Published as Fifty Shades of Jian Ghomeshi by the Georgia Straight Online, March 3rd, 2015.
After an ongoing National discussion about sexual assault; after countless editorials and intense public scrutiny over Jian Ghomeshi and the Dalhousie Dentistry Gentlemen; after petitions were signed and outrage was hurled at the disgraced men that have disappointed us this year; millions of movie goers rushed to the theatres to make “Fifty Shades of Grey” the highest grossing R rated movie of all time.
Which blows my mind.
Because how we can say such things to people in public spaces, hiding behind computer screens and comment boxes, off with their heads! because of the horrible things they’ve done – and then go watch sexual assault on the big screen and call it cheap romance.
Fifty Shades of Grey is anything but cheap. It comes at a huge cost to our society when we glorify such morally bankrupt messages. The fact that E.J Williams novel was a best seller made my literary stomach ache. But the fact that it’s become a global blockbuster? Makes my heart ache.
And worst still, nobody seems to notice.
My opinions on Jian Ghomeshi and the Dalhousie Gentleman’s Club are only slightly less colourful than that of Fifty Shade of Grey. I too was shocked and disappointed by the abuse of power and the abuse of woman that came to light in our country this year. And rightfully so, our society has seen to it that both Ghomeshi and the DD12 will have justice to pay.
But what about the money that we pay – to the actors, the writer, the studio, the publishing house; in support of the exact same rubbish, that is the Fifty Shades of Grey? Don’t they all shed light on the same genuine concerns that we have of seemingly powerful men who use force and manipulation to violently prey on women? Why is the Hollywood version okay?
To me, the issue’s black & white.