We are watching the House of Cards collapse. The ivory towers are crumbling. Almost as if there is a hit list, celebrities, politicians, and individuals who have shaped American culture and law are accused of sexual misconduct and harassment weekly. Which reputable figure will fall gracelessly to the next hunt? The questions that arise are obvious, but why now? Why is it only now that these nefarious acts are exposed with such frequency and consideration?
It has been known, by a majority of the public, that people of significant public influence have abused and continue to abuse their power. While stories of these behaviors have been surfacing in politics for several years now, the sphere or inquiry has expanded to celebrities – ones that shape our culture through entertainment and news. It seems to have evolved from smear campaigns to something of a more serious nature.
These new revelations, combined with financial leaks of people in significant power roles, are breaking down the walls, leaving powerful individuals vulnerable and ultimately held accountable. For too long in history people in positions of power were able to exploit others in secrecy. They were able to act in such dark ways, imbibed by their influence, and, in turn, engineer the public’s opinion.
What will come after this is a serious analyzation of all the politics and art that we have been relentlessly subscribed to and fed to everyday of our lives. It is extremely difficult to deconstruct and dissect the matter of opinions and beliefs that we observed and employ – ones that have been created and fixed by these same corrupt individuals.
The notion of conspiracy and witch-hunting is no longer a feasible deflection. Every one of these individuals are now under the scope of their fouls and errors. There is a frightening and liberating component to these recent revelations. It is liberating for obvious reasons: those that had maintained control for all these years are now losing their influence; in turn, the public will be able to shape a world and hold responsible those who should represent the majority. It is frightening because we cannot know the extent of the abuse of power. The fabric of US culture is deeply threaded by these individuals. People have grown up listening and believing them. Where does truth reside in it all? What was real and what was made to strengthen their power and reputation?
For now, it is time to watch these individuals squirm and attempt to justify their means of success and influence. However, they are failing to persuade anyone anymore. For once in history, they are being held accountable by the public, in an avenue that prevents immediate violence.
The promise of democracy, despite its inherent flaws, is that the same tools employed by figures of power to manipulate the public can also become the seed of their downfall. It is beyond the measure of character. They beg for sympathy, for relativity in their actions. They want pity. But, realistically, their actions are only the tip of the iceberg. While a few actions can be qualitatively forgivable, in reality they are only glimpses to the extent of their corruption and abuse.
Unfortunately, most who obtain positions of power have been conditioned to behave this way. It is the circumstance of their role. But, it doesn’t have to be. And for whatever reason, they are now being exposed. Why it has taken so long is the result of many different and complicated reasons, but somehow the evolution of media and the dissemination of information have turned the corner. No longer are they another avenue for people of power to continue their abuse. They have become and hopefully will continue to be what they were always supposed to be: the watch dogs, the safeguards of society.