Well, the verdict is in and it’s definitely not a good one for media mogul, Harvey Weinstein.
The grand jury of which his lawyer refused to allow him to testify, indicted Weinstein on two sets of rape charges and a sex crime charge. With charges of Rape in the First and Third Degrees, and Criminal Sexual Act in the First Degree, it can only serve as proof that women are taking a stand against sexual abuse, fighting for their rights to live without such abuses, and winning the fight through the court system.
Repercussions to sexual misconduct
Weinstein is potentially facing 25 years in prison if found guilty. Not only is he on the path of losing his freedom, but he is also facing financial ruin and the complete tarnish of a reputation that took years to build.
To sacrifice all of this just to accommodate a sexual weakness that involved the mistreatment of his power and the women who trusted him to guide their careers is beyond believable. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. expressed his relief of the indictment while sharing his desire to keep the case in the courtroom, not the press.
“This indictment brings the defendant another step closer to accountability for the crimes of violence with which he is now charged,” Vance stated when asked about his opinion on the decision of the grand jury.
The decision of the grand jury made a major statement to men and society, at large: if you sexually abuse women, you will lose everything. This is indeed something that should be a common understanding; however, it’s only really surfacing as a virtual promise since the enactment of the #MeToo movement.
Use it or lose it
Weinstein’s attorney, Ben Brafman, has utilized the media to promote both this case and his defense of his client. Brafman has laid claim to the innocence of his client by attempting to convince the press that Weinstein had consensual sex, not rape, with one of the survivors.
Not understanding that even if Weinstein had a relationship with the survivor at the time of the sexual encounter, he could still be guilty of rape if he forced himself sexually, without her consent.
Believing that the media attention would assist in his winning over the grand jury, Brafman continued to argue his case in front of any camera that was placed in his path. This is the media that Vance is attempting to avoid in all future dealings.