There is something mysterious in the platform signed in favor of Gérard Depardieu by around fifty French cultural figures. As if, for those who had known him and did not want to see, it was a question of justifying their own blindness by claiming him. By demanding the presumption of innocence for the actor, it is ultimately their own naivety that they were asking us to forgive.
And besides, we would like to be lenient with them, to tell them: but of course, we do not blame you, you have seen nothing of its violence, its excesses, or you have seen but didn’t want or be able to do anything, but you weren’t the only ones. We simply would have liked them to have a word for the victims, for those who suffered, whose flesh was bruised, whose spirit and confidence were broken.
We would have liked those who thus claimed a man’s right to the presumption of innocence in the name of justice to also have a word to say that their idea of justice was not satisfied with the pursuit of a system of domination by powerful men over women in a position of professional inferiority. That the idea that by filing a complaint against a man was infringing on art itself was itself contradictory with the equality before justice that they were precisely demanding by evoking the presumption of innocence for the actor .
Impunity for the powerful
It is almost inevitable that a revolution as important in mentalities as that induced by #metoo brings with it a movement of fear, just as all historical revolutionary movements have provoked a nostalgia for an ancient time, one where the order of things, as shaky as it was, was not yet called into question. What the Germans call “Heile Welt”, and which could incorrectly be translated as perfect world or golden age. Because the unknown is scary and worrying. The old world is dying, the new has not yet been born, and in this chiaroscuro monsters emerge, as Gramsci says.
In all cases of violence against women, we have thus witnessed offensives to transform the executioners into victims, and thus delegitimize the words of women and victims. However, this is the first time that the far right has lurked behind this type of offensive to turn it into a real political fight.
Today, many signatories discover the real author of the petition, a thurifer from Zemmour, and are distancing themselves. A little late no doubt. But at least their naivety allows us to analyze the reasons which pushed the far right to make the defense of Depardieu its new fight.
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