Author Topic: Why not just bring back banishment?  (Read 1071 times)

Fenring

  • Members
    • View Profile
Why not just bring back banishment?
« on: September 06, 2018, 11:42:43 AM »
Saw this article today, about a scene that got pulled from the new Predator movie at the last minute. Apparently it was discovered that an actor playing a bit part had been previously convicted as a "sex offender" and when this came to light they removed his scene from the film.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/la-et-mn-the-predator-shane-black-steven-wilder-striegel-20180906-story.html#

Quote
But last month, Munn learned that Striegel is a registered sex offender who pleaded guilty in 2010 after facing allegations that he attempted to lure a 14-year-old female into a sexual relationship via the internet. When Munn shared the information with Fox on Aug. 15, studio executives quickly decided to excise him from the movie.

[...]

“I personally chose to help a friend,” Black said in a written statement to The Times. “I can understand others might disapprove, as his conviction was on a sensitive charge and not to be taken lightly.”

But he said he has long believed that Striegel was “caught up in a bad situation versus something lecherous.”

Munn said she found it “both surprising and unsettling that Shane Black, our director, did not share this information to the cast, crew, or Fox Studios prior to, during, or after production.”

I was a huge cheerleader for getting the rapists and pedophiles out of Hollywood, and smoking out those who hid behind their power and enforced silence like Weinstein. However naturally things always go too far and instead of just becoming vigilant against certain scenarios and actions we are seeing repeatedly in Hollywood that any past sin will now destroy a person's career. If that 'sin' happened to be molesting and even raping people then that is probably an appropriate response. But (as for example in the case of Gunn, from Guardians of the Galaxy) that is by no means the only sin that is being punished. And the general tone in general, between Roseanne, Gunn, and other cases, is that if a person is 'tainted' they are gone. The taint in this case is that a man tried to get a date online with a 14 year old. No doubt that's not a good thing to try to do, but he was convicted and did his time, and I haven't heard that he's a repeat offender or that this was just the tip of the iceberg or anything like that. He did a bad thing, once. But apparently that's enough to make it unacceptable for you to work in film ever again.

Maybe we should bring back good old banishment, with a one strike you're out system. That would clear up all of the concern about who's pure and who's evil; if you ever do a bad thing you're gone and no one ever has to see you again. Is that what people are asking for now?

Seriati

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2018, 12:01:12 PM »
I'm not sure I follow your point.  But yes, people are asking that anyone convicted of sex crimes with minors be effectively exiled.  Many communities won't even let them live there, and it's almost certainly going to prevent them from getting most jobs.

Fenring

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2018, 12:09:10 PM »
I'm not sure I follow your point.  But yes, people are asking that anyone convicted of sex crimes with minors be effectively exiled.  Many communities won't even let them live there, and it's almost certainly going to prevent them from getting most jobs.

My point is that putting a guy who tried to get a single date with a 14 year old in with Weinstein as a category is insane. And also that I fear that the issue here isn't the studio execs trying to 'keep their neighborhood safe' but rather just another move to safeguard optics. I suspect that this move is in the same category as firing Gunn and Roseanne, insofar as anyone who can be seen as potentially 'problematic' is removed. While I still root for the truly insidious elements in Hollywood to be rooted out, I think that going after low hanging fruit that has already been 'corrected' for the purpose of optics is veering into the territory of a purity-test. It's still better than when no one did anything about anything, but on the other hand I'm concerned about the lawnmower approach to social purity where anyone who sticks out will be cut off.

Seriati

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2018, 12:18:10 PM »
Not sure why you are emphasizing the age, when the age is 14.  We don't view pressuring adults for sex the same way we view pressuring children.

Fenring

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2018, 12:30:08 PM »
Not sure why you are emphasizing the age, when the age is 14.  We don't view pressuring adults for sex the same way we view pressuring children.

I emphasized it to make it clear that it was a bad thing to attempt, although the article didn't specify the details of the conviction (i.e. did he clearly know she was 14, or what were the circumstances, etc.). I guess my point is a little vague, but it strikes me as horrible to think of a world where if you do one bad thing you're done forever, even if you do your time and try to get past it. It reminds me of Les Miserables where Valjean walks around with his parole papers and is treated like a sub-human who can be taken advantage of because he's nothing and not equal to anyone else. I find that particular aspect to Valjean's story among the saddest parts, and it saddens me to see American society adopting a similar mentality in some respects. It's no surprise that Valjean chooses to tear up his papers and break his parole since he isn't being given a fair chance. In such circumstances even a good man will try to hide his crime to avoid the disproportionate penalty for it (unfair penalties being called "justice" being a theme of the book).

On the one hand, we want to incentivize rooting out corrupt systems and people, like Weinsteins. On the other hand we don't want to actively create disincentives to people coming clean and reforming, or you end up actually creating a toxic environment.

TheDrake

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2018, 06:18:52 PM »
I think I'd be more bothered by this if it weren't entertainment. Like if he were the manager of a Taco Bell, or he were a mechanic. But we're talking here about entertainment, and there are a different set of rules. Heck, I'd probably be more bothered if he was working as a grip on the set.

Quote
“Our studio was not aware of Mr. Striegel’s background when he was hired,” a Fox spokesperson said in a statement to The Times. “We were not aware of his background during the casting process due to legal limitations that impede studios from running background checks on actors.”

Companies do background checks all the time, I wonder what weird legal rule is in play here.

Fenring

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2018, 07:12:04 PM »
Although I agree, Drake, that entertainment is a unique animal, I see this as being no different than other cases we've seen outside of entertainment where the mere fear of backlash is enough to take action to address a theoretical problem that may not actually be a problem. The same has happened on university campuses, and I guess I can trot out Brendan Eich again. The recent explosion in Hollywood certainly makes this sort of thing understandable, but it's not all that different in type then what's happening outside of Hollywood to an extent as well. I just hope we don't see a general trend towards blacklisting, basically.

TheDrake

  • Members
    • View Profile
Re: Why not just bring back banishment?
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2018, 07:26:17 PM »
I'd have to be hard pressed if that were my decision. I've interviewed a bunch of candidates, selected the person I want, and the background check shows that 5 years ago they did time for luring a child in this manner. Do I follow through with the hire, assuming that I can legally bail out? It might depend. Did I have a close second choice? Am I hiring a middle school teacher, or a truck driver? Am I going to be worried at the company picnic?

Aren't there some things that are beyond redemption? And if so, which?

And was this really ONE bad thing? After all, he was found out by the girl's father and then gave her a secret phone so he could keep calling her.