Morgan Spurlock outs himself as a sexual abuser, says he’s ‘part of the problem’

Los Angeles Premiere of 'Vegas Baby'

I believe there are many men around the country who are quaking in their boots, wondering if they’re the next one to be “outed” as a sexual predator, a rapist, a serial sexual harasser, an abuser. I believe that there are other major figures in the media and political world yet to be named. I also believe there are high-profile predator celebrities yet to be named. I’m sure many of those men have gone to publicists and crisis managers and tried to figure out if there’s some way to “get ahead” of the inevitable tell-alls, lawsuits or criminal charges. I’m sure many of the crisis managers and publicists tell the men to get in front of the story by telling their side first and acknowledging that they are part of the problem. Which is how we got this: documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock has published a statement where he outs himself as a harasser and worse. He calls it “I Am Part of the Problem.” No sh-t Sherlock. Some of the main points:

He was accused of raping a girl in college: “When I was in college, a girl who I hooked up with on a one night stand accused me of rape. Not outright. There were no charges or investigations, but she wrote about the instance in a short story writing class and called me by name. A female friend who was in the class told be about it afterwards. I was floored. “That’s not what happened!” I told her. This wasn’t how I remembered it at all. In my mind, we’d been drinking all night and went back to my room. We began fooling around, she pushed me off, then we laid in the bed and talked and laughed some more, and then began fooling around again. We took off our clothes. She said she didn’t want to have sex, so we laid together, and talked, and kissed, and laughed, and then we started having sex. “Light Bright,” she said. “What?” “Light bright. That kids toy, that’s all I can see and think about,” she said … and then she started to cry. I didn’t know what to do. We stopped having sex and I rolled beside her. I tried to comfort her. To make her feel better. I thought I was doing ok, I believed she was feeling better. She believed she was raped. That’s why I’m part of the problem.

He sexually harassed a coworker & settled with her: “Then there was the time I settled a sexual harassment allegation at my office. This was around 8 years ago, and it wasn’t a gropy feely harassment. It was verbal, and it was just as bad. I would call my female assistant “hot pants” or “sex pants” when I was yelling to her from the other side of the office. Something I thought was funny at the time, but then realized I had completely demeaned and belittled her to a place of non-existence. So, when she decided to quit, she came to me and said if I didn’t pay her a settlement, she would tell everyone. Being who I was, it was the last thing I wanted, so of course, I paid. I paid for peace of mind. I paid for her silence and cooperation. Most of all, I paid so I could remain who I was. I am part of the problem.

He’s unfaithful: “And then there’s the infidelity. I have been unfaithful to every wife and girlfriend I have ever had. Over the years, I would look each of them in the eye and proclaim my love and then have sex with other people behind their backs. I hurt them. And I hate it. But it didn’t make me stop. The worst part is, I’m someone who consistently hurts those closest to me. From my wife, to my friends, to my family, to my partners & co-workers. I have helped create a world of disrespect through my own actions.

Why did he behave this way: “What caused me to act this way? Is it all ego? Or was it the sexual abuse I suffered as a boy and as a young man in my teens? Abuse that I only ever told to my first wife, for fear of being seen as weak or less than a man? Is it because my father left my mother when I was child? Or that she believed he never respected her, so that disrespect carried over into their son? Or is it because I’ve consistently been drinking since the age of 13? I haven’t been sober for more than a week in 30 years, something our society doesn’t shun or condemn but which only served to fill the emotional hole inside me and the daily depression I coped with. Depression we can’t talk about, because its wrong and makes you less of a person.

[From Spurlock’s Twitter]

Toxic male bullsh-t. Male fragility. A sexual predator wanting to be validated, wanting “credit” for telling his story before his victims told their stories. Here’s what you should think about: think about how you would have felt if the New York Times had published a article with interviews from the woman who accused him of raping her in college, and an interview with the coworker he sexually harassed, and the women he cheated on and lied to and was emotionally abusive to. Think about their side, what they felt like, what their stories might be, their narratives which will probably not be told now that he’s been so “brave” and outed himself.

For what it’s worth… a lot of people have sh-tty childhoods. A lot of people have sh-tty role models. A lot of people were abused as kids. I have to believe most of those people don’t grow up to be rapists, sexual assailants, sexual harassers and abusive douchebags.

2017 Turner Upfront

Photos courtesy of WENN.

 

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122 Responses to “Morgan Spurlock outs himself as a sexual abuser, says he’s ‘part of the problem’”

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  1. Luca76 says:

    He is gross but one thing I want to say. Trauma does beget trauma so it’s of use to our society to root that s*** out and address it sooner than later.Scientists are finding If a person has the psychopath gene or other predispositions to being an abuser than the environment that they are raised in matters so much more. That’s not an excuse it’s just a reality.

    • QueenB says:

      Exactly. Its gross when its used as a defense like he does here or some people were doing with Polanski. But its important to get to the root of it. In prison populations you also have a higher percentage of people with an abusive background.

