Sony Has Let Down All Its Female Artists - It's Time To Demand Of The Entertainment Industry What We've Been Demanding of the NFL
I've not been Kesha's most devout musical fan, so admittedly, I didn't realize what she has been going through and pursuing since 2014, until her request for an injunction was denied on Friday, and then I became one of her biggest supporters, because it's not just about her. It's about every woman in the industry who has been through what she has been through and every woman who will go through it. The denial of this injunction basically allows plenty of men to let out a sigh of relief because they can use the "she's like a little sister" excuse to get away with inappropriate behaviour. They can go back to touching your leg and grabbing your waist while trying to reach for lower, and chalk it up to "brotherly love." Labels and other companies can go back to pretending this issue doesn't exist or isn't a big deal, and they don't have to worry about losing out on their "investments."
It's absolutely disgusting. The Manhattan Supreme Court is concerned about the "irreparable harm" Sony would suffer, but how about the irreparable harm already done to Kesha? For Sony to keep her tied to a place she no longer feels safe is cruel. For Sony to not take action regarding the allegations should be criminal. What never ceases to anger and frustrate me is how much of the entertainment industry is so keen to turn a blind eye when crimes like this happen. Over the last couple years we've been pushing the NFL to improve how they handle players who are accused of domestic violence and sexual assault, and we need to do the same across industries.
Part of why being a woman in this industry is so difficult is because of men like Dr. Luke. It is so easy for men of power to take advantage of young women, especially of the young women who are trying to climb the ladder, be it as artists or executives. Just last week, I heard a young executive go on about her flirtations with the oldest fart in the room, and she was so proud that "he grabbed [her] boob." It's so innocent, he'll buy her a few drinks and maybe make a few intros--what's wrong with that and a little flirtation? What's wrong with that is that that undoes all the gender equality we're fighting for. There are so many women who have been in Kesha's shoes and so many more who will be in her shoes if we do not as an industry change how we value and respect women.
As a licensed attorney, I have to believe in our justice system, imperfect as it is, though from what I've read I'm not so sure how I feel about this particular judge. What I cannot believe in is how this major corporation is choosing to handle the allegations. Together with the ruling, this will only encourage more women to stay quiet when they should not have to. Not only is it expensive and a drawn out process taking up time and emotion to go through court proceedings, which alone can deter many women from moving forward in this manner, but now we're basically being told that Kesha is an investment and her sexual assault and abuse claims come second to that, if even that.
I strongly urge all entertainment industry companies to look at how they handle such issues and act as a company that cares for the well-being of all its employees, act as a company that respects women, and act as a company that's going to help put a stop to sexual assault and abuse. For all the young females in the industry, particularly those in their teens and early-20's, it's a weird time of self-growth and self-discovery, but don't be afraid to stand up for yourself. Respect yourself. You'll get much further without having to be fondled, or mentally and physically abused. There are people in the industry who will take advantage of you, but there are people who will support you and respect you, too.
BIG LOVE & HUGS