Lena Dunham Defends A 'Girls' Writer From Sexual Assault Allegations & The Internet Is Not Too Happy
It never really takes much for Lena Dunham to find herself in hot water on social media, but the Girls creator ended up being dragged to no end by Twitter users over the weekend, following her recent comments defending Girls writer Murray Miller against recent sexual assault allegations.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Miller has been accused of sexual assault by actor Aurora Perrineau. Miller denied the accusations through his attorney who told THR, "Mr. Miller categorically and vehemently denies Ms. Perrineau’s outrageous claims." The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department confirmed to THR that police are investigating the incident. (Bustle reached out to Miller's attorney, as well as reps for Perrineau, but did not receive an immediate response. Bustle also reached out to the sheriff's department for further comment.) The Wrap reportedly obtained a copy of a polygraph statement from Perrineau, where she recounts her side of the alleged incident in 2012. These claims include Perrineau allegedly waking up naked in Miller's bed, where he allegedly had intercourse with her without consent. (Miller's attorney told The Wrap that his legal team "gathered overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims.")
On Friday, Dunham and her Girls co-showrunner, Jenni Konner, released a statement to THR that basically defends Miller and appears to discredit Perrineau's allegation. Their statement reads:
As you could probably already imagine, this joint statement didn't really sit well with fans. (Bustle reached out to Dunham's reps about the backlash, but did not receive an immediate response.)
Lena Dunham in Aug 2017: women don’t lie about rape.— Megha Mohan (@meghamohan) November 18, 2017
Lena Dunham in Nov 2017: ...unless they’re accusing a friend of mine. pic.twitter.com/GxLHrHUBFr
Some fans were very quick to criticize Dunham's statement, citing a three-month-old tweet in which she claimed that women don't lie about being raped or sexually assaulted.
Apparently Lena Dunham is a huge supporter of women coming forward with sexual assault unless it’s someone she knows personally and has held her up and filled her world with love.— Tom & Lorenzo (@tomandlorenzo) November 18, 2017
She's also now being called a hypocrite for not believing Perrineau's claims, with many arguing this solely because the allegations are being made against her close friend.
Lena Dunham doesn't believe her white male friend raped her black female costar? Color me shocked. Almost like white feminism is really only about uplifting and supporting white women as they pursue their ultimate capitalistic goals of sharing the role with men as oppressors.— 🌲Merry Katmas🌲 (@kat_blaque) November 18, 2017
Other users are pointing out, once again, the apparent flaws in Dunham's definition of feminism.
Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner have spent so much time boasting about their feminist political commitments. Yet, all of their feminist righteousness goes out of the window as soon as their friend is accused. White women are an absolute trip. https://t.co/gRk10NHlt9— Evette Dionne 🤔 (@freeblackgirl) November 18, 2017
Gahtdamm. Lena Dunham’s legacy is creating new ways to be trash. What are we on now, 47? 48? https://t.co/lo9tIKL3pA— April (@ReignOfApril) November 18, 2017
This definitely isn't the first time Dunham's feminism has been questioned. The 31-year-old has been a polarizing figure for a few years now, with the main criticism being that her brand of feminism is "white feminism." While Dunham's tweet from August that's now being used against her proves that she's been one to speak out about sexual assault against women before, her and Konner's statement didn't really do much to help in this case.
I believe in a lot of things but the first tenet of my politics is to hold up the people who have held me up, who have filled my world with love.— 💎 Lena Dunham 💎 (@lenadunham) November 17, 2017
Though Dunham is right about there being a very small amount of men and women who falsely accuse others of sexual assault each year, that doesn't necessarily mean that she gets to pick and choose when an accusation is true and when it isn't, especially when it involves a black woman accusing her white, male friend.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673) or visit online.rainn.org.