Thankfully, Harvey Weinstein’s political allies aren’t falling for his shtick of promising to repent and to “channel [his] anger” toward Wayne LaPierre and the NRA. Over the past two weeks, he has been ritually denounced by practically every entertainment industry collaborator and political beneficiary he collected over a remarkable three-decade career in pictures and politics.
Yet Weinstein is just the latest in a long line of men whose left-wing politics coexisted harmoniously with retrograde attitudes about women. In his statement, Weinstein said that he “came of age in the 60’s and 70’s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different.” Many people scoffed at this explanation, as this was precisely the time when women’s liberation brought workplace sexism to the societal forefront. But Weinstein was right in a way he didn’t comprehend. Ever since second-wave feminism became part of the political left, there have been men who, ostensibly enlightened in the realm of gender relations, are in fact deeply misogynist and believe that their progressive street cred somehow obviates their attitudes about women, attitudes as regressive as those held by the Mad Men-era males who ruled the earth just before the sexual revolution.