Rose McGowan is facing backlash on social media after urging people on Monday to be “gentle” and not jump to conclusions after a bombshell report revealed that Asia Argento agreed to pay $380,000 to an actor who accused her of sexually assaulting him when he was 17 years old.
“I got to know Asia Argento ten months ago. Our commonality is the shared pain of being assaulted by Harvey Weinstein. My heart is broken. I will continue my work on behalf of victims everywhere,” said McGowan, who played a pivotal role in the downfall of disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein.
“None of us know the truth of the situation and I’m sure more will be revealed. Be gentle,” she added, sparking condemnations and accusations of hypocrisy.
Her comments came amid a New York Times report that Argento, who was one of the first prominent women to accuse Weinstein of sexual assault, allegedly assaulted a then-underage former child star in a California hotel room in 2013. The newspaper obtained documents sent between lawyers for Argento and the accuser that laid out a payment schedule.
Many on social media called out McGowan’s comments, claiming her rhetoric was starkly different when others were accused of sexual misconduct.
Christina Hoff Sommers, an American Enterprise Institute scholar and critic of the modern feminist movement, accused McGowan of “hypocrisy” and having “double standards” when it comes to male survivors of sexual assault.
”The answer to male privilege is not female privilege. The answer is basic fairness for all,” Sommers tweeted. “#Metoo movement will fail if its leaders engage in hypocrisy, cronyism & double standards. Rose McGowan’s advice should apply to all who are accused, not just to her friend #AsiaArgento. Old-girl network (Judith Butler, Gayatri Spivak) defending #AvitalRonell discredits #Metoo.”
Others issued similar condemnations of McGowan. “Y’all love calling out abusers/rapists but the second one of your friends turns out to be one, you say stuff like this. Truly amazing how quick people are to drop everything they supposedly believe in,” read a tweet that gathered nearly five thousand interactions.
“‘Be gentle’? Why? Because she’s a woman and your friend? Your comments are a major slap in the face to everything the #MeToo movement represents. Double standards beyond belief,” tweeted actor Harry Cook. “This is a contradiction to everything you apparently stand for. What happened to believe all victims? Or does that only count when it’s not your buddy?”
Some have also pointed that just last week McGowan was announced to be the recipient of Inspiration award at the 21st annual GQ Men Of The Year Awards 2018 and urged the men’s lifestyle magazine to revoke the award.