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Woody Allen's Cast And Crew Are Guilty Too - And So Are You

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WOODY ALLEN CANNES
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Actress Blake Lively, director Woody Allen, actress Kristen Stewart and actor Jesse Eisenberg attend the 'Cafe Society' premiere during the 69th annual Cannes Film Festival.

It is the job of the media to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.

Ronan Farrow (reporter, lawyer and activist) reminds us all of this very important tenet of journalism when he penned the provocative piece entitled, "My Father, Woody Allen, and the Danger of Questions Unasked" for the Hollywood Reporter.

Farrow is dismayed that despite the fact that his sister, Dylan Farrow, has made damning accusations against their father, Woody Allen has not only evaded justice, but continues to enjoy a successful Hollywood career.

Sexual assault has always been an uncomfortable topic to discuss. Pedophilia and incest, even more so.

And though it may make all of us uncomfortable, for the sake of victims who suffer regardless of whether we choose to talk about the subject matter, we must.

The fact that Hollywood stars such as Blake Lively, Kristen Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg continue to work with Woody Allen speaks volumes about their character.

No role, no amount of money should be enough to tempt someone to work with a director who has been accused by his own children of molesting his young daughter, Dylan, when she was just seven years old.

If Hollywood actors and producers turned their backs on the likes of Woody Allen, Roman Polanski, Bill Cosby and Terry Richardson, it would send a strong message of support to victims. And for many victims who know that the prospect of a criminal conviction is faint at best, seeing their alleged abuser publicly shamed or ostracized is the only morsel of justice they will ever be served.

The fact that most journalists carefully steer clear of asking Allen the tough questions is appalling, as Ronan Farrow correctly points out.

But I am even more dismayed by the starlets and purported feminists who willingly work with Allen. These actresses are essentially telling a seven year old child that they do not believe her and that her story does not matter. They are flipping the bird to all victims of sexual abuse through their acquiescence.

I will never be asked to star in a Woody Allen directed film. But I can still make a point of choosing not to support Allen by boycotting his movies (which I have been doing for years now). I can still show support for that little seven-year-old girl and others like her.

After learning of Roman Polanski's crimes against a 13-year-old girl and how he evaded justice, I made a point to never see a Polanski film. Even when Polanski's celebrated film "The Pianist" was nominated for multiple Oscars, I continued to avoid it and was disheartened to see Hollywood support Polanski and shower him with golden statuettes.

True, there may not be enough evidence to see Woody Allen locked up in a tiny cell. And I am not advocating the imprisonment of anyone without due process or a finding of guilt beyond all reasonable doubt.

However, there is a big difference between a court of law and the court of public opinion.

I do not need to be 100 per cent certain of Woody Allen's guilt to feel comfortable with my decision to boycott his films. I believe Dylan Farrow and Ronan Farrow and Mia Farrow.

I certainly do not believe the denials of a man who went on to have an unhealthy relationship and affair with the much younger Soon-Yi Previn (essentially, his step-daughter). Any man who thinks it is OK to engage in a sexual relationship with someone he once parented clearly has no grasp on acceptable social mores.

Woody Allen's own words regarding this troubling union are damning enough.

"I'm 35 years older, and somehow...the dynamic worked," explains Allen during a 2015 interview with NPR. "I was paternal. She responded to someone who was paternal."

Whenever a Woody Allen film hits the big screen, I will protest the film by withholding my money and support. Instead, I will donate the money I would have spent on a movie ticket to a charity that supports victims of sexual assault. I challenge you to do the same.

We may not have the power to change Hollywood overnight, but we can still cast a small vote in favour of decency and dignity and grace.

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