She released a less successful follow-up, Endlessly, in 2010. She has only released one song since then, Whole Lot of Love, which featured on the soundtrack to 2015 Tom Hardy gangster film Legend. She appeared in the film as nightclub singer Timi Yuro.

In 2013, she told Esquire magazine: “I took a step back. I thought: I’m going to slow all this right down … It all got so complex, such responsibility. I was serenading people to sleep, not running Nasa. Suddenly I was a product, an enterprise, a businesswoman. But mostly I wanted to be human.”

In 2014, her producer Bernard Butler said: “She went off the rails and it all went pear-shaped for her … But I always had quite a lot of sympathy for her, because she was young, from this tiny village in Wales, and she was just hurled into the fire.”

In a 2011 interview with Marie Claire she noted how her musical heroes were victims of tragedy. “Where I want to be and where I think I’ll be [in 20 years] are very different things. The way history would have it is that I would end up in some form of tragic event. The people that I’ve loved – Dusty, Marvin, Edith Piaf – they didn’t always have happy stories. That’s the way history would have it … I take every day as it comes. You’re at the mercy of life.”


Duffy praised for opening up about long-term impact of rape
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The singer Duffy has been praised for shedding light on the long-lasting impact of sexual trauma after revealing that she was held captive for several days and raped.

Helplines for victims of sexual violence are preparing for a rise in calls after the singer revealed that she retreated from the public eye for a decade to deal with her trauma, days after the conviction of sexual predator Harvey Weinstein.

The singer was praised by campaigners and trauma experts for opening up about her experience, saying her story could inspire other victims of sexual abuse to come forward and inform potential jury members about the impact of trauma.

“Rape is still a very under-discussed, misunderstood and under-reported crime, so when someone like Duffy speaks out in such a powerful way it can make other survivors feel a little bit less alone and less ashamed – which is a very common emotion, now matter how unfounded,“ said Katie Russell, from Rape Crisis.

“Duffy is speaking now after a long time, which is really common in our experience. It’s important to remember that the vast majority of people don’t report rape, and those that do may take some time – and anyone who ends up on a jury should remember that it is a very common impact of trauma.”

Rape charges, prosecutions and convictions in England and Wales have fallen to their lowest levels in more than a decade, while police referrals have also fallen. A major government review of the treatment of rape in the criminal justice system was launched last year, following the collapse in prosecutions and fears that the CPS was dropping weaker cases.

“This is a moment where we have to hear these voices and take action; we need to look at exactly is going on with rape in this country,” said Baird.

“We have seen an increase in the number of women reporting rape to police in recent years, but the truth is that the criminal justice system is not providing them with justice. The government’s end-to-end review of the system must reveal where the system is failing, and must not shy away from asking difficult questions.”

Duffy’s decision to tell her story in her own time and using her own channels should also provoke a discussion about alternative justice for victims of sexual crimes, said Nina Burrows, a specialist in the psychology of sexual assault.

“Most rape victims choose not to report, and the criminal justice system is increasingly not the place to find redress, so we need to be more curious about what justice for victims could look like,” she said.

“Duffy’s statement holds a mirror up. Some people react by telling horrible jokes, others want the intrigue and details, but maybe some of us could get more curious about what life is really like after an experience like that. I think people are already finding their own justice. We need to find out how they are doing it.”


I really loved the Rockferry album when it came out especially the title song and "Warwick Ave" and of course "Mercy" which has a whole different meaning now. Sometimes I have wondered what happened with her. Out of that group of female singers songwriters that came out of the UK in the late '00s of course Amy Winehouse died, Adele became a megastar, Florence and the Machine have done very well and Lily Allen, Joss Stone and Kate Nash are still around, but Duffy who was as big as any of them back in '08 just seemed to fall off off the face of the earth.

I am sorry this happened to her and am glad she is doing better.


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03 Mar 2020, 10:21 am

MSNBC's Chris Matthews resigns from 'Hardball,' apologizes for inappropriate comments

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Chris Matthews is retiring immediately from his MSNBC show following accusations of making inappropriate comments, including several about women.

"I’m retiring," the veteran host said at the start of his show Monday. "This is the last ‘Hardball’ at MSNBC and obviously this isn’t for lack of interest in politics. As you can tell, I’ve loved every minute of my 20 years as host of ‘Hardball.’"

