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The Woman Defending Harvey Weinstein

The Woman Defending Harvey Weinstein

Update: 2020-02-0775
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Note: This episode contains descriptions of sexual violence.

In the trial of Harvey Weinstein, six women have taken the stand, each making similar accusations of rape and sexual assault against the movie producer. Throughout their testimony, Weinstein’s defense lawyers have portrayed those encounters as consensual and suggested that in many cases it was the women who wanted something from Mr. Weinstein. His lawyers have seized on the fact that the two women whose accounts are at the center of the criminal charges in his New York trial agreed to have sex and friendly contact with Mr. Weinstein after they were allegedly victimized. Today, one of The Times reporters who broke the story of Mr. Weinstein’s alleged abuse more than two years ago speaks with Donna Rotunno, the lawyer behind Mr. Weinstein’s legal strategy.

Guests: Megan Twohey, an investigative reporter for The Times and co-author of “She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement," spoke with Donna Rotunno, Harvey Weinstein’s lead defense lawyer. For more information on today’s episode, visit nytimes.com/thedaily. 

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Comments (49)

roberto cano

females like the lady doing the interview are fuckin sad. females use their body to get what they want and when they don't they yell rape. that's a fact and very common. it's disgusting. idk if harvey is completely innocent but this lady got stupid annoying.

Feb 20th
Reply

Crystal Bush

I agree, everyone deserves a defense, but to say that the victim is favored by police is a gross misstatement. Victims are told by police that you must be asulted before they can do anything even if the person has a history.

Feb 11th
Reply

Diane Peters

Simply old-fashioned victim blaming. Nothing new and nothing special about this attorney or her skill set. We shouldn't be surprised: women can be misogynists too.

Feb 11th
Reply

Es Dawg

The interviewer clearly doesn't believe accused men deserve a defense. More so, she is genuinely upset with the notion that women would ever lie on a man. Because we all know that women are incapable of lying.

Feb 11th
Reply

Lori Daly

the devil's assistant hard at work. 😭

Feb 10th
Reply

Albert H

Omg! That turn at the 24 min mark was sooo shocking! Unbelievable!

Feb 10th
Reply

Albert H

Omg! That turn at around the 24 min mark was sooo shocking! Unbelievable!

Feb 10th
Reply

Andi-Roo Libecap

I'm still worked up over this a day later. Because here's my thing: I have zero problem believing that men are completely incapable of controlling themselves because they are living by their most base instincts. That means, obviously, that they are more monkey than man. Which is cool, because monkeys don't get to vote or own land. So either men are monkeys, or they are actually people with brains and they need to keep their goddamn hands to themselves. But, as dipshit Donna says, you can't have it both ways. Am I assuming that all men are monkeys, and that just walking out my front door means I'm likely to get raped? If yes, then I can safely assume that Weinstein, being a disgusting monkey, raped all those women. BOOM. Case mother fucking closed, asshole. Contrary wise, if men aren't monkeys, but are rather upstanding citizens who would simply never engage in such negative behavior, then women should feel absolutely safe going out in public, and are not EVER to be held responsible for a rapist's aberrant behavior, because why would women automatically assume that a man would rape her and prepare for that highly unlikely situation? In which case, stop blaming victims for being raped, asshole. BOOM. Case mother fucking closed. You lose either way. Wanna know why? Because, Donna, you are a loser.

Feb 9th
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Amanda Bennett

#RonanFarrow needs to get a hold of this chick

Feb 9th
Reply

Lane Frasier

God, she is a piece of work

Feb 8th
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Vanessa Vartabedian

Harvey's defense lawyer promoted that men should ask women to sign consent forms before engaging in sexual contact with them. Not only is this convenient for a man who wants to commit sexual assault, since he now has signed consent as evidence, BUT why should it not be a MUTUAL consent form? Or even better, consent from the man that he consents to act respectfully and in compliance with the woman's specific boundaries and limits? Why not just videotape the whole thing as evidence?!!! (this is a sarcastic, overheated feeling of we're in an impossible-situation-with-consent remark) The only real answer seems to be a culture shift and a deeper more honest and open conversation about sex and respect and gender. #meetoo #youtoo

Feb 8th
Reply

Andi-Roo Libecap

Basically we should assume all men are pigs. (But by that logic, pigs don't get voices.) She's saying, "Men will be rapey but let's not assume that when a woman accuses a man of rape that he is actually rapey because she should've known he was rapey even tho he didn't be rapey." WHICH ONE IS IT OMFG!

Feb 8th
Reply

Nance G.

"I didn't drink too much.. I never went home with someone that I didn't know" fucking excuse me. if men can do it women should be free to do whatever, whenever they want. I always have to be afraid of men? What about men being taught that rape isn't right. And if we don't hold rapists accountable this shit will never change. Fuck Donna

Feb 8th
Reply (2)

Sarah Hanka

I am always open to hearing both sides of this debate and the nuances within, but I'm afraid I can't take Donna seriously because she is so inconsistent and won't articulate a clear viewpoint. "Women are sexually assaulted because they do not take precautions"...Megan repeats her statement back to her.."no that is not what I am saying" etc

Feb 8th
Reply

Emily Miller

Imagine signing her consent form, then the man knows he can get away with rape. Plus, that bullshit anyway, the signature could be coerced after rape.

Feb 8th
Reply (2)

Amy3422

I take my hat off to Megan Twohey for staying calm throughout this interview. Donna's argument is essentially that women should go into every situation prepared for men to try to attack them. Are men not insulted and repulsed by this?

Feb 8th
Reply

Cuc Mauldin

I can't stand this. Sin my a@@. the fact is see wrong things and defense it is a big mess. no moral

Feb 7th
Reply

Gayle Choojitarom

She says that she "would never put (herself) in that position" & that "responsibility (for avoiding sexual assault) should be equal". In college, a guy I'd hung out with many times in our group of friends walked me to my car late at night "to make sure I was safe." I manually unlocked the car door & turned to thank him when he pushed me against my car, grabbed my breast & tried to kiss me. While in a file room at work, a male supervisor followed me in & put his hand on my ass & whispered, "You look good today." I was wearing the same medical scrubs I wore every day. But, yeah, cool story, lady... 🙄

Feb 7th
Reply

Walter Stem

I actually thoroughly enjoyed this episode. Saying she never put herself in a position for something to happen to her is a bit far fetched. i agree with her about the better decision making to keep yourself out of unfavorable situations. especially with people. not just men, of power. at this day and age you know the agenda of people with money and power. they'll use it to get sex whether consensually or non consensually, don't be naive. keep yourself safe

Feb 7th
Reply (2)

Tony Zac

come on!? seriously! I'm with Donna on this one on her views of how women or ANYBODY for that matter, to use dam logic before placing your self in a dangerous situation.

Feb 7th
Reply (7)
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The Woman Defending Harvey Weinstein

The Woman Defending Harvey Weinstein