Last Friday, news broke that Harvey Weinstein had finally been held accountable for some of his abhorrent actions after a New York judge charged him with rape and performing a criminal sex act on two different women, respectively. All around the globe, survivors and their supporters celebrated the moment –complete with footage of a handcuffed Weinstein doing his so-called "perp walk" –acknowledging that it was because they dared to fight that Weinstein would pay a price. But for Ashley Judd and Annabella Sciorra, Weinstein's bail package, which included a $1 million payment and an agreement to wear an electronic monitoring device, wasn't strong enough of a punishment for all of the pain and suffering the disgraced producer inflicted.
In an open letter published in Time magazine, Judd, one of the first women to come forward with allegations against Weinstein, said the former film mogul still hasn't gone far enough to shed his "toxic masculinity," noting that he pleaded "not guilty."
"I was hopeful Harvey would plead guilty, that his surrender was volitional, so that in addition to carving out a singular position of disgrace, he could come forward as the predator who walks out of shame onto a new path of humility, introspection, accountability and amends, thereby leading our men and country in the necessary and inexorable trajectory of restorative justice," the actress and activist wrote. "It seems that Harvey, though, will not be the person to do that, as he is pleading not guilty and still maintains, in the face of so many accusations that all sex was consensual."
Judd concluded her column with her hopes for the future, one in which truly repentant sexual predators do everything in their power to create a safer world for survivors.
"So as these current steps of justice in New York City unfold, and the system does its necessary and important thing, we still wait for an accused who can and will embody what the #metoo movement and our society needs and wants: someone who can navigate the duality of having aggressed and address their abuse of power with culpability and integrity ... the reformed must have been genuinely transformed, shedding layers of toxic masculinity, exiting the denial/apology tour and standing in a new and collective space where both the person is and the narrative are made whole and unified."
Fellow actress and survivor Annabella Sciorra, too, felt that Weinstein still has a lot more to do before she can feel vindicated for the decades of pain he caused her and dozens of others. In a series of tweets, Sciorra, who accused Weinstein of rape last fall, argued that his punishment was in no way suitable for his crime.
"The law finally caught up with Harvey Weinstein on Friday and charged him with multiple counts of rape and sexual assault. But nothing about that felt celebratory to me," she wrote on Saturday, adding that "the smirk on his face" made her feel "physically sick."
The smirk on his face as he was led out of the police station in cuffs made me physically sick. The public statement from his lawyer was intended only to denigrate all the brave women who came forward and spoke out against him.— Annabella Sciorra (@AnnabellSciorra) May 27, 2018
"And I got no relief from seeing this monster walk into court, then sneak out the back door after posting a million dollar bond," Sciorra continued. "All that says is, money buys VIP treatment in the justice system no matter how serious or violent the crimes ... If there was truly 'equal justice under the law', Harvey Weinstein would be behind bars in Rikers today, waiting for his own day in court, not free to roam New York, his other hunting ground, wearing an ankle bracelet."
Hopefully, this punishment, however seemingly insufficient, is the beginning of a long-awaited reckoning for Weinstein and the bevy of powerful predators like him.