What do we do with notorious sex offenders who make beloved art?

Actress, Writer, Director, and Feminist Whistle-Blower
Actress, author, and whistleblower Rose McGowan is here to tell you that American culture has been screwed up for a long, long time. She wonders how our society can defend a culture that embraces sexual deviants (see: Woody Allen, Louis C.K.) and clearly racist imagery (see: the Washington Redskins name and logo). She muses, too, on why American culture seems to be so bent on putting complex and thoughtful women second place to the likes of, as she puts it, a "slovenly slob" like Adam Sandler. Women deserve better, she posits. And we're absolutely inclined to agree. Rose McGowan's new book is aptly titled BRAVE.
  • Transcript

TRANSCRIPT

Rose McGowan: The thing we should do with people who create art that have done terrible things… 

Well, if you found out that the head of Johnson & Johnson was a serial rapist that everybody at Johnson & Johnson knew, one way or another, would you still buy that baby powder? 

Sorry your heroes are going away. Wah, there are more important things to do. Okay. Sorry. Bummer for you. Wahh. 

The construct of society, the raping and killing of women, there’s a channel called ID it’s devoted to 24 hours a day of sexualizing murder victims. Ok? Stop it. Stop it. Stop it. Stop it. That’s my message: just knock it off. 

Wah, you don’t get to like Woody Alan. Oh, what a big huge loss for you. I’m sure that compares to the girl who has just been raped that now feels like she wants to hang herself from the balcony. Because that really balances out. 

So when people bitch about that, sorry, bummer for you. You don’t watch Birth of a Nation do you? Probably not, because you know it’s racist. So in time these people will be looked at like that. 

My job—and others’ jobs that work in kind of what I’m doing—is to put an asterisk next to these assholes' names for all time.

And if people want to cry about not getting to like somebody they liked when they were kids? Well, get a fucking bigger problem. It’s not that complicated, people. It’s really not. It’s really not. It’s easy. Read a different book. That’s it. 

I have so many people fighting me because they want to stay in the system. The system benefits .0001 percent. My ultimate goal is smashing the 99 and the one percent. That’s what I’m here for. And I’m here to do that through thought and raising women up. 

And yes, in Children of God, the cult I was born into, and again it’s like oh make a big deal of the cult. I would be talking about Ohio if that happened to me my life, that just was not. But that’s a cult too, and I think you all know it

That’s the thing: it’s like, “Oh it’s so weird how you grew up.” I think it’s weird how you live. And I think it’s tragic. 

Because like ten percent, because there is a lot of free minds that are out there for sure, but we have to be vigilant. What if those ten percent of the world that you look at as the weirdos and the fringe people, what if it’s you guys? 

You know, like just like how African-Americans have been saying, “I remember hearing about it, reading about it when I was 13, that they get killed when they get pulled over by cops.” That would like us saying “Maybe.” 

Because someone said that to me in Germany recently; I said, “This is kind of what a woman experiences.” And he said, “Maybe,” waving his hand. 

We have like a trillion Ph.D.’s in being a woman. Why? Because we’re in our skin. And you know what’s sad? Is because when you get sold as an idea the other side thinks that’s what you are. So everybody is responding to us primarily as an idea that was sold to them through imagery.

Like Adam Sandler movies where you have Selma Hayek, Jessica Biel, Kate Beckinsale—these accomplished women—with Adam Sandler, who a slovenly slob who’s shtick is wearing dirty pants and basically having a 2.2 IQ, but the message they send out is “You deserve this.” 

And that directly, with all those young boys watching, leads to the idea of “I deserve that hot woman.” 

No. You actually deserve a complex woman, but only if you too can match that. 

During World War II each studio had served their rank, they served in the military, their rank was Ministers of Propaganda. 

And they came to them after the war and they said, “Holy crap, women are out of the kitchen. Get back in.” And that’s when we started seeing Doris Day like overdrive vacuuming. 

Because once we put video with sound, images with sound, things really have taken off fast. 

If you notice how fast the destruction of the world is going—I know I’m tying things together people are like, “Oh it can’t be responsible for all of that.” Actually it can. It really, really can. 

There’s that two-year-old on Facebook, that video that went around, he’s punching along with Rocky—two!—and everyone is like, “Isn't that cute?” 

No. Little Timmy there has just been stolen. You've just stolen what he is

And what you're talking about also you’re telling him what a man is, especially telling him what a white man is, and especially you’re telling him how to feel. Why are sports so popular in this stupid country? Why? 

Because here that’s how men the only time—traditionally—they’re “allowed” to have an expression of energy or a release of energy. Unfortunately, it’s in anger and aggression. But I- it’s a real Western societal and it’s a real American problem, worse than any other place I’ve been and I’ve been to a lot of places.

And I think when you come from a land with more time behind it — right — America keeps going, “We’re so young!” No we’re not. White people are young to it, you dummies. America is not young, you just renamed it. 

You know what they did in the twenties? I thought this was the height of American hubris—they gave Native Americans citizenship. They gave Indians citizenship, and called them American, do you know what I mean? 

Like that’s the mentality we’re dealing with, and they fight it on every level. “I don’t want the Redskins logo off this. I want—” Shut up. Shut up. Wahh, your sports team is sad now. 

The traditional shaming thing, what have we done since Hester Prynne? Come on, like since someone called Mary in the Bible? They did the same thing to me that they did to Mary.

Every interview was “what a man da, da, da.” So I understood the detail, the funneling and the system of how we sell ideas to people. 

But you have to understand it’s not just the media, it was like how my family treated me based on coverage because they’re wrestling with they kind of know me but they think they know me more from what they see in the media because that’s what they see. Same with any man or woman that I’ve ever been with, anything, friends, every— it affected everything. 

It was... but the prison wasn’t mine. That’s the whole thing. Unless you’re actually behind bars, those bars aren’t there, but we think they are. 

I was on Stephen Colbert last night and I was wearing a hoodie and he said, “oh, I wish I could wear that I have to wear this suit, because I was saying I hate suits I feel like whenever I wear them—“ and I was thinking, maybe men are cranky because of this, because you’re like a T-Rex. Your hands are like—you can’t move, it’s not fun, it’s uncomfortable and men don’t like to be uncomfortable, they don’t like itchy things, understandably. 

So that suit paradigm is stupid and I said, “Well, what would happen to you if you didn’t wear a suit?” And he’s like, “I have to wear a suit just for as long as I…” But why? 

And at the end we were talking about when the camera cut and kind of wondering like, why do I have to wear a suit? Who says? Who made that rule? Who cares? 

They also made the rule that it was indiscriminate and okay to rape and sexually assault in Hollywood. It’s also time to stop that in the world. That's all. Run on sentence?