This is everything that is wrong about the Woody vs. MiaDylan circus. It’s a hazy interpretation of meanings and symbols as portrayals of motives and agendas, both hidden, and not. How did such a tale of marital implosion laced with accusations of pedophilia became a crux of ideological sparring?
Like most matters of human collective dispute, certain “perspectives” tend to accompany a tool-set of beliefs and values by proxy and you will thus discover that the group who believes in “A” will tend to share many values and lifestyle habits that are attendant to believing “A” even though it may, on the surface, be unrelated to other overlapping personal traits. Likewise, those who believe “B” will also share similar outlooks. Consequently, the debate between A’s and B’s assumes a deeper, universal significance that eventually trumps the very subject of A or B now because the conflict becomes that of looking at life as an A person would versus how a B person might look at life. Conflict A and B, the nexus of the argument, sparks the eventual tension that supersedes the original argument in content.
I’ve mentioned this before in the matter of my atheism (which I shall conveniently and lazily refer to as “A” for the purpose of this discussion). As an atheist, I believe in A, however, I nevertheless find that I’m a person who generally maintains a B perspective of humanity. So in arguing on behalf of atheism (and against the concept of god), I discover often that I’m sharing the same side of the debate table with people I tend to disagree with on many other subjects. It’s just that we happen to share our disbelief in any sort of deity.
Likewise, in the matter of Woody Allen and Dylan Allen (BTW, that’s snark), I find that this stupid 20-year-old no-starter of a newsflash is symbolic of greater philosophical and ideological chasms than the mere debate of whether or not Woody Allen did unspeakable things with a 7-year-old daughter. On the one hand, there are those who believe Woody Allen is a man of utter contempt and sexual sociopathy, and that his guilt is an unquestionable fact. On the the other hand, there are those who, while not necessarily defending his innocence, still insist on an open mind and question the motives of those who have accused Allen two decades later, long after the allegations were addressed at the time of their alleged occurrence, especially on the eve of the stupid Academy Awards which seem to be more trouble than they are worth most of the time.
This case, this public matter, is convoluted and suffused with many layers of absolute cluster-fuckedness. You have people who would normally not side with the emblematic Hollywood Jewish liberal, and others who would adulate this type, sparring against each other but from opposite ends of the spectrum you’d normally find them housed. There are the White Knighters, the Professional Abuse Victims, the Feminists, all of them congealing in this sordid affair that should have been shut long ago, and creating densely tense and castigatory critical mass atmospherics of close-minded zealotry.
I am a Woody Allen “defender” inasmuch as I recognize how direly our American legal and mass media culture errs on the side of the weak and helpless while simultaneously shrugging off the rights of men and any sense of due process. I also recognize that men like Allen are easy fodder for the female cultural bullies who exploit sexual female victimhood behind their stern pet panaceas that serve to rile everyone up and light the almighty fuse of Ass-Covering that leads to people making rash decisions for the sake of making it look like they are “doing something” because this is how the game is played now. Recognizing Allen’s position as such, I am merely choosing to appraise the situation cooly and neutrally. I refuse to fall into the “Oh my god that is horrible, oh that poor Dylan” sanctification trap.
This dichotomy and its sibling pattern of disjointed, self-serving argumentative motives, is best epitomized in this Vanity Fair article by Maureen Orth, who evidently has never met a child-sex-abuse allegation she is unwilling to cast a cold eye upon.
First, VF promises us “10 truths” about the Woody Allen affair on the homepage teaser.
Then when we open the story, we discover that in fact, it’s a personal screed by Orth in which she now clarifies that these are “undeniable facts” before proceeding with her chintzy list of orphan talking points presented kindly for all the hysterical pervert-bashers who seek to hang all men who are accused by young girls of inappropriate behavior.
Therein lies the problem, now.
Truth and undeniable fact are dissimilar in the sense that one is reason while the other is polemic, and to blur the lines of the two in itself projects an unmistakable motive.