‘Repulsive slander’

#MeToo movement members condemn ‘vicious cyberbullying’ of Asia Argento in wake of Anthony Bourdain’s suicide

Italian actress Asia Argento poses as she arrives on May 19, 2018 for the closing ceremony and the screening of the film "The Man Who Killed Don Quixote" at the 71st edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France. (Photo by Loic VENANCE / AFP) (Photo credit should read LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images)

Dozens of prominent members of the #MeToo movement have come forward to issue a statement of support for Asia Argento in response to the “vicious cyberbullying and repulsive slander” the actress has been subjected to following the death of her boyfriend, Anthony Bourdain.

“There has long been a traditional narrative of blaming, vilifying and martyring courageous women. We reject that narrative. If there is one thing we know with unwavering confidence, ‘sexual violence victim’ is not a title anyone wants attached to themselves,” read a statement signed by 45 women and men who are prominent in the #MeToo movement — including Rosanna Arquette, Zoë Brock, Terry Crews, Paz De La Huerta, Lucia Evans, Rose McGowan, Olivia Munn, Anthony Rapp, Johnathon Schaech, Mira Sorvino, Jessica Barth, and Lauren Sivan.

“All of us who have taken the risk of coming forward — and it is truly a risk to us, our reputations, relationships and mental health — have faced harsh criticism and often outright anger and hatred online, in our respective communities and, for some, within our own families. Yet we come forward in the hope that we can change things for others and end the sexual violence and abuse that has flourished with impunity for millennia,” the statement continued. “We are here to ask those who are angry and grieving the loss of Anthony to find a healthy outlet for their pain. Asia is a survivor, just as we are, and her fame and outward show of strength does not make her any less vulnerable. Asia is not a headline — she is a human being, and she is in horrific pain.”

Argento, who helped transform the #MeToo movement from a spark into an inferno when she came forward to The New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow about an alleged rape she suffered at the hands of disgraced media mogul Harvey Weinstein, has been accused by conservative social media users and fans of the late chef of both precipitating Bourdain’s suicide and of using the #MeToo movement to garner herself media attention. Unfortunately, such commenters also appear to ignore Bourdain’s open acknowledgement that he had suffered depression for years — a condition that he said often manifested itself uncontrollably and without any real discernible cause. Bourdain had also credited Argento with opening his eyes to the dire consequences of toxic masculinity after he witnessed firsthand Argento being driven out of Italy by the condemnation she faced for daring to speak out against Weinstein. Weinstein, who has been charged with multiple sex crimes by prosecutors in New York City and faces similar investigations in Los Angeles and London, has continued to deny the allegations.

In April, Argento appeared onstage with Ronan Farrow at the Women in the World New York summit and discussed the aftermath of her decision to come forward with the accusations against Weinstein. Watch that full interview below.

Read the full story at The Wrap.

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