If you feel like you have been seeing reports of sexual assault in the news more than often lately, there’s a reason for it: 2017 saw more claims against famous men than any year in the previous 50. And if the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that when scandals happen, they most frequently happen to men in politics or celebrities. From President Donald J. Trump himself to even the esteemed George H.W. Bush, these nine famous people suffered the wrath of past connections as they faced serious allegations throughout the year.
- Hollywood producer, Harvey Weinstein, is perhaps the most famous and widespread example on this list. All told, dozens of hollywood actresses and women have spoken out about him with their own claims. Their stories are corroborated by several influential men, including Quentin Tarantino, another producer.
- American entertainment executive and once-Director of Amazon Studios, Roy Price, resigned his position amidst significant controversy and sexual harassment claims in October. The media giant first suspended him just a week before his official resignation.
- One of the most recently accused individuals, actor Kevin Spacey, was accused of playing pornography for a man who was just 16 years old at the time it was shown. He was later accused by some 12 additional individuals, each of whom stated they were directly impacted by Spacey’s alleged lecherous behavior.
- American television journalist, Matt Lauer, who once hosted the Today Show, is among the ranks of the most targeted individuals this year. Since his initial accusation, Lauer has received hundreds of claims from past female employees, colleagues, and even friends who claim he behaved inappropriately towards them. Lauer’s wife continues to be his staunch supporter.
- Rep. John Conyers, stepped down from committee this year among accusations, too. It was later revealed that he used funding to pay off a former staffer who claims she was fired due to refusing to sleep with him. The case is ongoing.
- In October, an actress accused George H.W. Bush of sexual misconduct, suggesting he touched her sexually from his wheelchair during a photo op. Actress Heather Lind claims he also “told her a dirty joke” and touched her again a second time.
- Roy Moore, who as of today continues to claim the allegations against him are false, was accused of sexually interacting with six different women. In at least one of the cases the woman in question was just 14 years old at the time.
- Dustin Hoffman, an accomplished actor, stood accused of harassment by a woman who claims the man assaulted her at just 17. Although Hoffman stopped short of admitting to the event, he did later apologize for his actions.
- Donald J. Trump has been accused of sexual assault several times – many of which remain unproven. In 2017, Summer Zervos, a prior Celebrity Apprentice guest, accused Trump of sexually assaulting her in 2007. Her case is number 17 on the list of accusations rallied against the POTUS since the early 2000s.
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We aren’t saying that these claims are true or that they are false. However, it would seem that there is a danger of people potentially using claims like these to seek revenge or do something to damage an individual’s reputation. What do you think we can do to make sure this doesn’t turn into a witch hunt, but also make sure those who are harassed have a voice?