Monday, February 3, 2014

A Rebuttal To Robert Weide's Daily Beast Article On Woody Allen

As I keep reading the fall out of Dylan Farrow’s open letter about the abuse she says she suffered at the hands of Woody Allen, the article that keeps getting tossed around is by Robert Weide, that was published by The Daily Beast. Now, I love reading the Daily Beast but, in this case, the fact checkers must have taken the day off when this piece came about.

Mr. Weide is obviously another member of the Woody Allen Sycophant club, though he denies it throughout his piece. But, his piece is sorely lacking in empathy for Dylan Farrow and the rest of the children of Mia Farrow for the harm that Woody Allen caused. And, not just for the possible molestation of Dylan, which is horrendous enough. But for his general lack of humanity. From screwing their sister, Soon-Yi Previn, to the horrendous name calling of Mia Farrow (their mother) to his attempt to get custody of the three children he shared with Mia Farrow after the accusations of molestation came out. When you read the court summaries, Mr. Allen comes off as a monster of narcissism and his lack of empathy for anyone but himself is just disgusting.

The comments that Mr. Weide make are very telling of where Mr. Weide’s allegiances’lie. From Mr. Weide’s article: “Because he doesn’t go online, he was blissfully unaware of how much ink (sorry, bandwidth) the story was getting. If he had known, he still wouldn’t have cared. Mia’s accusations were old business, and the fact that Ronan was publicly chiming in meant nothing to Woody, who hadn’t even seen his (alleged) son for 20 years” Wow. This from a man who spent a lot of money trying to get custody of this “alleged” son. Ronan and Mr. Allen had a very difficult relationship, pretty much from day one. Mr. Allen blames Ms. Farrow, of course. But, his therapist, Dr. Coates, tried to show him that it was his lack of patience with the child and lack of attention that was causing the issues. The court also saw this and did try to encourage a relationship between Ronan and Mr. Allen but only under supervision. The story that does NOT get bandied about by the Woody Allen Sycophant Club or by Mr. Weide is when Ronan (then Satchell) was three and Mr. Allen was trying to get Ronan out of bed one morning. Ronan kicked him and told him to go away. Mr. Allen refused and Ronan kept kicking. Mr. Allen grabbed Ronan’s leg and twisted it, saying, “I’m going to break your fucking leg!” Ms. Farrow had to intervene. Dylan told this story to the Connecticut State Police. After the trial, Ronan was forced to continue visitations with Mr. Allen. There was another incident of Ronan kicking Mr. Allen and Mr. Allen getting physical with Ronan……this time, grabbing Ronan by the neck and throwing him onto the couch. Ronan continued to refuse to have anything to do with Mr. Allen and would throw tantrums in the office of his therapist during supervised visits. When he started to make himself sick, the therapist finally made the suggestion to the court to end the visitation. Ronan was seven. But Mr. Allen just doesn't care.

More evidence of where Mr. Weide’s loyalties lie is just this sentence…..”He then counseled me not to use up my ‘remaining days’ fretting over Mia.” In fact, his article goes over Ms. Farrow’s relationships with Andre Previn and Frank Sinatra, saying that because she was of similar age as Ms. Previn when she became involved with both men, that the two situations are comparable. Mr. Weide’s moral compass needs some balancing if he truly believes this. Ms. Previn was Ms. Farrow’s DAUGHTER. Mr. Allen was having a sexual relationship with her and Ms. Farrow found out by finding sexually explicit pictures of Ms. Previn on his mantle. I’m sorry, but pictures of your nude daughter, spread-eagle are not “erotic” or “artistic”. I’m also a photographer. When the pink is showing, that’s porn.

Another thing Mr. Weide fails to address is the very distressing way Mr. Allen handled this whole messy affair. He could not see (and still doesn't) why this was such an issue. And the courts really took notice of this. Not just Judge Wilk. Even the Appeals Court made the same observations when they denied Mr. Allen’s appeals. That was the biggest sticking points for everyone, when it came to the custody case. Woody Allen was an unsuitable parent to the three children. He would never acknowledge the Previn children. He differentiated between the biological children and the adopted children. He created chaos in the household with the staff, trying to turn everyone against one another. And he never accepts any responsibility for any of his behavior, which he does to this day.

Another tell is this very offensive sentence: “Did this event actually occur? If we’re inclined to give it a second thought, we can each believe what we want, but none of us know.” Wow. What a very insensitive thing to say about someone who was a victim. And, Mr. Weide, the courts believed Dylan. The police believed Dylan. The State’s Attorney believed Dylan. The only ones who didn't believe Dylan were people on Woody Allen’s payroll and sycophants like you. Again, if you go to the summaries of both the custody case AND the appeal, the courts both state that they think that Dylan was abused, that Ms. Farrow did NOT coach this child and that Mr. Allen is an unsavory person, who they denied custody to. If you believe that Ms. Farrow is such a great actress that she could fool a the first judge AND the Appellate Justices who heard the appeal and brainwash them , well, then, you are pretty gullible.