    • Who ARE these people? says:

      Most abuse survivors do not go on to abuse. It’s not predictive in that sense. However, if you look at a population of abusers, they are more likely to have been abused. Two different things.

      It means there is a much larger population of survivors who go on to lead nonviolent, loving lives (with a lot of conviction) than there is a population of second-generation abusers.

      The misconception however is another factor inhibiting survivors from openly describing their experience.

      Weinstein seems psychopathic. Spurlock…ugh, maybe. In the larger sphere of child abuse, which is quite large, most abusers are not psychopathic and it is not a hereditary thing. This guy though…gross. I agree with Kaiser. No mercy.

    • MeowuiRose says:

      W O W…..He’s just so brave and strong and courageous. He’s opened his heart and soul for all to see. I can’t imagine how hard this is for him. How hard it is to speak out about HIS experience and how it made HIM feel and how HE thinks. Such a brave man. **applause, trumpets, confetti, a marching band is heard in the distance, the heavens part**

    • Nicole says:

      Its not a defense but it IS something to think about. Trauma does a lot to people especially sexual trauma. The stats are there and the skewed view of healthy sexual relationships is a huge sign of prior abuse.
      Does he get a pass here? No. He’s a rapist or in the very least an abuser who used power of women. But in treatment this would be something to focus on

    • noway says:

      People on here may not like this but the abused have a much higher chance of becoming the abuser, especially if it is never dealt with. We need to find a way to discuss this without diminishing either victim’s abuse.

      My problem with this is that his story does seem self serving, but are we only going to punish the one’s who admit their wrong doing, and the ones who outright lie and trash the victims get to keep their job and have little public problem, like Donald Trump. Should we want these guys to admit it or not?

      One part of his story did stick with me in a different way, I do think there are a lot of men who have demeaned women in the workplace and didn’t think they were doing anything wrong. It was accepted. They may have thought it was even flirty, and I think this conversation needs to be had too. Cause I don’t know about most of you, but I wasn’t raped, forced to view someone’s penis, but I was demeaned because I was woman.

    • HIDI says:

      i think that this is more on social ethics than predispositions themselves ,yes dat’s troof ,trauma dont BEGET TRAUMA , though ,social ethics change SLOWLY OVER TIME

  2. Nanny to the Rescue says:

    “A girl accused me of rape but I remember it differently.”
    Describes a rape.

    Brilliant.

    • SK says:

      Yup!! This is really common. A lot of men will admit to rape and sexual assault openly if you don’t call it by those names. If you describe the behaviour or they do it is very clear that they are indeed rapists but they don’t see themselves that way because to them a rapist is an evil guy in the bushes or something like that. They have done a lot of studies like this in American universities and schools.

    • PPP says:

      “She said she didn’t want to have sex, so we laid together, and talked, and kissed, and laughed, and then we started having sex.”

      I mean if that’s how you remember it, buddy, that sounds pretty much like rape. Only change “We started having sex” to “I started having sex with her.” This is the most common way guys don’t understand consent. A girl lays out a “no,” the guy respects it for a few minutes, then tries the exact move she said “no” to.

  3. grabbyhands says:

    I’m part of the problem, but the important thing is here are all the reasons it isn’t my fault and really, even though I did stuff and I shouldn’t have and it was bad and stuff, I’m going to make sure to infer how these women that I admit to injuring were just the tiniest bit complicit in their own abuse or how they tried to profit from it.

    But I swear I’m a good guy. Also, something big is probably coming so I figured I’d try and beat it to the punch with my sh*tty little “explanation”.

  4. neelyo says:

    He doesn’t mention children, I’ll be pissed if he has kids. I don’t even know why, but that was my first thought. Maybe because he just sounds so gross and the whole thing reads like an excuse for all of his bad behavior: past, present AND future. What a dick.

  5. laulau says:

    Of course a lot of people who have bad childhoods don’t become abusive but a large number of abusers were themselves abused. While I don’t think anyone’s past can indemnify their actions I do think it’s important to understand the chain of events that occurs in some people because it has been proven that therapy and dealing with feelings of shame can lessen abusive behavior.

    He really does seem opportunistic and I don’t think his career should survive this.

    • Who ARE these people? says:

      Thanks for all your points!

    • Skoochy says:

      I can understand insofar as having your own boundaries ignored, consent invalidated and wellbeing flat out ignored during your formative years would result in growing up with a sense that those things don’t matter. But his attempt at correlating being abused with becoming an abuser is overall problematic. Abuse survivors do not need the added strain of worrying about perpetuating the crimes committed against them. I feel if he was sincere about his apology he would have omitted that fact for the sake of other abused kids.

      That being said, far be it for me to say how an abuse survivor should or shouldn’t vocalise their experiences. Catch 22?

