In the past, when women came forward with accusations of sexual misconduct against well-known figures, the famous person usually ignored or denied the charges and people went on with their lives. Now, following the bombshell fallout over Harvey Weinstein’s decades-long lecherous treatment of women, executives, directors, and actors have literally been suspended within two hours from a single accusation. If more than one accuser goes on the record, that famous person gets fired from all of his projects and various companies sever all ties to him.
Award-winning comedian Louis C.K., who admitted masturbating in front of numerous women, lost his manager, agent, publicist, and network within hours of confessing.
George Takei as Sulu in “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” (1982).
So it was shocking to hear Friday night of someone accusing George Takei of drugging a 23-year-old actor/model in 1981 when the “Star Trek” actor was 43 or 44, trying to take off his underwear and touching his genitals. Scott Brunton told The Hollywood Reporter, “He goes, ‘You need to relax. I am just trying to make you comfortable. Get comfortable.’ And I said, ‘No. I don’t want to do this.’ And I pushed him off and he said, ‘OK, fine.’”
Four of Scott Brunton’s friends went on record, saying he had told them the story years ago. The accuser said that in 1994 when Takei was on a book tour in Portland, he had coffee with Takei but chickened out of confronting him on what had happened in 1981 (Oregonlive.com even ran a shot of Takei’s autograph on his biography, “To the Stars,” addressed to “Scott” with the 1994 date).
Brunton said he decided to come forward after Takei blasted Kevin Spacey for announcing he was gay as a way to deflect accusations of sexually assaulting a minor in the ’80s. Takei had said being gay had nothing to do with what Spacey did; he had power and abused it. Brunton felt Takei was being a hypocrite and wanted an apology from him.
Takei responded on Twitter that he doesn’t remember “Bruton [sic].” “But those that know me understand that non-consensual acts are so antithetical to my values and my practices, the very idea that someone would accuse me of this is quite personally painful.”
Accuser Scott Brunton in the 1980s.
Many of us waited, hoping it wasn’t true and that no one else would assert similar experiences with Takei (once others feel it’s safe, they break their silence; just ask Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore). But people started posting audio of a recent interview Takei had done with Howard Stern. Speaking of the allegations against Weinstein, the shock jock asked Takei, “Did you ever grab anybody by the c*ck against their will?”
There was silence, then Stern’s sidekick Robin Quivers and Takei both laughed, sounding as if both said “oh oh” at the same time. Stern asked, “You never sexually harassed any___” (Takei interrupted him, saying, “Hey boner!”)
Silence again. Takei started, “Uh…” Stern pushed again, “Have you?” Takei let out a long laugh. “It’s-it’s- some people that are kind of um, um…skittish, or maybe, um, uh, afraid, and you’re trying to persuade…”
Stern: “What are you saying, George? There were t– but you never held a job over somebody if they didn’t…c*ck?”
“Oh, no, no, no, I never did that. That’s what this is about. It’s not about sex. It’s about power. It’s about power.’
Quivers: “But you never did this grabbing at work?” Takei said, “Oh no, no, no, it wasn’t at work. It was either in my home. They came to my home…”
Stern: “So what do you mean, like if some guy was hesitating to have sex with you, and then you gave him a gentle, uh, squeeze on the balls or something?”
After consideration, Takei added, “More than a gentle!” and laughed. “But it didn’t involve power over the other.”
Tuesday, Takei apologized for the joke, explaining that on the show, he’s played a “naughty gay grandpa,” which he considered a “caricature.” Meaning he was playing a character when he answered those questions. He also said his joking with Stern was in a “sketch.” Hmm. I dunno. I thought he was doing a straight interview.
Check it out here (warning – explicit language).
Oh, Come On! Department: “Saturday Night Live,’ which has proved its racism over the past 42 years by never hiring an Asian American cast member and rarely one who hosted, was quick to pick up on the accusation against Takei at the “Weekend Anchor” desk when Cecily Strong looked at her phone and asked incredulously, “George Ta-KAI?!”
Yeesh. At least pronounce the name right. As Takei infamously pointed out, it’s “Ta-KAY” as in “gay.”