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Over the last few months, the #MeToo movement has put many powerful men into the hot seat. For a while, it seemed there was a new sexual misconduct allegation made against a powerful man every other day followed by an admission of guilt soon after. However, Ryan Seacrest is one of the men who fought back against what he claimed to be false allegations made against him.
As we previously reported, the 42-year-old TV host categorically denied sexual misconduct allegations set forth by a wardrobe stylist in November. An investigation into the allegations was subsequently launched and then ultimately closed due to "insufficient evidence." Now, Seacrest has gone public with his feelings on the allegations in the form of a column published in The Hollywood Reporter. In it, Seacrest details what it felt like for him to be wrongly accused of sexual misconduct.
In the column, Seacrest appears to praise the "unprecedented public reckoning by women" in the entertainment industry. He calls many of their stories "heartbreaking," and Seacrest writes about how he's been "amazed by their bravery."
But Seacrest also goes on to say he anticipated an allegation being made against him as an inevitably before suggesting the media was somehow responsible for encouraging false claims. "Yet, I knew, regardless of the confidence I had there was no merit to the allegations, my name would likely soon appear on the lists of those suspected of despicable words and deeds," Seacrest writes. "The pressures of our overflowing newsfeeds would insist on it." Insert my side-eye here.
Elsewhere in his piece, Seacrest highlights the "presumption of innocence" as "an important standard." He then issues a plea that "we must find a way to ensure that everyone—the public, private and public institutions, accusers and alleged accused—is given the opportunity for a swift and fair review." Seacrest ends his column by acknowledging every human being’s "right to be treated equally, regardless of our gender, race, faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or other status." Cool, yes. We're on board.
But before he signs off, Seacrest leaves us with a somewhat vague final note. "I realize the morals and values, the decency we perhaps take for granted, individually and as citizens of the world, are in question," he writes. "Worse, at risk. I do not take these things for granted."
It’s a little unclear whose indecency he’s calling out here. Is it that of those accusers coming forward with dubious accusations? Is it that of the men who’ve taken advantage of their relative power to sexually harass women with whom they work? Or is it that of the media? Maybe it’s all three. Whatever the case, you can go here to take a deeper dive into the piece Seacrest wrote for The Hollywood Reporter .