Since October 2017, the powerful push of the #MeToo movement has brought down and outed abusers from Hollywood, big business and the news media. Hundreds of victims have bravely taken a stand, risking their reputations and careers to speak out against sexual harassment in the workplace and beyond.Though major progress has been made, some of those brought to justice still feel like redemption is in order. This past week, a pitch for a #MeToo-centered talk show has surfaced, shining a spotlight back on those offenders, giving attention and power that had been rightfully stripped from them.
The proposed show, according to Page Six, would have Charlie Rose, one of many prominent men accused of sexual assault, sit down and interview those who have received similar allegations, attempting to get their side of the story. Former host of “Charlie Rose” on PBS and CBS “This Morning” contributor, Rose received accusations from 17 women in November 2017. These victims, ranging from 21 to 37 years old, came forward saying they were assaulted in the form of lewd phone calls, groping and indecent exposure from Rose.
Following the allegations, Rose has been suspended from PBS, retreating to his Long Island home from January to March, according to the Hollywood Reporter. During a Q-and-A on WNYC, journalist and former Vanity Fair editor Tina Brown said that she was approached to produce the proposed comeback show. She quickly turned it down, according to Page Six, saying “these guys are already planning their comebacks!”
Why should any of these men get screen time or the chance at a comeback? Do they expect viewers to forget the years and years of abuse behind them and suddenly feel sorry for their professional demise? The only people who would benefit are the ones who have perpetrated assaults that spawned #MeToo. It’s slated as a change in perspective on the recent movements in sexual assault, but those on the show would only want to mend their public image.
Fear of losing their careers or their position in an industry kept so many women from publicizing their experiences until late 2017. In cases like Harvey Weinstein, women were blackmailed into silence, forcing them to continue work with Weinstein. They suffered through years of torment, but only six months after falling, their abuser is planning a comeback.
Moments in the past year like the emotional closing of the Larry Nassar and Bill Cosby cases, or the massive women’s marches this past January show the forward movement of #MeToo. Watching those victims rise after so many years and finally get the justice they deserve made me feel hopeful for the female future and the future for those affected by sexual assault. In less than a year, so much has been done to create an open dialogue and bring the once touchy subject to the public eye. If men like Louis CK are supported by an outlet like this talk show and are given the opportunity to re-gain public support, the strides made this year may begin to unravel.
Even though the show is merely a pitch, the concept of sympathising with those who have inflicted so much damage and pain is beyond incomprehensible. The aim might be to try to get an unbiased view into how their lives have been negatively affected by accusations, but just giving these predators a platform is in itself a form of support. Anyone who has committed acts like Rose does not deserve a shot at atonement. It’s a movement about those affected by assault, and “comebacks” like this would give abusers tools to bring themselves back to positions of power.