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How I Lost Respect for My Acting Teacher

We discussed the sexual assault cases in Hollywood (i.e Kevin Spacey, Harvey Weinstein, etc.) and to say the least, it didn’t go as well as I had hoped.

I am studying at an acting studio in New York City, and I have my acting lessons twice a week with two different teachers: one of them being a middle-aged rugged man who has never really *done* anything in the industry. His teaching methods are very effective, and before every class we have this sort discussion of things happening or art we’ve seen. Let it be said that I had a very high admiration for this teacher, and if not admiration, respect for the knowledge he had of the method. 

Getting your education in this day and age in the arts is so interesting because of all the things happening in Hollywood, that are not all that positive. When the Harvey Weinstein accusations started to come into the light, and the confession of Anthony Rapp, of course it was the topic of discussion that Tuesday at 9 AM. Being a small class of 12, half of them being young women, it goes without saying that everyone had a passion-driven comment about the incident. 

“Everyone knew he was a fucking sleaze,” my teacher says in response. “None of us should of been surprised, he was a creep.” Which granted, was 100 percent true. 

“How stupid can some of these girls be?” — And that's where the record scratches and my jaw drops in horror. “I mean, if a man comes to the door in a robe, you don’t go in. Same as with Anthony Rapp, what kind of mother lets a 14-year-old go to a Kevin Spacey cast party?” 

Excuse me, what? Where do I even begin to pick apart this argument. 

  1. IT IS NEVER THE VICTIM'S FAULT. I don’t have to elaborate on this. 
  2. Are we forgetting this is Harvey Weinstein? A-List producer who’s catch phrase was “I will ruin you?” The person who ruined millions of successful, talented movie actor's/actresses' careers just because he felt like it? He was too powerful. 
  3. Acting as a career is competitive and difficult. Besides the fact that he took complete advantage of his power and position, along with feeding off of the performer’s vulnerability, it's a different world. Fourteen year olds go to cast parties when they’re a part of the cast, that’s just what happens. 

Extra point: a couple weeks later he said how Jennifer Lawrence was a spokesperson for women but then does movies where she’s exploited. 

Dear acting teacher, you, as an actor, should know how little decisions we have over the work we’re doing. There’s a director and producer in charge, and more importantly, someone out there willing to do everything you’re not. She needs work too. We NEED strong women to speak out and support each other, we NEED this kind of love and support from each other, and most importantly, we need men like YOU, acting teacher, to stop defending, even in the slightest the disgusting actions people like Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, and millions of other people have done. 

TIME'S UP. 

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