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Mira Sorvino said that 'naming and shaming' doesn't do enough for #MeToo and she's right

Sorvino was one of the first women to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct.

Mira Sorvino Portrait Session Source: AP/PA Images

DURING THE HEIGHT of the #MeToo movement in 2017, actress Mira Sorvino’s long-held suspicion that she had been blacklisted in Hollywood was eventually vindicated by director Peter Jackson. 

Jackson recalled being told to avoid Mira Sorvino “at all costs” by Miramax, and realised with hindsight that the Weinstein brothers were ensuring that the actress did not get a major role in the Lord of the Rings series. Sorvino responded to Peter Jackson’s statement by saying, “Thank you Peter Jackson for being honest. I’m just heartsick.” 

Sorvino had been one of the first women to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment to The New Yorker in October 2017. She spoke about a series of incidents that occurred at the Toronto Film Festival in 1995, and said that after she had rejected Weinstein’s advancements, she felt “iced out” of acting. 

Mira had kept this story to herself for 22 years before sharing her #MeToo story with the world last autumn. A year on, she told the Associated Press that simply “naming and shaming” perpetrators isn’t enough to eradicate sexual misconduct in any sphere. 

Mira Sorvino Portrait Session Source: AP/PA Images

Mira Sorvino believes that consent classes are imperative to tackling the issue and she’s probably right. After all, how many of the people who complained about the introduction of consent classes to Irish colleges were also asking “How are we even supposed to know the difference between flirting and sexual harassment?”

Many of the people who were slating consent classes are the very same people who are complaining that they’re afraid to talk to women in case they’re reported for sexual harassment. Perhaps these people didn’t know as much about consent as they initially believed. 

Sorvino said that the next step for #MeToo is to focus on teaching young people about consent.

So we don’t raise boys – because it’s mostly boys who do this, some girls, but mostly boys – who turn into men who commit these heinous crimes. 

The 51-year-old pointed out that pop culture in the 20th century normalised a lot of the reprehensible behaviour we see today.

That was sort of taught to us by like ’80s movies culture like ‘Sixteen Candles’ or ‘Porky’s’ or ‘Animal House’, which made it OK to commit date rape and it was the woman’s fault because she was drunk rather than, “That’s date rape.” How could you possibly take advantage of somebody who can’t even speak? 
That’s not cool. That’s not fun. But that’s what my generation of guys were brought up on. I mean, I was brought up watching those movies, so we’ve got to change the culture. It can’t just be punishment and naming and shaming, it’s got to be prevention because that’s what we really want. We want no one victimized. 

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Kelly Earley

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