Matthews, 74, announced he would exit immediately, leaving a surprised colleague, NBC correspondent Steve Kornacki, to finish Monday's broadcast. Matthews, who was absent from Saturday's coverage of the South Carolina Democratic primary, said he and MSNBC decided to mutually part ways. He also apologized for past comments about women's appearances.

"The younger generations out there are ready to take the reins," said Matthews. "We’ve seen them in politics, in the media, and fighting for the causes. They’re improving the workplace. We’re talking here about better standards than we grew up with. Fair standards. A lot of it has to do with how we talk to each other. Compliments on a woman’s appearance that some men, including me, might have once incorrectly thought were OK, were never OK. Not then and certainly not today. And for making such comments in the past, I’m sorry."

Matthews remained proud of the work he’s done on the show, he said.

"Long before I went on television, I worked for years in politics, was a newspaper columnist and author," he continued. "I’m working on another book. I’ll continue to write and talk about politics and cheer on my producers and crew here in Washington and New York and my MSNBC colleagues. They will continue to produce great journalism in the years ahead."

Over the years, the political history buff, who underwent prostate surgery last year, has said he’s a liberal, but is more conservative than people think. What was never in doubt is his gift for gab, which occasionally tripped him up on “Hardball” when he talked so much his guests couldn’t get a word in edgewise.

On Friday, new allegations surfaced when journalist Laura Bassett revealed in a column for GQ that Matthews, made her "uncomfortable" ahead of her 2016 appearance on "Hardball" after he "inappropriately flirted with me in the makeup room."

"Right before I had to go on his show and talk about sexual-assault allegations against Donald Trump, Matthews looked over at me in the makeup chair next to him and said, 'Why haven’t I fallen in love with you yet?'" wrote Bassett, a freelance journalist covering politics, gender, and culture.

She continued: "When I laughed nervously and said nothing, he followed up to the makeup artist. 'Keep putting makeup on her, I’ll fall in love with her.'"

Bassett recalled another incident where Matthews complimented her red dress and asked if she was going out following their segment.

"I said I didn’t know," added Bassett. "And he said—again to the makeup artist—'Make sure you wipe this off her face after the show. We don’t make her up so some guy at a bar can look at her like this.'"

In 1999, Matthews was reprimanded for making inappropriate jokes and comments about a female employee. The incident, made when "Hardball with Chris Matthews" was airing on CNBC, resulted in the woman getting separation-related compensation from the network, an MSNBC spokesperson told USA TODAY in 2017.

In 2016, Matthews issued an apology after asking where his "Bill Cosby pill" was before an interview with then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during her campaign. He said the comment was made in "poor taste."

And just last month, he apologized for comparing Bernie Sanders' win in the Nevada caucuses to Nazi Germany's defeat of France in World War II, which caused an uproar. On Friday’s show, he confused the identities of South Carolina Senate candidate Jaime Harrison and Sen. Tim Scott, both black men


Behind the scenes at Chris Matthews' final 'Hardball' taping: Tears, family and raw emotions
Quote:
As Chris Matthews announced his immediate retirement from MSNBC's "Hardball" Monday over accusations of making inappropriate comments, an emotional scene took place behind the cameras where Matthews' family and crew watched him say his goodbyes.

"I’m retiring," the veteran host told viewers at the top of his show. "This is the last ‘Hardball’ at MSNBC and obviously this isn’t for lack of interest in politics. As you can tell, I’ve loved every minute of my 20 years as host of ‘Hardball.’"

Before the taping began, Matthews ducked into the studio without talking to any of the people waiting to appear on his show. As upcoming guests, including Democratic strategist Joe Trippi gathered with makeup artist Roxanne Williams, Associated Press White House reporter Jonathan Lemire urged everyone assembled to watch Matthews’ opening.

Matthews, 74, announced he would exit the show immediately, leaving a surprised colleague, NBC correspondent Steve Kornacki, to finish the broadcast. Matthews, who was absent from Saturday's coverage of the South Carolina Democratic primary, said he and MSNBC decided to mutually part ways. He also apologized for past comments about women's appearances.

According to the Associated Press, Matthews had been talking to MSNBC management about retiring after the election, but he didn’t survive until Super Tuesday. The AP says crew members backstage at “Hardball” on Monday learned of their boss’ exit about an hour and a half before Matthews’ statement.

After the show, reactions poured in online as veteran journalists responded to the news.

Andrea Mitchell, NBC News' chief foreign affairs correspondent, tweeted a list of Matthews' accolades early Tuesday morning, adding "we will miss him as a colleague."

Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker tweeted in Matthews' defense, promising an "angry column" coming soon: "Chris Matthews is a friend of mine. He and I have flirted unabashedly for 20 years. This is an atrocious end to a noble, happy-warrior career. I will continue to be his friend."

Gretchen Carlson responded to Parker: "respect you but we're (sic) you with him in every case of interactions with other women?

MSNBC "Deadline: White House" host Nicolle Wallace shared a video of her "friend and colleague" Matthews' announcement, calling it a "heart felt sign off and nod to his viewers who are many.

"His love of politics and politicians and enthusiasm for every story he covers is in a league of its own," she added.

NBC News business correspondent and MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle called him a "real person who truly loves & knows politics. "I appreciate all that he has taught me about them & I will miss watching him daily."


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04 Mar 2020, 5:15 pm

Timothy Hutton Accused of Raping a 14-Year-Old Girl When He Was in His 20s — Report

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Oscar-winning actor Timothy Hutton is facing accusations from a woman that he raped her when she was 14 years old in 1983. According to the alleged victim, Sera Johnston, as detailed in a BuzzFeed News report published Monday afternoon, Hutton assaulted her during the making of the film “Iceman.” Johnston said that she and two friends were invited to Hutton’s hotel room, where the alleged assault occurred. Johnston claims she was raped by Hutton, then in his 20s, and one of his friends. The incident allegedly occurred in Vancouver, where Johnston filed a criminal report with the police last year.

Hutton and his team — who have yet to respond to IndieWire’s request for comment — deny the accusations in the report. In the BuzzFeed story, a report from Hutton’s lawyers says the actor “will not spend one more minute dignifying these allegations as they are patently false and designed only to extort money from him.” The statement also takes issue with Johnston’s narrative, which “provided salacious, heinous, and graphic details of this made-up sexual encounter that supposedly occurred 36 years ago. Although these were disgusting details any smut fiction writer could conjure up,” the attorney argues there is no evidence to support the claims, labeling Johnston’s story as “fabricated,” “patently false, scurrilous, and defamatory statements.”

In the wake of the report, Hutton has reportedly hired two law firms and three spokespeople to represent him, and has provided BuzzFeed with detailed information in the form of a 91-page letter intended to discredit Johnston.

“As proof, they cite the fact that she didn’t raise the issue until 2017, 34 years after she claims the incident took place — and when she did raise it, she hired a lawyer to pursue a financial settlement rather than going to the police,” said the story penned by Adam B. Vary and Kate Arthur, both of whom are now employed by Variety full time — the legal vetting of such a piece can take an extremely long amount of time, even until its authors are employed elsewhere. “They point to the fact that she has no eyewitness to the alleged assault itself. Most damning of all, they said, is the fact that last March, an ex-boyfriend of hers reached out to the man she said assaulted her alongside Hutton and offered to personally broker some sort of deal.”

Back in 2017, Hutton did agree to a payout of $135,000, according to Johnston, whose lawyer suggested she go after him for $1.5 million.

The BuzzFeed story features testimony from several witnesses who corroborated her story. That includes Johnston’s mother, once a set decorator, who regrets not having gone to the police in 1983.

Timothy Hutton was most recently seen in “The Glorias” at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. IndieWire has reached out to director Julie Taymor, and the film’s distributor, Roadside Attractions, for comment.

Update
Timothy Hutton’s representatives have shared the following statement from him with IndieWire on his behalf: “For the past two-and-a-half years, I have been the target of multiple extortion attempts by a woman named Sera Dale Johnston to extract millions of dollars from me. She threatened that if I did not meet her demands, she would go to the press with a false allegation that I sexually assaulted her 37 years ago in Canada. I never assaulted Ms. Johnston,” he said.

“Today, BuzzFeed chose to publish Ms. Johnston’s false story. BuzzFeed knew the truth because they were provided with documented evidence. What’s really going on here is that Ms. Johnston’s extortion attempts failed. She then decided to follow through on her threat to go to the press with her false story. When I became aware of this, I went to the FBI, signed a sworn statement, and filed a criminal complaint against Ms. Johnston for extortion. I will not stop fighting to expose this story for what it is – a failed extortion attempt based on something that never happened.”

