With all the sexual harassment and assault accusations flying around these days (and worse) it makes sense to ask: what the heck is wrong with the cultures/industries that have tolerated such behavior? Sure, the men are horrible, but it seems like there were also plenty of women who enabled the men (for example, Harvey Weinstein's assistants).

The woman, who was in her early 30s when she was employed at the Weinstein Company, echoed the complaints of others who have worked for the disgraced producer, alleging that his staff was forced to do demeaning and humiliating tasks to facilitate and cover up his philandering. Many, including her, she claimed, didn't suspect they were enabling sexual assault or rape.

"He had manipulated everyone in his path with that one purpose, and that was for sex," she said. "It's awful. I should have walked out. I should have said something."

During the entire course of my life I have never found myself in a position where I've encountered systemic sexual harassment or assault, so I've never had to make a choice about hiding it or revealing it. (I'm not omniscient, so I don't claim to know everything that has happened in all of my work/social circles.)

The sheer volume of accusations coming out of Hollywood and Washington, DC, is astounding to me, and the volume suggests that these cultures are systemically flawed. I don't believe this kind of systemic sexual behavior is the "normal" experience for most Americans.

Maybe the "Pence rule" is looking pretty good?

Hey, remember that one time the left and basically everyone in mainstream media threw an utter conniption fit when Mike Pence said he makes it a point not to share private meals or meetings with women when his wife is not present? ...

The vice president understands that as a man in a position of power, he is vulnerable to rumor, misinterpreted intentions and flat out lies. One way to protect oneself from those things is to always make sure a third party is present in any meeting. In addition, as we have seen with the revelations from the last few weeks of the horrific (and even criminal) sexual misconduct of some of the most powerful men in America, power has a tendency to corrupt and leave one vulnerable to the temptation to wield that power. By choosing to not let the opportunity get a even a toe in the door, Pence is recognizing that no man is above making bad choices and he's doing everything in his power to avoid the trappings of his station.

Only in 2017 America can that be seen as character flaw.

Update:

Look at these revelations from the TED Talks non-profit! It isn't "merely" young, naive, vulnerable women being harassed (as if that weren't bad enough).

At least five people, including a past main stage speaker, told TED officials that they were harassed or groped during the organization's flagship conference in Vancouver in April, according to interviews and email correspondence seen by The Washington Post.

The nonprofit's general counsel Nishat Ruiter said in an April email to TED's senior leadership that she, too, had been "touched inappropriately but let it go." She added she was finding it difficult to believe the issue was being "addressed by TED effectively. We are clearly not doing enough." [...]

The Post reviewed email exchanges among senior TED officials at the time of the April conference, sparked by a complaint by a long-time attendee, who complained of sexual harassment and being offered "every drug known to man." The problem was so bad that the woman decided to pack her bags and leave, telling Anderson that it would be her last TED conference.

TED speakers are prominent people, and they're getting secretly groped? Someone inappropriately touched TED's top lawyer? How can creeps feel safe enough to behave this way? What the heck is wrong with these people?

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