“The Joy Of Watching Harvey Weinstein’s Perp Walk
There’s a delicious schadenfreude in seeing a powerful abuser finally held accountable.”
Schadenfreude: Pleasure derived from another person’s misfortune (German). Or French “love of cruelty,” 1888, from French sadisme. Or sadism (English).
Perp: Perpetrator of a crime.
Q. What kind of writer pairs the word ‘delicious’ with sex offender?
A. A pervert.
It’s inappropriate to eroticize or romanticize the slaughter or the cooking of animals, most recently done by Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe nicknamed Salt Bae – precisely because so much pain and suffering is inflicted during the commission of the murder of these animals.
It is equally inappropriate for writers to eroticize criminal behavior. To connect a sex offender with food or a highly exquisite experience is offending to all senses except perhaps the perverted among us – precisely because so much pain is inflicted during the commission of those crimes. Harming others by denying them their freedom to choose their own fate is neither delicious nor exquisite, whether you’re the accused, the accuser, a witness or a commentator after the fact.
HuffPost statement: “We, the people of the internet, were engaging in a collective act of schadenfreude, and it was delicious.”
HWH response: I don’t know who “we the people of the internet” refers to, but this internet user does not find any joy, perverse or otherwise, in any action surrounding the accusers of crimes or the apprehension and arrest of those accused. It might be better to work at changing the rotted parts of a culture, rather than contributing to the rot. That starts with the communicators of the world.
“Engaging in a collective act”? “The Joy Of Watching”? A writer need not match the perversity of the crime with perverse analogies. It doesn’t work. It’s cheap, irresponsible commentary. Maybe changing the rotted parts of writing culture should also be a priority. These victims don’t need to know how much pleasure ‘you the people of the internet’ derived from their hurtful experiences.