Big Bang Theory’s Mayim Bialik’s ‘mean-spirited’ take on sexual assault gets attacked on Twitter
An op-ed written by The Big Bang Theory star, Mayim Bialik, has been attracting criticism for the tone she takes against victims of sexual assault.Updated: Oct 15, 2017 14:11 IST
An op-ed written by The Big Bang Theory star, Mayim Bialik, has been attracting criticism for the tone she takes against victims of sexual assault. Bialik, who plays Amy in the hit comedy series, wrote the piece for The New York Times on Saturday in response to the recent revelations against Hollywood studio boss, Harvey Weinstein.
One paragraph in particular is being singled out by critics, who say that Bialik strikes a tone that comes dangerously close to victim-shaming.
She wrote that she has managed to avoid the horrific experiences over 40 women have detailed mostly because of her looks. She says that she chooses to “dress conservatively” and does not “act flirtatiously with men as a policy.”
“I am entirely aware that these types of choices might feel oppressive to many young feminists. Women should be able to wear whatever they want. They should be able to flirt however they want with whomever they want. Why are we the ones who have to police our behaviour?” she wrote. “In a perfect world, women should be free to act however they want. But our world isn’t perfect. Nothing—absolutely nothing—excuses men for assaulting or abusing women. But we can’t be naïve about the culture we live in.”
“I plan to continue to work hard to encourage young women to cultivate the parts of themselves that may not garner them money and fame,” she wrote. “If you are beautiful and sexy, terrific. But having others celebrate your physical beauty is not the way to lead a meaningful life. And if—like me—you’re not a perfect 10, know that there are people out there who will find you stunning, irresistible and worthy of attention, respect and love. The best part is you don’t have to go to a hotel room or a casting couch to find them.”
Several people took to Twitter to voice their disapproval of Bialik’s piece:
Mayim Bialik missed the perfect opportunity to call out men in Hollywood. Instead she blames women. https://t.co/kBJPGXhwI1— Ines Helene (@inihelene) October 14, 2017
"I have decided that my sexual self is best reserved for private situations with those I am most intimate with. I dress modestly." This is disgusting. @missmayim is placing blame on victims and forgetting that rape and assault are about power, not about desire. https://t.co/gVFoct2QyQ— wikipedia brown (@eveewing) October 14, 2017
Sad it still needs to be said: people who look, dress all kinds of ways are also sexually assaulted or harassed. https://t.co/KR074UPKS6— Irin Carmon (@irin) October 14, 2017
I don't even know where to start with how misguided and at times, mean-spirited this article is https://t.co/FuK43khNwd— Alana Massey-cre (@AlanaMassey) October 14, 2017
Really want to again congratulate @missmayim on being too SMART to be PRETTY ENOUGH to get raped. What a great take to give to the world.— Amanda Duarte (@duarteamanda) October 14, 2017
Yes Mayim there IS a dangerous culture that is objectifying women and putting them at risk, and YOU are contributing to that culture— Ijeoma Oluo (@IjeomaOluo) October 14, 2017
Do you know how many times a week dudes show up here to tell me how I'm to fat or ugly to be raped? Do you know how many times I have been?— Ijeoma Oluo (@IjeomaOluo) October 14, 2017
.@missmayim I have to say I was dressed non provocatively at 12 walking home from school when men masturbated at me. It's not the clothes.— Patricia Arquette (@PattyArquette) October 14, 2017
Bialik acknowledged the backlash and wrote on Twitter that her words were taken out of context and that she would be appearing in a Facebook live on Monday when she would discuss it further.
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First Published: Oct 15, 2017 14:10 IST