  6. SK says:

    Yes I have always known that my rapist never saw himself that way. I’m sure he believed he had “talked me into it” even though I had cried and tried to fight him off and repeatedly told him I had my period and a tampon in and not today (I was a virgin and had just had an operation too so I was not in a great state). I struggled and cried and he stopped, aghast and told me he would NEVER do that to me and invoked “trust” to calm me down and get me to relax – because I’d known him all my life and he promised he wouldn’t keep trying and I had to trust him because he was so crazy about me. “Please don’t be upset. I would never do that to you.” The second I relaxed (because I trusted him and he promised me) he shoved his penis in me and in shock I froze. I know 100% that he saw that as me changing my mind or something even though what he did caused enormous emotional and psychological damage for about 5 years and really messed up my ability to trust people and also my ability to be in healthy relationships for a long time. If I explained it to him, no doubt he would be outraged and think I was insane even though I at no point gave consent and repeatedly and clearly denied him consent. This is an issue. Men and boys who don’t understand how consent works. Who twist things in their heads so it works out the way they want it to. Who don’t understand that enthusiastic consent and participation from the other party is the only way they should be having sex.

    • Peeking in says:

      So sorry you were put through that, SK.

    • Nanny to the Rescue says:

      I’m so, SO sorry that this happened to you.

      You reminded me of something else: You gave him gazillion reasons why not – operation, period, tampons, virgin etc. That’s what we do (I have done it too) because we try to justify to these idiots that we don’t want to have sex, while a simple “no (no need to explain)” should suffice.

      • SK says:

        Thank you Peeking and Nanny to the Rescue for your lovely support! I am honestly fine. This was half a lifetime ago now. It made me a strong advocate for rape survivors and an even bigger feminist. For the last 12 years or so this event in my life has ceased to effect me negatively other than a bit of sadness that it happened to me. I have actually taught a lot of well-meaning but entirely ignorant men a lot about rape, sexual assault, consent, the reactions of victims etc. by using this personal story of mine (as well as other things that have happened to me and then backed up by stats, figures, etc.). I think it has been very effective. So many men really just do not get it and I think this personal approach from someone they know really helps.

        As you say Nanny, a simple “no” should be all we need. Excuses and reasons should not be needed. I also find myself telling people: I wasn’t drunk, it was 10am, no one was under the influence, I was a virgin, I had my period, I had a tampon in, I was weak from an operation (indeed I was on crutches at the time), I fought, I cried, etc etc etc. It should be enough just to tell people you were raped but you have to protect/defend yourself because when you say that people are immediately sceptical. Maybe you were drunk and led him on, maybe you just regretted it afterwards, maybe you are just being hysterical… etc etc etc. They all want a perfect victim and even then don’t believe you. I told my story once in great detail in the comments of an article with the running list of Cosby victims when people were struggling to understand why victims react the way they do afterwards and had some vile man saying things like: sure you probably spread your legs for him and were grinding against him (and more, much worse in detail that really triggered me in a way I had not been for years). There is so much that needs to change in the way we think about, talk about and understand rape.

    • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

      @SK, this is beyond words. Sorry you went through that. Don’t allow the rape ruin your life.

    • INeedANap says:

      I am so sorry you went through that.

      And you’re right — that many rapists don’t see themselves that way. Everyone thinks they’re the good guy and will jump through hoops to justify their behavior (like Spurlock above). Our culture does not incentivize men to understand consent because that would require them to think about women as more than a life support system for t&a.

      Big hugs, SK.

    • ms says:

      I’m sorry. I’ve been there, too. My “friend” told her boyfriend to molest me while I was on the verge of a stress induced mental breakdown. I said no and pushed him away several times. Afterward, he acted like I was disgusting. The way he tells it, “we were both there.” Yeah, I was there pushing you away and you did whatever you wanted to. Now he gets credit on social media for being so vocal about consent and sexual assault. There is no connection in his mind to what he did to me. It makes me sick to see my abuser get praised for being so feminist and woke when I know who he really is (maybe he’s grown since then, I don’t know, but I sure as hell never got an acknowledgment or an apology for his predatory behavior).

    • M&M says:

      Wow.
      I am so sorry. That is such a terrible thing to go through but you seem like you are on the other side of it and that is incredible. Thank you for sharing.
      I hope to get there someday.
      I was assaulted by someone I thought was a close friend. I thought I had imagined it, that I was drunk and I didn’t remember clearly.
      Last year we were hanging out and he decided to bring up “our moment” together. I froze.
      It did happen. It was true.
      I smacked both sides of his face and I cursed him out. We still run in the same circles even though I have made it known I will not be somewhere if he is there.
      I’ve gone to therapy and cried a lot and been very angry.
      Our moment together? You took advantage of me while I was drunk you pervert.
      It’s literally the hardest thing I have ever faced.

      • Venus says:

        Oh, M&M, that’s awful. I’m so sorry.

