A French organisation of more than 200 film-makers said Monday it will propose new rules for members charged or convicted of sexual violence, which could lead to the suspension of French-Polish director Roman Polanski.
The board of the ARP directors’ guild voted to present to its members “new procedures to suspend any member facing legal charges, and expel any member convicted, especially for crimes of a sexual nature,” said Pierre Jolivet, ARP president.
The proposed rules for suspension “would affect Roman Polanski whose judicial case is still open in the United States and for which he has been charged,” Jolivet added
The proposed changes to the directors’ guild’s rules will be presented to members for a vote at a special general assembly for which no date has yet been set, an ARP spokesman told AFP.
Polanski has been a fugitive from US justice since admitting to the statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl in 1977 in a plea bargain to avoid a trial on more serious charges.
The 86-year-old film-maker was accused of drugging and raping the girl, and fled to France when it appeared a judge was reconsidering his release.
And this month former French model and actress Valentine Monnier accused Polanski of raping her in 1975 when she was 18 after beating her “into submission” at his Swiss chalet.
Monnier, who now works as a photographer, said she felt compelled to speak out after Polanski compared himself to the hero of his new film, Alfred Dreyfus, the Jewish officer wrongly persecuted as a spy by the French army at the turn of the 20th century.
Despite the controversy swirling around Polanski and calls to boycott his film, “An Officer and a Spy” (“J’accuse” in French) topped the box office in France this weekend, one of the strongest openings for a French film this year.
© 2019 AFP
Trump and the GOP have become the party of the dead
There are few morbid topics subject to greater speculation than the religious loyalty of President Donald Trump's "base." Why an alarmingly large amount of Americans refuse even to entertain any criticism of Trump deserves scrutiny from political scientists, psychologists and perhaps horror novelists working in the school of Edgar Allan Poe.
This article first appeared in Salon.
What is abundantly clear is that no matter who votes for Trump, he and the Republican Party on the national level have no interest in governing on the behalf of living human beings — with the exception of ensuring that a tiny minority of billionaires and multimillionaires enlarge their investment portfolios. Trump evinces no concern for Americans dying of the coronavirus, racist violence or any other malady or injustice. He demonstrates no regard for health care professionals courageously trying to save their patients from dying, and appears cruelly indifferent to the struggles of millions of workers whose livelihoods have been destroyed by COVID-19. Needless to say, Trump also shows contempt for Black Lives Matter, immigrants and anyone who opposes his re-election, which at this moment (and throughout his presidency) is more than half of the American public.
As coronavirus seizes the state, Florida hospitals are in panic mode
This article first appeared in Salon.
There are 47,663 hospital beds in the state right now with 11,782 available (meaning a remaining capacity of 19.82 percent) and a total staffed bed capacity of 59,445, according to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration's Hospital Bed Capacity Dashboard. The state Department of Health also reported on Friday that, out of 95,300 individuals who received coronavirus test results over the course of the previous day, 11,433 tested positive for COVID-19 (all but 90 of whom were Florida residents), meaning that more than 12 percent of the new cases had positive test results. The state also reported 93 new deaths due to COVID-19. (Salon reached out to the Florida Department of Health for comment on this story.)
The GOP is a suicide cult
Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.
Back in March, we argued that Donald Trump had become the charismatic leader of the dumbest suicide cult ever. There were fewer than 500 confirmed cases of Covid-19 at the time, but it wasn't difficult to see the trajectory we were on at even that early date. At the time, we were commenting on the President's* repeated claims that the whole thing was a big hoax and polls showing that Democrats were twice as likely as Republicans to say they were taking steps to avoid becoming infected.