Mr. Weide also claims, “authorities never found credible evidence to support Mia’s (and Dylan’s) claim.” Again, not true. Mr. Maco found Dylan credible and felt he had enough to charge Mr. Allen. But, he felt Dylan was just too fragile. Mr. Allen played very dirty and, with his lack of empathy for anyone but himself, there is just no doubt that he would put that child through the wringer again, just to “win”. Mr. Maco did what was best for Dylan in the short term. The custody case had been torture for all the children in the Farrow family. Ms. Farrow had sole custody. To move forward would have not been in Dylan’s best interest. But, again, the only people who found Dylan not credible were on Woody Allen’s payroll or were sycophants. That is according to the judges. And it’s extremely offensive when you keep claiming that these claims are “Mia’s”. When you do that, you discount Dylan and her feelings. I know Woody Allen means a lot to you but to smear the victim and her mother are just low.

Now let’s address Mr. Weide’s statement about the Yale-New Haven evaluation. Dylan was evaluated NINE TIMES. That was highly excessive and not in Dylan’s best interest. And, Doctor Leventhal NEVER INTERVIEWED DYLAN. The team did. Yet, Dr. Leventhal wrote the report. Also, the team destroyed their notes, which is highly usual. That, in itself, made their report useless, as the court cannot make a determination without them. Also, the team would not testify. It would only give a deposition, which also made their evaluation very suspect. The judges in both the custody case and the appeal said that they wouldn't give the report much weight because of these reasons.

Mr. Weide also makes much about the pediatric exam, where Dylan didn’t come right out with the story. If you read the court summary, it’s not unusual for a child not to be immediately forthcoming and that the pediatrician told Ms. Farrow to bring Dylan back the next day. It’s embarrassing for a child to talk about. Even Ms. Farrow stated to her attorney, “I hope it’s just one of her fantasies.”

The nanny who recanted is laughable. Her salary was paid by Mr. Allen. What makes us believe that a woman, on his payroll, isn’t going to lie for him? As for what the other nanny said, that’s not even up for debate, as it’s hearsay. The other nanny has never confirmed that she said that.

I want to address the infamous polygraph. There is NO MENTION in either of the court summaries (first custody hearing and in any of the appeals) of Mr. Allen taking a polygraph or Ms. Farrow refusing to take one. When you do a search, you find articles, from that time, that come from MR. ALLEN’S ATTORNEY, J. Martin Obten. Mr. Obten also further states that he doesn't know who administered the test. Wow, that’s compelling! There is some articles alluding to an interview Mr. Allen did with "60 Minutes", where he gave the results to them and, possibly, "a battery of psychological tests", which, supposedly, Mr. Allen "passed". Was the doctor who gave the evaluations interviewed? Who witnessed the admission of the evaluations? What evaluations were used? These need to be answered because "passing tests" (you don't "pass" tests....evaluations is the key word) is vague. I can give you a diploma with my name on it that said I went to Harvard. It doesn't make it true. If you try to find anything concrete, you come up empty. And where did the story of Ms. Farrow refusing to take a polygraph come from? Because, in the stories at the time, there is no mention of it. And Mr. Allen spread the mud high and wide, saying she was a drunk and a pill popper, his sister saying that she was a “second-rate actress and a bad mother” and his friends spreading nasty rumors. As for the tape of Dylan being leaked by Ms. Farrow…..again, baseless. You can do the research yourself. All allegations always circle back to Mr. Allen’s camp but nothing concrete. It’s all rumor.

As for Mr. Maco being rebuked by the disciplinary panel….yes, that happened. The part Mr. Weide doesn’t discuss was that Mr. Allen’s team had private detectives investigating everyone involved in the case in Connecticut, looking for dirt. While what Mr. Maco did was probably out of line when he sent his report to the New York Surrogate Court, who was deciding the fate of the status of Mr. Allen’s adoption (and that adoption is another subject to discuss… that was not the correct avenue to go), Mr. Allen was involved in some activity that was not only questionable but possibly illegal.

