By Pam McClure
There was a lot going on at the Golden Globe Awards this year. #metoo and Time’s Up and black dresses and women supporting women and getting “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore” (quote from the movie Network). Hard to believe an awards show made me so emotional, and not for the winners of the various categories. I got caught up in the solidarity, the speeches (yes Oprah!), and the idea that perhaps it might be time for women to be heard. And who better to start this Women Trend than Hollywood actresses. The exposure is phenomenal. The platform that the actresses have can open up more and more exposure for all the #metoos. It is a very proactive way to get this going.
I love old movies and I follow a Facebook page that celebrates the actress Maureen O’Hara (Miracle on 34th Street, The Quiet Man, etc.). I enjoy it generally. From it I learned that Maureen O’Hara made statements many, many years ago about the “casting couch.” There was an article that is titled “Star’s Love Strike” and goes on:
“Irish film star Maureen O’Hara today charged Hollywood producers and directors with calling her ‘A cold potato without sex appeal’ because she refuses to let them make love to her, says the Mirror New York correspondent. ‘I am so upset with it that I am ready to quit Hollywood.’ Maureen says. ‘It’s got so bad I hate to come to work in the morning. I’m a helpless victim of a Hollywood whispering campaign. Because I don’t let the producer and director kiss me every morning or let them paw me they have spread word around town that I am not a woman—that I am a cold piece of marble statuary. I guess Hollywood won’t consider me as anything except a cold hunk of marble until I divorce my husband, give my baby away and get my name and photograph in all the newspapers. If that’s Hollywood’s idea of being a woman I’m ready to quit now.”
This article appeared on this website (and elsewhere) and the fans were so in support of her statement. After the Golden Globes, the woman who runs the Maureen O’Hara Magazine Website posted:
“I’m sure many of you watched the “Golden Globes” last night. Love to have your opinions on the whole essence of it all. You may recall a few weeks ago they published a couple of Maureen’s statements from early in her career about sexual harassment in the motion picture business in her era. How do you feel about every woman wearing black last night?… How do you feel about the whole thing?”
Well. I must say that I was surprised at some of the remarks made by women (these are cut and pasted verbatim from the page):
- “The idea of wearing black to protest sexual harassment was pointless since they weren’t exactly wearing something you would wear to a wake, many of the gowns were quite revealing. The type of attire that promotes sexual harassment behavior.”
- “Nope, too political. I want to be entertained and not have their far left liberal crap shoved down my throat.”
- “How many of these women in black actually agreed to the casting couch? It’s easy for them to be verbal now because the pig is out of the bag. They are all hypocrites. And don’t forget if Oprah says it, it MUST be true. Truth is relative.”
- “They are facing it now because the pig (cat) is out of the bag. Where were they when their “sisters” were being harassed, raped and drugged? Did they refuse to be another notch in the casting couch? They are hypocrites. It’s easy now to come out against sexual abuse because it’s “the thing” to do.”
- “Just an old gal here but my opinion. Men are being harassed right now. And women power is scary so men watch out. BUT WOMEN WHO DRESS SO SCANTALY, HALF DRESSED, NEED TO CHANGE THEIR WAYS AND HAVE MORE REsPECT FOR THEMSELVES. The least lil pat on their shoulder is a invitation for a lawsuit, discrimination suite. Men are not right, but neither are the women.”
- “Didn’t watch GG last night. While some have their hearts in the right place, I believe most are just show…no substance. Why would any woman of power remain quiet about abuse or harassment for so long.”
- “Wouldn’t watch that crap…. they are ALL culpable they accepted the system for years and now all of the sudden the fake indignation … Maureen stood up to it from the get go… they are all hypocrites!”
- “Didn’t watch it; didn’t want to support those people!”
- “Didn’t watch and those Hollywood elitist are nothing more then Hypocrites. They have done nothing for women except use them as pieces of meat. Half of Hollywood knew about this and did nothing now they think by wearing black it will make a difference it’s all a public relations stunt.”
- “While I understand their problem, I can not understand why they did not show some self respect. Why they let it go on, so others would also be taken advantage of. That makes them no better then the men doing it. The wearing of black, and bullying those that did not, well, that’s just bullies. The Golden Globe Awards was not the place for this.”
These are just some of the remarks from this thread. And it still amazes me how women still don’t support other women very well. We must support each other or we will never make the changes that need to be made. To make it so women have choices. Women cannot be threatened any more with their jobs and security by those in more powerful positions. NO ONE can be threatened.
What I see from the women in Hollywood is a very good way to get the word out. They are also fighting for those who are in even more difficult positions than they are in. Women are vulnerable especially in lower paying jobs or if they are not citizens or are single parents. Having no choice is crippling and the women in Hollywood may be the ones to make a difference to all women. I hope so.
Sexual misconduct was not acceptable and is still not acceptable anywhere and it will be stopped. There is power in numbers. Let’s support each other and not judge so much.
About the Author
Pam McClure is retired and loves to volunteer with local theaters as a director, actor, and general helper. She is very happy to be a part of V-Day Raleigh this year.