Rose McGowan's Statement About Asia Argento & Anthony Bourdain Says There's No One To Blame In His Death
In the light of Anthony Bourdain's passing, Rose McGowan has a lot to say in defense of her friend Asia Argento. Rose McGowan's statement about Asia Argento and Anthony Bourdain says that there is no blame regarding his death by suicide. In her message, McGowan explains that she was with Argento during the time that she wrote it. In subsequent Twitter messages, she further clarified that her message was at the "behest of Asia" and released a note from Argento herself in which she said that she asked McGowan to "be [her] voice".
While McGowan touches upon how her friend is doing after the heartbreaking death, the statement also includes a particularly strong message about the idea of blame after experiencing a tragedy such as suicide. McGowan writes:
I know so many around the world thought of Anthony Bourdain as a friend and when a friend dies, it hurts. Many of these people who lost their "friend" are wanting to lash out and blame. You must not sink to that level.
The Charmed actor also notes that it could be sexist to blame Argento for Bourdain's death: "Do NOT do the sexist thing and burn a woman on the pyre of misplaced blame. Anthony’s internal war was his war, but now she’s been left on the battlefield to take the bullets."
She continues, "It is in no way fair or acceptable to blame her or anyone else, not even Anthony."
McGowan's statement comes days after Bourdain's passing, which CNN reported on June 8. As McGowan says in her statement, many around the world were affected by his death, as they felt as though they had lost a friend.
Following his death, there were some who tried to make sense of it by (unfairly) saying that Argento was the reason for Bourdain's action. Shortly after the news broke, TMZ published an article entitled, "Anthony Bourdain and Asia Argento Seemed Close Until This Week." In the article, they describe a "murky" situation and detail that the Italian actor was seen getting close with Hugo Clément, a French reporter. They also reported that, "something changed within the last few days" with the couple.
McGowan clarifies the status of Bourdain and Argento's relationship in her statement, so that there would be no more questions about any kind of falling out. She writes, "Anthony and Asia had a free relationship, they loved without borders of traditional relationships." Even without that clarification, there's no reason for any blame to be placed on Argento for any possible romantic troubles influencing this situation. As the Grindhouse star said, his tragic act was "his decision, not hers."
Following the news of Bourdain's passing, Argento released a statement via Twitter in which she said, in part, "He was my love, my rock, my protector. I am beyond devastated."
Instead of trying to place the blame on someone specific, McGowan urges everyone to "learn about mental illness, suicide, and depression." Ending her statement, she writes that she believes that Bourdain would want society to have a "collective discussion" about the issue of depression instead of one about assigning blame. She continues, "Blame is NOT a conversation, it is the shutting down of our collective growth." You can read McGowan's note in full below:
"Dear Fellow Humans,
Sitting across from me is the remarkable human and brave survivor, Asia Argento, who has been through more than most could stand, and yet stand she does. She stood up to her monster rapist and now she has to stand up to yet another monster, suicide. The suicide of her beloved lover and ally, Anthony Bourdain. I write these truths because I have been asked to. I know so many around the world thought of Anthony Bourdain as a friend and when a friend dies, it hurts. Many of these people who lost their ‘friend’ are wanting to lash out and blame. You must not sink to that level. Suicide is a horrible choice, but it is that person’s choice.
When Anthony met Asia, it was instant chemistry. They laughed, they loved and he was her rock during the hardships of this last year. Anthony was open with his demons, he even wrote a book about them. In the beginning of their relationship, Anthony told a mutual friend, “He’s never met anyone who wanted to die more than him.” And through a lot of this last year, Asia did want the pain to stop. But here’s the thing, over their time together, thankfully, she did the work to get help, so she could stay alive and live another day for her and her children. Anthony’s depression didn’t let him, he put down his armor, and that was very much his choice. His decision, not hers. His depression won. Anthony and Asia had a free relationship, they loved without borders of traditional relationships, and they established the parameters of their relationship early on. Asia is a free bird, and so was Anthony. Was. Such a terrible word to write. I’ve heard from many that the past two years they were together were some of his happiest and that should give us all solace.
Anthony was 61, the same age my father was when he died. My father also suffered from intermittent deep depression, and like Anthony, was part of a “pull up your bootstraps and march on” generation. The a “strong man doesn’t ask for help” generation. I know before Anthony died he reached out for help, and yet he did not take the doctor’s advice. And that has led us here, to this tragedy, to this loss, to this world of hurt. Do NOT do the sexist thing and burn a woman on the pyre of misplaced blame. Anthony’s internal war was his war, but now she’s been left on the battlefield to take the bullets. It is in no way fair or acceptable to blame her or anyone else, not even Anthony. We are asking you to be better, to look deeper, to read and learn about mental illness, suicide and depression before you make it worse for survivors by judging that which we do not understand, that which can never fully be understood. Sometimes we are stuck in the unknowable, and that is where we are now, a massive wave of darkness that threatens to swallow everyone in its wake.
As I watch Asia do her job on set today, I see a pillar of strength who continues to work to put food on her children’s table. I see Elizabeth Taylor carrying on filming Cat on a Hot Tin Roof despite her love, her husband, dying in a plane crash. I see all of us who have carried on. Please join me in sending healing energy to Anthony on his journey, and to all who’ve been left behind to journey on without him. There is no one to blame but the stigma of loneliness, the stigma of asking for help, the stigma of mental illness, the stigma of being famous and hurting.
We must do more and be better. Anthony, our friend, would want it that way.
To the media and to the random commenter, Anthony would never have wanted Asia to be hurt, I’d like to think he would want us to have the collective conversation that needs to be had about depression. Blame is NOT a conversation, it is the shutting down of our collective growth. Which is where we are now. We have a choice as humans, shrink to our smaller, uglier selves, or be better and grow as only true Phoenixes can. I urge you to be that Phoenix.
With great sadness and even greater hope, I remain,
cc: Asia Argento
If you are considering suicide, reach out. We need you here. You matter. You exist. You count. There is help a phone call away, reach out."
If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911, or call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741. For international resources, here is a good place to begin.