In what can only be described as two lunatics enabling each other’s warped logic, fashion designer Donna Karan is defending movie executive Harvey Weinstein.
During a red carpet interview, she offered up some truly shocking ideas, claiming the victims of Weinstein’s sexual harassment and abuse were “asking for it” and stated: “You look at everything all over the world today and how women are dressing and what they are asking by just presenting themselves the way they do. What are they asking for? Trouble.”
This is really hard to believe when she is known for designing extremely provocative clothes and underwear. The fact that she also pretends to care about women’s rights and empowerment, yet defends a decades-long serial abuser, is laughable.
If Donna Karan was interested in dressing modestly, why didn’t she devote her career to making that type of clothing? The answer should be obvious. Her only interest is enriching herself financially, not helping women around the globe. To sell sexy clothes and then blame the buyers, telling them that they’re “asking for it,” is not just hypocritical, it’s sick.
After the Bill Cosby trial, one of the jurors said he doubted the accuser because she went to Cosby’s house wearing a shirt that had a bare midriff. This type of “Blame the Victim” thinking is so pervasive, even in the year 2017, that I seriously doubt it can be completely overcome, especially when celebrities and other influencers keep promoting it.
Let’s be clear, once and for all: No woman asks to be sexually harassed, sexually abused, and/or raped. It doesn’t matter what she’s wearing, if she agreed to a date, if she was drinking, if she’s big busted, if she was flirtatious…it just doesn’t matter! A woman’s body is not public property. She alone can decide who touches her.
While I am extremely disgusted by men who promote and condone this type of bad behavior, it’s even worse when a woman does it. Don’t tell me Donna Karan has never been in a situation that made her feel objectified and/or uncomfortable. Every woman has! She should be standing up for other women, that don’t have her money and status, that are truly vulnerable and have no voice. Instead, she sides with someone who deliberately abused his power, offering career advancement in exchange for intimate touching and sexual favors. (According to many sources, even famous actresses like Ashley Judd and Rose McGowan were caught up in his web of terror.)
As a society, we need to beat the drum that sexual harassment and abuse is not a joke, is not insignificant, and is not okay. This type of crime creates lifelong scars in victims that may never go away. Women deserve to feel safe in their own bodies just like men do. We shouldn’t have to agree to a Hollywood casting couch mentality, that judges women based on their looks alone. A job should be based on talent and marketable skills, not how well a woman performs between the sheets.
I applaud the victims for speaking out and Donna Karan should as well. Instead of judging other women, we need to embrace each other and be more loving and understanding because this issue threatens every single one of us.