Tavis Smiley joins the ranks of the media and entertainment unwashed, drowning in firings, suspensions, and confessional regarding the mediocre to poor treatment of women. Or the allegations thereof.
Long time talk show host Smiley was suspended indefinitely by PBS, and blacklisted by Walmart, who removed his book from their shelves, resulting from an unnamed, non-detailed, non-disclosed accusation of the mistreatment of a female employee during an unmentioned period of time. Seems like enough for a conviction.
Normally, the lack of any details of a sexual harassment allegation work against the current crop of hunted males, and in this case, it kind of did since Smiley was sent home packing under a cloud of suspicion. However, it also lends itself to a strong man’s defense, since nobody knows what the hell really happened.
Smiley contends that investigators hired by PBS to look into allegations that he had sex with female employees intimidated witnesses to provide damming evidence against Smiley, and encourage them to embellish facts and circumstances. And that the notion that he had multiple sexual relationships with female employees was bogus.
Smiley took to Facebook in a video outlining his outrage over his suspension, the injustice of the decision, and an insistence that nothing happened, whatever the fuck it was:
“Let me also assure you that I have never groped, inappropriately exposed myself or coerced any colleague in the workplace ever in my 30-year career.”
“If having a consensual relationship with a colleague years ago is the stuff that leads to this kind of public humiliation and personal destruction, heaven help us.”
This is either the writings of a man who is either guilty as charged or completely innocent. How the hell would anybody know. In the Charlie Rose and Matt Lauer similar situations, we got detail, substantiation, and multiple complainants. Here there seems to be on unknown source.
Assume for the moment Smiley is largely innocent. Then, yeah, heaven help us. This widespread unruled retribution campaign is out of control. There are influential women openly suggesting that nailing a few not-guilty men is the cost of cleaning house. That not only flies in the face of American justice tradition, but it’s truly shitty thinking from the likes of a conquering army.
America needs a hero. A big beautiful black hero with a heretofore sterling reputation.