      • Cannibell says:

        To all of you who’ve described these horrid things – add me to the “I’m so sorry you had to go through something as traumatic and horrible” chorus, and SK, I totally understand what you’re saying. I teach Family Education for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and when the woman who did our training class talked about her experiences with her severely mentally ill son and its impact on their family, she said “I don’t live here.”

        I’m glad you were able to get to a point where you don’t live there, but are able to visit when necessary. And if there was ever a necessary moment to do these kinds of visits, it’s now for sure.

  7. Chef Grace says:

    Oh so much bullshit. I was molested by my mother. I was raped by a guy I was infatuated with in college. My mother was a drunk. The guy was a drug user. No excuses for either of them.
    My trauma did not beget trauma. I raised two children in a loving environment. I never wanted them to feel anything but safe.
    But my son is an alcoholic who is an emotional and verbal abuser. I have no clue why or how.

    • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

      @Chef Grace. That’s awful. No excuses for what they did but aren’t they poor excuses for human beings. Who knows, maybe your son experienced something that led him to this situation but he won’t share why. He’s hurting himself too in the process, maybe there is a way for him to see that. But you don’t deserve this.

    • milla says:

      Genetics… sorry that your son is giving you grief. But you are brave and sharp.

    • ms says:

      Growing up in an abusive environment normalizes behavior It definitely does not mean you will turn into an abuser. LIkewise, the best parents can have children who break every expectation and standard of respect and love you set for them, because they are sentient beings. I hope your son is getting help.

    • Domino says:

      there is a very good book and a meeting group called adult children of alcoholics, which describes how even if we ourselves are not alcoholic, or even if it was our grandparents who were alcoholic, families change considerably to suit the person with alcoholism or other substance use disorder.

      I think the trauma takes several generations to break, is what the book says. I in no way am assigning blame to anyone – not your mom or you or your son, Chef Grace. But the generational affects are real. When my friend learned about adult children of alcoholics, it was because her brother became involved with heroin and it helped her unravel that it was generations before her who had been suffering and still continued to suffer, because of things like emotional incest, codependency, etc.

      I wish you and your family the best and am sorry you are going through your son’s alcoholism.

  8. Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

    So he belittles the producer by stating that she blackmailed him? And the comment on the toy as well, it’s not OK. A PoS all the way. PoS. He is awful.

  9. SM says:

    “I shouted hot pants across the office” and then “I did not want anyone to know” – something is not right and this guy is shady as fuck. It seems to me is trying to minimize the damaging actions he did. We will have to wait and see how different (and much more scary) the stories of his victims will be. And they most definitely will be

  10. kNY says:

    He sounds like a nightmare. He clearly wanted to get ahead of this before someone was going to talk. He wanted to get the “I’m an abused alcoholic” story out there in the hopes of getting “credit” for unmasking his awfulness before he was forced to.

  11. Patricia says:

    Asshole. And like a poster described above, the man who raped me also would never think he was a rapist. We were in a long relationship and it was all just fun and games, it was a turn on for him that I was saying no for once, we were drunk, I never brought it up again.
    But yes he raped me and hurt me and scared me and honestly I’ll never forget it and always have the trauma of it. And the trauma of staying with him anyway, of never feeling like I could tell him what he did was wrong because “he’s not that kind of guy” and his fragile ego couldn’t handle hearing that he had raped his own girlfriend.

  12. Giulia says:

    Yeah, ok, Slick. He left something out of his attempt at soul-cleansing confession – he’s an effing manipulator and narcissist.

  13. Tan says:

    He got a tip that women are going to come forwars against him and its his damage control, as well as blaming the victim

    It was consensual but she is bandwagoning ans calling it rape

    In the process generating wow and awesome from dude bros

  14. lara says:

    The last part destroyed his statement for me.
    I found the first segment pretty good, at least he aknowled, that he raped her, instead of blaming her or pretending it was consensual. I think it was the first time I heard a man admiting, that he raped a woman.
    I did not read the second part as her blackmailing him, but rather him buying silence.
    But the last part takes everything back and shifts the blame. Abuse and depression does not make a rapist!

    I do not agree, that the women should have told their story first and the chance is take from them. They will be belived now, and, if they want to go public, will (hopefully) get less backlash.

    • KBB says:

      He never acknowledged raping her, he said “she believed she was raped.”

      His “confession” is actually him trying to explain why it wasn’t rape. The fact that it was obviously rape because she pushed him off AND said no seems to be completely lost on him. They were laughing and kissing in between so she must have changed her mind in three minutes and wanted to sleep with him!

      • lara says:

        Ok, I read what I wanted to read.
        Maybe because I have ben hoping for years that my ex would acknowlege, that he did something wrong, insted of still running around and telling everybody I am mentally ill and delusional.
        For me the public humiliation was almost as bad as being raped and beaten.

  15. Margo S. says:

    I am sickened by what he did to that girl in college. She kept saying no and he just kept trying. Pig.

    This is what my mom told my brother growing up. “I don’t care if she goes, ‘yes I want to. Yes I’m ready. Yes yes yes.’ doesn’t matter if she says it for hours. If you start doing it and she says no, you stop. You love back, you give her space. Women are allowed to change their minds whenever they want.”

  16. Sky says:

    He basically turned himself in to a victims, who can not be judged for raping women. Also a brave hero for speaking out about it before his victims could exposed him.

    I just can’t with this BS.

  17. Chaine says:

    Yuck. What next from him, a cleverly titled documentary where he interviews lots of dudes mansplaining sexual harassment to us? This guy did one documentary twenty years ago about how eating McDonald’s made him gain weight, and he’s been riding high on that ever since, classic white male privilege.

  18. Angela82 says:

    Ok I wasn’t expecting anything good from a man admitting years of sexual harassment and abuse but I didn’t expect it to be this bad. I guess I was naive. What a complete a$$hole.

    ETA: isn’t this is the guy who got famous from eating too much McDonalds? It cracks me up (not really) that the point of the film was if he continued on he would be dead at a young age. Now we have a POTUS with same, possibly even worse diet, and hes 71. :-/

  19. Kitten says:

    “What caused me to act this way? Is it all ego? Or was it the sexual abuse I suffered as a boy and as a young man in my teens? Abuse that I only ever told to my first wife, for fear of being seen as weak or less than a man? Is it because my father left my mother when I was child? Or that she believed he never respected her, so that disrespect carried over into their son? Or is it because I’ve consistently been drinking since the age of 13? I haven’t been sober for more than a week in 30 years, something our society doesn’t shun or condemn but which only served to fill the emotional hole inside me and the daily depression I coped with. Depression we can’t talk about, because its wrong and makes you less of a person.”

    Yeah I’m going to go with (C) You are a selfish dickbag who has no respect for women.

    • Natalie S says:

      He’s not sorry at all, is he? Just scared and hoping to control the narrative. People who wanted to keep liking Louis CK praised him for admitting to some of what he did. So clever predators like Spurlock are trying to go for what works in getting ahead of repercussions for their own behavior.

  20. LOL says:

    So people are supposed to feel sorry for him and his pain?!
    Like how we are supposed to feel sorry for the other victims like Casey affleck, johnny depp, poor wood Allen and the small like rapist Polanski

  21. Jasmine says:

    What he’s done is wrong BUT, men his age and older were encouraged toward this behavior. We do better when we know better. Im not sure why we’ve ever been viewed or treated as less but it was/is reality for decades. At least, at least he know the error in his ways and may attempt to be a better man from here on out. One would hope anyway

  22. Natalie S says:

    This is the Harvey Weinstein defense. “I need help guys.” Louis CK did it better.

  23. GoesTo11 says:

    I have a feeling that abusers are going to start using “cycle of abuse” as an excuse. “I was victimized so I can’t help but to victimize others.” I understand that’s a possibility, but I really fear that people are going to use it an an out. For example, a transwoman named Cherno Biko wrote a disgusting Medium article about how she raped and tried to forcibly impregnate a trans man. Her excuse was cycle of abuse. Her career has been unscathed, she spoke at the Women’s March (oh the irony) and was on the cover of Time Magazine.

    ***Please don’t use this horrifying event to judge the trans community***

    I think abuse, especially child abuse, is far more common than we want to admit to ourselves, but I really don’t think it should be a valid excuse.

  24. Bridget says:

    Consequences, even if they are not legal, are coming Morgan Spurlock’s way. I am not going to celebrate him for coming forward as a part of the problem, but I’m also aware that any man that admits to coming forward is going to have a similarly horrifying story. Hasn’t this been the point of #metoo? To get men to finally realize that the way they’ve been behaving is NOT okay, to see that they’ve been a part of the problem?

    The problem is epidemic. Men know that they shouldn’t jump a woman in an alley and rape her. But there’s been a message out there for years that if a woman says “no”, if you REALLY like her you need to try to win her over so she can see how much you love her. This one sided, possessive narrative when it comes to women and their bodies. How many stories do we hear like this? Women who are hanging out with a ‘friend’ who makes a move and woman says “no” but still wants to hang out – he then keeps trying to make moves, and sometimes moving into assault or rape (“I just like you so much” “you were still hanging out with me, I thought you wanted it”). This idea of the aggrieved “nice guy” pining in the wings who’s SUPPOSED to be the overlooked romantic hero (at least from every movie and TV show we’re given) and the woman who MUST change her mind because that’s how it goes for the nice guy. Or how about the guy who meets a girl in a bar and buys her drinks? “I spent X number of dollars on you, I at least deserve (blank)”. Or how about just plain possessive “I really like you, therefore you should like me back and want to do (blank)”.

    But you know what? You’re not the nice guy waiting in the wings. They’re not the hero in our own stories – they’re the villains in ours. No one is owed our bodies. Morgan Spurlock is not the only man with a story like this.

    • Skoochy says:

      Yes!! Oh my god, yes. I think this is a huge part of the problem, this pop culture normalisation of ‘winning her over’, ‘getting out of the friendzone’, etc.

      Fun idea! When a woman says no, maybe, just maybe, bare with me here, she isn’t a feeble minded little twit who just needs more convincing. Maybe she knew damn well from the second you opened your mouth what her relationship with you was going to be. And maybe, just maybe, men need to just deal with that.

  25. tealily says:

    Honest question here: what do we want from these men? How can men who have done these things make it better? It seems to me that admitting that they did these things is step one, but it does seem self-serving somehow as well. I don’t have an answer.

    • starkiller says:

      Well, I can’t speak for everyone, but as for what I want from them, I want them to stop raping and sexually assaulting women. They can make it better by stopping their rape and sexual assault of women.

      • tealily says:

        Does that make it better? Just stopping? Do we know that he hasn’t stopped?

      • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

        @tealily: I have never been raped – assaulted, yes, but even so, there is nothing men who committed assault, rape, harassment, can do to make it better. On the other hand, PUNISHMENT of offenders, THAT would “make it better”.

        Stopping rape and sexual assault as @starkiller says, is A MUST.

      • tealily says:

        @Pumpkin, absolutely. Punishment needs to occur, but that’s not something these men can do themselves. They can admit what they’ve done and they can stop their behavior. They can and should apologize (notably, the word “sorry” does not seem to appear in Spurlock’s statement), but I really can’t think of anything they can actually do to fix this.

    • savu says:

      Tealily, I’m with you. Don’t we want them to take responsibility? But man it sucks that he gets to have the “first word” about it.

      I also think understanding someone’s childhood should mean something. Not everything. NOT an excuse. But does it help you understand why he didn’t quite “get” consent, especially as a young man? Unfortunately I think a lot of men 20 years ago and beyond weren’t taught about consent, and I could see how that gets even more warped through abuse. I was physically and emotionally abused by my mother, and it took me YEARS of therapy to stop destructive behavior toward myself and others that I didn’t quite understand. I still even feel the urge to hurt others verbally sometimes, like instinct. I can’t imagine how hard it jacks up your life and worldview to be a victim and feel so much shame you never tell anyone and never seek help. That applies to him AND his own victims. I guess I can empathize, but this is also a man who didn’t see ON HIS OWN that he was abusing his relationships and could’ve sought (and paid for) help. So you know you’re being a shitty person? TRY TO CHANGE IT. I don’t know. I just think it’s all complex.

      • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

        @savu: sorry it happened to you.

        I do have a problem with this – not with you!: “this is also a man who didn’t see ON HIS OWN that he was abusing his relationships and could’ve sought (and paid for) help.”

        I REFUSE to believe this. I see this as an attempt to appear sympathetic. His ”curated” version of the stories. There is no excuse, period.

      • savu says:

        @pumpkin maybe I wasn’t clear enough – I’m trying to say that he had control of his actions. He had control of what he did to others. He had control of who he is and how he treats people. He could have tried to change or sought help. So you had a pattern ingrained into you. While I can empathize with how that feels, I also know it’s possible to a) not succumb to it and b) change how you think and feel by acknowledging you were taught wrong (and years and years of therapy).

      • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

        @savu: my apologies, I didn’t read your comment properly! Sorry about that!

      • tealily says:

        @savu, yes I have empathy for his experience too, but I do wonder if it is actually helpful to include that background in this statement. It makes the whole thing feel less about accountability and more about getting the “first word,” as you say.

    • Domino says:

      I think I would want laws for victims, and in the work place a sexual harassment ombudsman; a bigger role and more funding for the EEOC (as it is currently overwhelmed) plus unions for women so that when they come forward we believe them and they have an organization supporting them; and then for Morgan Spurlock, Ben Affleck, Mario Batali, Charlie Rose, Matt Lauer etc to donate to RAINN and also to pay for the backlogged rape kits. It should be a sizeable percentage of any man’s income and time to volunteer for rape hotlines, and to pay for back logged rape kits.

      Finally, all adult men need to do community service workshops for young men – explaining what is consent, what are ways in which advertisements tell us women are worth less, talking about ways in which women have made huge accomplishments and contributions to the world, and how we show ANY Person – whatever their gender – respect, empathy and compassion.

      Change and challenge in these workshops what it means to be a ‘man’ – and start them early – in preK, Kindergarten, elementary school, etc.

      Much like I think Coates of the Atlantic says that he would want white persons to discuss racism among themselves, women need men to discuss the issues of rape, assault, jokes, etc amongst men. Men need to talk to other men about women are going through amongst themselves.

