It takes intestinal fortitude to stand against prevailing winds, and even more of that stuff to take exception with some on your side of the fence. With voices like Dana Harris, Alex Billington and Matt Zoller Seitz cheering the downfall of Birth.Movies.Death editor Devin Faraci, who yesterday announced his resignation over a barroom sexual assault that happened in 2004, Awards Daily‘s Sasha Stone, herself a one-time victim of sexual assault, has pushed back against the anti-Faraci contingent and — the thought!– voiced her own opinion according to her own values, judgments and experience.
Devin Faraci, Sasha Stone and Amy Nicholson during a recording of one of the Canon podcasts. [Date unknown.]
Stone is basically saying that whomever Faraci was 12 years ago and however vulgar or appalling his behavior was on this now-notorious night in question, he’s a better man than the Twitter mob is currently giving him credit for and has shown himself to be, in Sasha’s opinion, something of a woke feminist. Here are excepts from her 10.12 article:
“[So far] the press has continually left out one major aspect of this story. Maybe it doesn’t matter to you, but it certainly matters to me, and that is Faraci’s advocacy for women online, specifically women at the center of the 2014 Gamergate controversy, the Ghostbusters controversy and the need for more representative depictions of women in film.
“Why it matters is that there is no one in fanboy film culture to take Faraci’s place, to take on that fight because it’s too hard. So perhaps there is some kind of justice on one end, but it comes with a price.
“It’s ironic that the one former fanboy blogger who spent many recent years a transformed person will no longer be contributing to the ongoing debate about women representation in video games and superhero/fanboy film culture because of sexual assault allegations online. Fanboy culture is not exactly known for embracing feminism. That needed to be challenged and destroyed. Faraci was on the way to doing that. Only someone of Devin’s stature could have. He was one of them [but] he stopped being one of them, even if eventually his past caught up with him.
“No one covering this story, not Dana Harris at Indiewire, not Dustin Rowles at Pajiba and not Seth Abramovitch at The Hollywood Reporter has noted that Faraci’s loss is a major blow towards this fight to undo the damage fanboy culture has wrought on women. Maybe they don’t think it matters. Maybe to you reading this it doesn’t. Maybe you think he made no impact at all, but I can tell you this much — there is a massive population of fanboys who are cheering right now that there is no longer anyone who is going to take them to task for their stream of shit against women.
“Whatever it was that made Devin change, whatever happened to him to cause him to shift his perspective and get on a different side, it made a huge difference in how people talked about women in that culture.
“No woman should have to live with the trauma of Trump’s behavior, and no woman should ever be violated like the girl who suffered abuse that night with Devin Faraci. She absolutely has the right to say it out loud and in public. Any woman who’s been mistreated that way has ever right to speak up. Though I have been sexually assaulted in my life, there’s only one person I’d really love to humiliate publicly. In my case, it was an ex-boyfriend, not an acquaintance who assaulted me, but because what he did was such a violation of trust, it did real damage to me and my daughter. If I ever get that chance you can bet I will take it. I do understand where she’s coming from and I applaud her for being so brave.
“So, having been there myself, the last thing I would ever do is in any way is blame the victim. I’m fully aware that those who choose to come forward have every right to do so, and hopefully it will give them some relief. Devin’s apology was instantaneous: ‘I can only believe you and beg forgiveness for having been so vile.’ Then he disappeared immediately, shutting down his entire online presence. I believe that it is this woman and this woman alone who has the power to forgive him. (And any others whom he might have abused.) Hopefully Devin will spend time working through this, perhaps in therapy, and find a way to make it up to the women he hurt.
“Whatever it was that made Devin’s attitudes and behavior change online, and no matter how much effort he’s devoted to focusing on women — on filmmaking equality, on diversity, on being less of an asshole — his fellow bloggers, men and women alike, aren’t forgiving him for his past actions any time soon. They are prepared to brand him a rapist and as far as they’re concerned, that is that.
“I wish the women involved all the healing and respect they deserve. Perhaps Devin’s loss of his site, an ouster from the Los Angeles Film Critics and the end of ‘The Canon‘ podcast (or at least a hiatus) will make her feel better. Those who are celebrating ought to know that they are using women for their own secret vengeance. Whatever bad blood they have between themselves and Devin Faraci is between them and him. I also know the internet. I know the film blogging world. I know fanboy culture. Devin’s absence will make a big difference for women, and not in a good way.”