I want to know……are Moses Farrow's claims that are in Mr. Weide’s article in his documentary? Did he speak to Moses Farrow? Because I did a pretty wide search and I came up with nothing. Even his Twitter feed is void. Moses Farrow has been completely mum for many years about the whole issue and is a Marriage and Family Counselor in Connecticut. And, after the bombshell this weekend, he is still mum. But, he had plenty to say at the time. He was very angry with Mr. Allen and wrote him a letter expressing his feelings. Of course, Mr. Allen attributed the letter to Ms. Farrow because, to him, it’s inconceivable that anyone would be angry with him for any of his actions. (An update on this.....apparently, what Mr. Weide said was true. Moses Farrow has spoke to People Magazine with the claims made by Mr. Weide. But, a reminder from the court summary...."With respect to Satchel, the IAS Court denied the petitioner's request for unsupervised visitation. While the court stated that it was not concerned for Satchel's physical safety, it was concerned by Mr. Allen's "demonstrated inability to understand the impact that his words and deeds have upon the emotional well being of the children". We agree. The record supports the conclusion that Mr. Allen may, if unsupervised, influence Satchel inappropriately, and disregard the impact exposure to Mr. Allen's relationship with Satchel's sister,"…..yes, they said it about Satchel but the point is that Mr. Allen was singled out by the court as the parent to be the one who would have inappropriate influence. Just food for thought.  But, I do have to say that I find his remarks about his father's relationship with his sister a bit alarming for a licensed Marriage and Family Counselor.  But, that is my own personal opinion. )

As for Mr. Allen and Ms. Previn adopting…..apparently, Dylan’s DCFS file has disappeared. Supposedly, it had been marked "indicated". Now, this I will tell you was according to Maureen Orth's Vanity Fair article, so you can give it what ever weight you will. But, that is probably how Mr. Allen and Ms. Previn were allowed to adopt. Not to mention how wealthy Mr. Allen is. It seems that things become less stringent when you have a lot of money and good lawyers. Look at how he was able to adopt Moses and Dylan. Adopting children of a single mother who had previously adopted them? And not being married to the mother? In 1991, that was unheard of.

I also love how Mr. Weide tries to muddy Ms. Farrow by using her brother’s conviction for child molestation. As with him trying to compare her marriages to older men (whom she had very good relationships after the divorces) to Mr. Allen’s disgraceful actions with Ms.Previn, this, too, falls flat. Let’s address two points. One, her brother, John Farrow (not the director) is in prison for his crimes. Two, what does her brother's conviction have to do with Dylan? You did not see Ms. Farrow defending her brother. And it doesn't seem like they were very close. It was just another way to sully Ms. Farrow. As was his bringing up Ms. Farrow's support of Roman Polanski. Again, that is trying to divert attention from Dylan's claims to Mia Farrow and to make it about Mia Farrow. And, for the record, Woody Allen also supported Roman Polanski.

Another quote in Mr. Weide’s defense of Mr. Allen says, “To remind readers that the woman is recalling memories from the age of seven, when a six-month investigation characterized her as being “emotionally disturbed,” and making statements that were likely “coached or influenced by her mother,” takes a little more than 140 characters.” He keeps saying he doesn’t want to abuse Dylan but he keeps making these statements, which is pretty much slut-shaming. Again, the only people who have made these allegations were people who were either in Woody Allen’s employ or who were in awe of Mr. Allen. Basically ONE report. And it’s a highly questionable one, where the team tore up their notes and no one on the team would testify. They would only gave a deposition. And the leader of the team never interviewed the victim but HE wrote the report! And he later testified that he "made mistakes" about Dylan being "disturbed" and having a "thought disorder". So, the court couldn't really use the report. The courts had to disregard or give it very little weight because of these issues. The other psychologists who were treating the children were paid by Woody Allen. It was insane. The court-appointed psychologist had a much different view.

Mr. Weide also tries to cast aspersions on the Vanity Fair article by bringing up the fact that Roman Polanski sued them and won. Okay, Mr. Weide……do we believe for one minute that if there was one libelous sentence in that article, Mr. Allen wouldn’t have sued? Considering his actions in the custody hearing, I seriously doubt it. Again, when you can’t present the facts, baffle them with bullshit. I have backed my post up with facts. Can you say the same?

I want to reiterate, I am not a Mia Farrow fan.  Never have been.  Nor am I advocating anything like boycotting Mr. Allen's movies or having him arrested.  That's not what this piece is about.  I wrote this piece because  I think that we have been cruel to victims of abuse for too long and too many people refuse to take a stand on it when it comes to the famous, the wealth and the powerful.  It's tough enough to get convictions when you are an ordinary mortal.  But, when your  abuser is possibly a Woody Allen (or a Roman Polanski or an R. Kelly), your chances of getting justice sucks.  And their sycophants will help spread the smear and make you feel like dirt.  I believe that people need to get their morality right and defend the victims. Am I saying that victims should be taken at their word?  No.  Look at the evidence.  Not just at someone's version of the evidence, as is Mr. Weide's piece.  And, no, I cannot separate the man from his art.  That's moral relativism.  But, hey, if that's the only way you can sleep at night, so be it.  But, again, what would you do if it was YOUR DAUGHTER?  I just wonder if Robert Weide has a daughter.

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