Hutton’s defamation counsel added that they will be sending BuzzFeed a legal retraction demand. “If BuzzFeed wrongfully refuses to retract the article, Tim is prepared to take any and all necessary steps, including the filing of a defamation lawsuit, to clear his name and to hold BuzzFeed and Ms. Johnston accountable for their reckless and self-serving efforts to destroy Tim’s reputation and career,” Tom Clare, Hutton’s counsel, said.


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06 Mar 2020, 8:49 pm

Woody Allen Memoir Dropped by Hachette After Staff Walkout

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Hachette Book Group will no longer publish Woody Allen's memoir, Apropos of Nothing.

"Hachette Book Group has decided that it will not publish Woody Allen’s memoir Apropos of Nothing, originally scheduled for sale in April 2020, and will return all rights to the author," the publishing company said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

"The decision to cancel Mr. Allen’s book was a difficult one. At HBG we take our relationships with authors very seriously, and do not cancel books lightly. We have published and will continue to publish many challenging books. As publishers, we make sure every day in our work that different voices and conflicting points of views can be heard. Also, as a company, we are committed to offering a stimulating, supportive and open work environment for all our staff. Over the past few days, HBG leadership had extensive conversations with our staff and others. After listening, we came to the conclusion that moving forward with publication would not be feasible for HBG."

A source tells THR that following the announcement, HBG staff were surprised yet also relieved, clapping and cheering over the news.

Thursday's walkout included employees from imprints Little, Brown and Company, which released Ronan Farrow's Catch and Kill, and Grand Central Publishing, which announced Monday that it would be releasing Allen's memoir April 7. Following the announcement, Farrow stated he would be ending his relationship with Hachette. Farrow, Allen's son, has repeatedly stated he believes his sister Dylan Farrow's allegations that the filmmaker sexually abused her as a child.

Dylan tweeted about HBG's decision to no longer publish Allen's memoir, writing "I'm in awe and so very grateful." Ronan also shared on social media that he was "grateful to all the Hachette employees who spoke up and to the company for listening."

"To each and every individual who, at great professional risk to themselves, stood in solidarity with my brother, myself, and all victims of sexual abuse yesterday: words will never describe the debt of gratitude I owe to you," she added. "For someone who has felt alone in my story for so long, yesterday was a profound reminder of what a difference can be made when people stand and unite together for what's right. Thank you so very much."

Ronan had tweeted Tuesday that he was "disappointed to learn through press reports" of Hachette's decision to publish the book "after other major publishers refused to do so." He continued that HBG "concealed the decision from me and its own employees while we were working on Catch and Kill — a book about how powerful men, including Woody Allen, avoid accountability for sexual abuse." Later in the statement, he said he told the publisher he couldn't work with the company "in good conscience" any longer.

Farrow criticized the publishing company for not fact-checking the book. "My sister Dylan has never been contacted to respond to any denial or mischaracterization of the abuse she suffered at the hands of Woody Allen — a credible allegation, maintained for almost three decades, backed up by contemporaneous accounts and evidence," he wrote. "It's wildly unprofessional in multiple obvious directions for Hachette to behave this way. But it also shows a lack of ethics and compassion for victims of sexual abuse, regardless of any personal connection or breach of trust here."

Dylan Farrow also issued a statement Tuesday on Twitter, writing that Hachette's decision is "deeply upsetting to me personally and an utter betrayal of my brother." She also pointed to a discrepancy between the lack of fact-checking of Allen's memoir and the "endless scrutiny" and "extensive fact-checking" hers has undergone before ever being published. "Hachette's complicity in this should be called out for what it is and they should have to answer for it," she added.

In Catch and Kill, Farrow details his initial reluctance to fully engage with or speak out publicly regarding his sister's longtime allegations about their father. The reporter broke his silence in a 2016 guest column in THR, writing, "I believe my sister. This was always true as a brother who trusted her, and, even at 5 years old, was troubled by our father's strange behavior around her."


Stephen King condemns Hachette Book Group for dropping Woody Allen memoir: 'Muzzling' people worries me
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Author Stephen King condemned Hachette Book Group for dropping the Woody Allen memoir amid amounting pressure, saying the decision makes him feel "very uneasy."

King took to Twitter on Friday evening to express his concern about the precedent the incident sets.

"The Hachette decision to drop the Woody Allen book makes me very uneasy. It's not him; I don't give a damn about Mr. Allen. It's who gets muzzled next that worries me," King tweeted.

He added, "Once you start, the next one is always easier”


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Professionally Identified and joined WP August 26, 2013
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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman