News & Politics

Harvey Weinstein Sentenced to 23 Years for Third-Degree Rape and Sexual Assault

Harvey Weinstein arrives at a Manhattan courthouse as jury deliberations continue in his rape trial, Monday, Feb. 24, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Movie producer Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison for third-degree rape and sexual assault. He could have received 29 years for the crimes for which he was convicted.

Weinstein was acquitted of the most serious charge — predatory sexual assault — which could have meant life in prison. As it is, the 67-year-old will now likely die in prison.

NRO:

The producer, who has been accused of using his position to assault dozens of actresses but only dealt with two accusers in this trial, expressed bewilderment regarding his sentence.

“I had wonderful times with these people,” Weinstein told the court regarding his accusers. “I’m just genuinely confused. Men are confused about this issue.”

After his conviction in February, Weinstein said “I’m innocent. I’m innocent. I’m innocent. How could this happen in America?”

Weinstein’s behavior had nothing to do with sexual harassment. It wasn’t some boss putting his hand on his secretary’s knee or making a dirty joke in front of a woman. Harvey Weinstein is a rapist. And despite not being convicted on the predatory sexual assault, he is a serial rapist who has been forcibly taking women for years.

They kept their mouths shut largely because they knew that accusing the powerful producer would mean the end of their careers. Women shouldn’t have to make that choice. Assault is assault. Rape is rape. Whether it’s Harvey Weinstein or any other powerful man, no woman should have to endure what these women did — certainly not for the survival of their careers.

There is yet to be a reckoning for the media in this case who buried allegations against Weinstein.

Journalist Ronan Farrow exposed the accusations against Weinstein in a 2017 article in the New Yorker. Farrow later said his former network, NBC, had attempted to quash his Weinstein reporting because the producer had threatened to reveal sexual assault allegations against former Today Show host Matt Lauer.

Farrow also revealed that Hillary Clinton publicist Nick Merrill had told Farrow the Weinstein story “was a concern for us.” The producer was a regular Clinton donor.

It was no secret in the media, it was no secret in Hollywood. That Weinstein was able to avoid justice for so long is a travesty.

The #MeToo movement was a good idea hijacked by those who saw the opportunity to gain power over their enemies — men. Certainly, there were many feminists — most prominently, Camille Paglia — who attacked the movement as being “counterproductive.” But as the definition of “sexual assault” and “sexual harassment” expanded to silly proportions, ordinary women began to fight back, defending their men from feminist charges that they were “animals.” This, more than anything, appeared to bring the movement back to some semblance of reality.

Harvey Weinstein is going to jail. And women everywhere are safer for it.