By REGINA SÁNCHEZ JIMÉNEZ
The news story that has most shocked in Hollywood lately has been coveeage of Harvey Weinstein’s harassment.
It was The New York Times that published an article with statements and letters of women that have been harassed by Weinstein on Oct. 5. Journalists Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor authored the story.
After that, a succession of publications reporting the same crime appeared. For example, Ronan Farrow published in The New Yorker an investigation of 13 sexual harassment instances and three rapes by Harvey Weinstein. The New York Times issued another report with the statement of celebrities, as Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow claimed have been harassed as well.
The question that I wondered was: How had something that has been happening for so long not gone public before? Why does everybody want to speak now?
The answer was easy. As articles about more harassment cases were showing up, also other journalists reported that they tried to publish that information before but they were blocked. In some cases, professional colleagues as Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, were involved.
— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) October 10, 2017
Thanks to an article, actresses are denouncing Harvey Weinstein, Los Angeles police are investigating Weinstein and the truth has come to light.
#LAPD Robbery Homicide Div has interviewed a potential sexual assault victim involving Harvey Weinstein in 2013. Investigation ongoing
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) October 19, 2017
Again, we can see the important role that news media play in the world. A newspaper, in this case, The New York Times, could uncover a crime and encourage victims to report it. If it hadn’t happened, as the other articles that were censored, a criminal would be still unpunished, victims muted, the world would ignore the truth, and there could be no justice.
So, that’s why news media have to be independent of external pressures. Because this is the way that they can do their work and function as a “watchdog” in society.