“The View” Debates Aziz Ansari Misconduct Claim: “Is This Really Sexual Assault?” (VIDEO)

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The View Aziz Ansari

By Shari Weiss |

The View Aziz Ansari


On Tuesday’s “The View, the co-hosts debated the sexual misconduct claim against Aziz Ansari and questioned whether he was really at fault. Watch the video below.

A woman anonymously came forward a few days ago to allege Ansari pressured her into sex acts, despite her giving non-verbal cues that she was uncomfortable. He responded by stating he believed everything was consensual. The situation has prompted a lot of discussion about the various degrees of sexual assault. On the ABC talk show, Whoopi Goldberg was perplexed and wanted to know, “What is a non-verbal cue?”

With Meghan McCain the youngest on the panel, she looked to her for insight. McCain said she feared they were going to hit “a lot of landmines talking about this on TV,” but admitted, “I don’t know what that means either.” She went on to say, “I don’t want to shame her because every experience is different, but every sexual situation I’ve been in was on my terms… I have been trying really hard to understand this one, because they went on a date, they still performed sexual acts on each other and she was saying he didn’t pick up on her non-verbal cues.”

McCain went on, “To me, verbal cues are important as well. Saying no is important. I don’t want to shame her,” before adding, “I’m really mixed and quite honestly confused on this one.” Sunny Hostin said, “Consent is always a very difficult thing. When is no no? When is yes yes? It’s something that when you prosecute these kinds of cases, it comes up all the time. When you’re talking about non-verbal consent, it’s you’re not saying no verbally, but you’re [squirming].”

Commented Goldberg, “It seems to be a bit of an issue. So if you’re on a date and he’s not as a good as you thought and you [squirm], does that mean ‘stop, get out, go away’? What ever happened to, ‘Stop, or I’m gonna knock you in your nuts’?” Hostin suggested, “Or ‘I don’t want to be here.'” She went on to mention that Ansari reached out to the woman afterward and was apologetic when she told him how she felt about their interaction.

“There clearly was a missing piece there for both them,” the former federal prosecutor said, going on to ask, “The question is, is this really sexual assault? This is not a case I’d bring to trial. She voluntarily went back with him to his apartment, they did engage in sexual activity consensually, and then somewhere along the lines she had decided to had had enough and wanted to go home.”

McCain tried to put this incident in context of the larger #MeToo movement and the various sexual assault scandals in recent months, such as the Harvey Weinstein cases. “Now we’re heading into this territory where the goal posts are being moved,” she lamented. At that point, Hostin turned to guest co-host Rob Riggle and asked him what he thought. “I’m trying to listen, which is what I think men should be doing right now. I think they should be listening to the conversation,” he responded, earning applause from the audience.

The actor and veteran went on to say, “If you get into a place of mind reading, you’re going to be disappointed. It’s not going to work out for anybody, if we’re expected to read your minds. I promise you that, especially with a sexual encounter.” Still, he again stressed, “There’s nothing I can say that’s going to contribute much to this that we all don’t already know.” He did agree, though, “Non-verbal, it’s very tricky. You’re asking a lot. Non-verbal’s just too vague. You have to be verbal. Once no is established, then it’s established.”

McCain further expressed, “I’m concerned about what this does to the #MeToo movement and I’m also freaked out talking about this on television because I think there’s going to be a huge backlash against people who even dare to question things like non-verbal cues.” But Goldberg told her, “If we can’t ask questions, then we can’t get answers. So you can’t just come at people who say, ‘Listen, I don’t understand this.'” She also said of women, “You make the decision.”

The three females all stressed that they did not think this was a case of date rape. “I don’t want anyone to misconstrue this. I don’t think date rape is okay. I don’t think assault is okay… I just have questions about this specific story,” McCain explained, prompting Hostin ask, “Where is the line now?” Goldberg declared, “The line is very, very clear. If you are not interested in having a physical relationship or you don’t want to have a makeout session, then say goodnight after dinner. Don’t go to their apartment, because it is quite possible that you going to someone’s apartment may make them feel you’re comfortable with this.”

“What if you want to go to his apartment but you just want to kiss?” Hostin asked her. Goldberg, McCain and Riggle responded almost simultaneously, “Tell him that.” Check out the full video below.

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