    • noway says:

      I get your issue, but he isn’t really a great example, because this does seem like he is trying to dodge a pr bullet. It just doesn’t seem like real contrition, but I do think there are many men who haven’t raped or assaulted women, but harassed them some a lot some a little and the culture just let it go. I would like to hear from some of them, and what they think now, but I completely understand why they don’t speak up now though.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I don’t want confessionals about past actions unless it is directed to the person who has been hurt.

      The counselor my husband and I go to has been invaluable. We learned a lot about the social construct of masculinity and how it is based on the dominance of women.
      They must diminish women and “weaker feminine” men and do subtle things to gain even a tiny bit of dominance in varying degrees and situations.
      My father in law does this by showering all his affection and tenderness for women, often subordinate and favoring his granddaughters. Men can’t be emotional or cry or be weak because that makes them less of a man in his view.
      He made my husband take boxing lessons in a tough gym, in a rough neighborhood as a boy and into his teens to toughen him up. From 9 he made him work in his business so he wouldn’t be a weakling. Lots of criticism and disgust if he cried or showed weakness. I learned just now why my husband is always quiet, very formal and he seethes inside after we spend long periods of time with him. He calls him Sir and affection is a handshake, and my husband always wears traditional clothes when we visit or go to dinner to with his parents. He minimized and made convincing jokes out of it, but it hurts. Real men don’t hurt, and they don’t cry.

      One way to change our culture is to change the way we parent our sons and change the way fathers love their sons. We can’t change the men if they don’t want to change but they need to be challenged. Constantly.

      Another example. His father always gives me a check when I see him for the children, and he gives me lavish gifts. It doesn’t matter that my husband is capable and successful on his own. He still has to be dominant and establish that fact down to if I don’t cash the checks, his accountant calls me. Even THAT is dominance. He doesn’t call but has a man who works FOR him do it. ?? I donate them, it feels wrong so let them accomplish some good elsewhere.

      He is behaving as our culture says an excellent strong man should, and society rewards him for it. My mother in law is a formidable woman, his equal partner in all things and he respects her. He would never harass or behave less than what he calls “gentlemanly” but the mindset is entrenched, and it continues. He isn’t a bad person, but he is a product of our toxic culture.

      If a man is malignant or narcissistic, he takes it much further and abuses women, people. He bullies, rapes, destroys, cheats and preys because he thinks it is his right. Society rewards him, and other men emulate him because they see that man as powerful and real man. Some men fall in between these and many who are superior, but it takes work for them to change.

      • tealily says:

        Yes, maybe that’s what my issue is with this statement. I absolutely want a man to own up to and admit his actions, but this is not about the people he hurt, it is about himself. As I noted above, there is no apology in there anywhere. Stating these things doesn’t fix them. Maybe nothing can, but I like what you’re saying. It’s more about being a part of changing the system that makes some men think this behavior is acceptable or even expected.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      They can turn themselves into the police and confess to their crimes in the appropriate channel, not “confess” through the media. Then the police can help them check into the nearest prison to serve their time. That’s what they can do. If there are therapies that can help, go for it. But you can do therapy while being removed from access to victims.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Paying for therapy and any other reparations to their victims – also good. Victims have to pay out of their own pockets otherwise, and there’s also lost time, energy and professional advancement.

      • tealily says:

        Good call. I like these nice, practical steps.

      • Cannibell says:

        Yes. I did some writing on my own about this, but am not about to talk about my own stuff on someone else’s blog. What I will say is that I think that for every situation, there’s a slightly different path toward resolution and healing – if such a thing is possible. The one universal is genuine remorse, which is why Spurlock’s statement is hitting so many of us the way it is – it feels manipulative and self-serving.

        I vote for some sort of Truth and Reconciliation/Restorative Justice framework for abusers and targets. I don’t know what it looks like or how it works, but there you have it.

  26. Miss M says:

    Mr. Spurlock, you have behaved terribly in every aspect of your life.
    However, I do appreciate you are taking the first steps to hopefully become a better person.
    Acknowledging your wrong behavior is the beginning for the right path.
    But I hope you realize in order to right your wrongs you need to take full responsibility for your actions, even if you were wronged by people that should have nurtured and protected you.
    This is your chance to make a change for the better. Lead by example.

  27. Aerohead21 says:

    I was about to say, good for him. And then I read the last part full of excuses and I vomited in my mouth a bit…there’s the BUTT it’s not my fault.

  28. gatorbait says:

    I know the feeling some of you are expressing in your stories. My boyfriend at 19 anally raped me. We were in the “doggy style” position and he switched from my vagina to my butt without asking and without lube and without taking his time. It felt like I’d been stabbed. When I started crying and pulling forward to get him off of me he put his hand on my head and shoved my face into a pillow to muffle the noise. He’d probably tell you we were having kinky wild sex. It didn’t feel kinky or wild to me. It was painful and humiliating. This is seriously an epidemic and I’m starting to doubt the statistics of how many women are rape victims. I know not ONE woman who hasn’t been raped or abused sexually in some way. Even just a butt grab. Men don’t want to accept how humiliating this is for us. Humanizing us would be too much for them. I wish I’d been brave enough and smart enough to realize that what he did could have actionable consequences. I just felt like a dirty whore and kept my mouth shut and, shamefully, stayed with him another 6 months.

