The nation's leading gun-control groups told the Washington Free Beacon on Friday that Harvey Weinstein has not given any money to them despite his promise to channel his anger at himself for sexually abusing numerous women into a fight against the National Rifle Association (NRA).
"We can confirm that he is not an active donor and has not communicated or reached out to us," James Tyll, a spokesperson for the Brady Campaign and Center to Prevent Gun Violence, told the Free Beacon.
Everytown for Gun Safety went a step further saying Weinsten never donated to it, and it would not accept his money if he tried to now. "No, we have not received any contributions from Harvey Weinstein," Kate Folmer, a spokesperson for the group, told the Free Beacon. "And while we do not usually answer hypothetical questions, no we wouldn't accept them."
In response to a New York Times exposé alleging Weinstein engaged in decades of sexual harassment and assault, Weinstein initially blamed the fact that he "came of age in the 60's and 70's, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different" for his alleged inappropriate comments, groping, and even masturbating on plants in front of nonconsenting women.
"That was the culture then," he said.
Still, Weinstein admitted his past actions had "caused a lot of pain" and expressed anger at himself. He said he'd decided to direct his anger elsewhere—namely, the NRA.
"I am going to need a place to channel that anger, so I’ve decided that I’m going to give the NRA my full attention," Weinstein said in a statement to the Times. "I hope Wayne LaPierre will enjoy his retirement party. I’m going to do it at the same place I had my Bar Mitzvah."
Though more accusations of inappropriate behavior and even rape have become public in the weeks since news of Weinstein's behavior broke, Weinstein has offered no new information on his fight against the nation's leading gun-rights organization. Weinstein's spokesperson Sallie Hofmeister did not return multiple requests for comment on the Hollywood mogul's plan to take on the NRA.
Gabby Giffords’s gun-control advocacy group, which recently changed its name from Americans for Responsible Solutions to Giffords, did not respond to multiple requests for comment on whether they'd taken any money from Weinstein or intended to take any donations if he offered them.
The NRA responded to Weinstein's promise to channel his anger at them in a post on their Institute for Legislative Action website. "It should not come as a surprise that an individual who has allegedly used his influence and physical stature to overpower and abuse woman would detest the right to keep and bear arms," the NRA's post said. "Published research on sexual assault from Florida State Professor of Criminology Gary Kleck concluded that rape victims ‘who resist are much less likely to have the rape completed against them than nonresisting victims,' and that, ‘the form of resistance that appears most effective in preventing rape completion is resistance with a gun, knife, or other weapon.'"
The NRA said gun owners shouldn't take Weinstein's threats too seriously.
"As for Weinstein’s recent threats against NRA, gun owners shouldn’t lose any sleep over the alleged sexual predator’s bluster," the post said. "Even if Weinstein weren’t preoccupied with mounting legal woes, the producer isn’t much for follow-through. In response to criticism of his 2014 comments on The Howard Stern Show, Weinstein said he would curtail his support for violent movies. Weinstein said, ‘I have to choose movies that aren’t violent or as violent as they used to be,' and, ‘I know for me personally … I can’t continue to do that. The change starts here. It has already. For me, I can’t do it. I can’t make one movie and say this is what I want for my kids and then just go out and be a hypocrite.' A year later, Weinstein put out the blood-soaked Quentin Tarantino film The Hateful Eight."
The gun-rights group then mentioned that Weinstein's company had fired him and said the movie producer's own retirement party may have to take place in jail.
"On October 8, the Weinstein Company board, which includes Weinstein’s brother Bob, fired the embattled producer," the post said. "Given the criminal implications of some of the allegations against the mogul, and reports of an FBI investigation, it is has yet to be determined if Weinstein’s retirement party will be held at a state or federal penitentiary."