  29. Notsoanonymous says:

    When I read that account of rape, I was moved to tears. The woman describing the light bright immediately made me think she had experienced childhood sexual abuse and was relieving that during her rape as well. Obviously I’m speculating, but it certainly makes sense.

    As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse myself, and having experienced some really shady alcohol infused encounters in my 20s which don’t fit the ‘perfect victim’ narrative… it just hits me as something so similar to my own life.

    He’s a monster.

  30. NotSoSocialButterfly says:

    Nothing in his multiple disclosures makes his, “I’m not a rapist, really!” claim even remotely more believable.

  31. Harryg says:

    Oh, wow. I have always liked his CNN series. Disappointing.

  32. WootWoot says:

    Look. We are going to have to find a way, as a society, through this terrible time. Part of the messiness is folks (men & women) trying to figure out the best way to respond to other’s stories of abuse….especially if you are the abuser in said story.

    Was this a perfect response? Of course not. But to immediately disregard everything he says as self-serving doesn’t distinguish this response from the responses that are couched as outright denials. In other words – if I had not read his actual statement, but had just read the author’s take (as well as almost all of the comments), I would not be able to distinguish what he said vs. a statement that simply read “this didn’t happen, I am totally innocent, #fakenews”.

    This opinion doesn’t make me less of a feminist, and it sure as hell doesn’t erase my past as a survivor of sexual abuse & harassment. I just want the #metoo movement to help us find, as a society, a new normal that doesn’t include this type of behavior. Attacking every person who ever committed (or was accused) of the crimes of harassment or abuse unilaterally, no matter what they say or how they say it, doesn’t ring (to me) like the right path to that new normal.

    My $0.02 fwiw

  33. Sandra says:

    After thinking about it, I don’t have a problem with his comments. To me, he was saying ‘I tried, then I tried again, then I tried again’, and thought that was okay. He now realizes that was not okay. I do believe that when people hear the word ‘rapist’ they think of being jumped in an alley and fighting for your life, not of something that is consensual up to a point (where you only go so far with the touching etc). I think the reality he described is probably a lot of men’s reality, and we have to be willing to hear it so they can be educated differently. Most people equate the word ‘rape’ with scary violence, not like what he described. He now has a context for why it was wrong, and that’s good. We have to be willing to hear this if we want to change it. Maybe he’s getting out ahead of something and maybe he isn’t, but both of the incidents he described sound pretty darned common if you ask me. If he’s willing to stand up and say he did the common thing, then I say we need to hear it, as do other men, so we can all recognize it and do better. I know I’ll be dragged for this, but I for one appreciate hearing his perspective. If we don’t hear those perspectives we can’t change them.

    • j says:

      “trying” again and again after a woman says no describes rape. you’re saying a lot of men’s reality involves rape and we need to receive it nicely in order to reeducate them. i’m not responsible for reeducating rapists and listening politely while they tell their rape stories so THEY don’t become reactive. i have no interest in understanding why men rape women and i don’t need to understand where they’re coming from to vocally and loudly tell them it’s not ok.

    • Danielle says:

      Sandra,
      I agree with you. I think we need to acknowledge how common this thinking is. Until we acknowledge our problematic culture and address it, things can’t really change.

  34. cld says:

    I went to college with his niece and trust me…his whole family is messed up! Not an excuse at all either!

  35. konspiracytheory says:

    Not shocked, lol. A good friend of mine had a job for years where he interacted with celebrities (both big and small). He always says that the absolute best celebrities to work with were Bowie and Iman, and the bottom of the barrel was this guy.

  36. Kristen says:

    I give him credit for coming clean.
    He seems to have insight into some of the contributing factors to his behavior.

    • gatorbait says:

      I wouldn’t give a murderer credit for coming clean so I won’t be giving it to him. I mean, more power to him for the self reflection but that’s the bare minimum of what one should do in life. One should self reflect and make changes. He’s admitted to doing this for 30 years (alcoholism leading into abuse). He’s had plenty of time to see the error of his ways and make changes. The ONLY reason he is doing this is to get ahead of the women coming out to tell the stories they have of him. Honestly, I find that sick too. He took their stories and told them and made them his. If I was the woman who the “lite brite” comment came from I’d be a shell today breaking down overly him hearing cavalierly telling my story as though it’s his to tell.

  37. I’m With The Band says:

    Talks like a classic sociopath. Knows exactly what he’s doing to people and says what he thinks people want to hear. If he really hated his behavior that much, he would have stopped a long time ago. He’s selfish and doesn’t care enough to stop. He has no empathy and probably sleeps well at night to boot.