There have been a number of strong, brave women standing up and speaking out against sexual assault. Women like Reese Witherspoon, Amy Poehler, Emma Stone, Michelle Williams, Brie Larson, Rashida Jones, Tracy Ellis Ross, Meryl Streep, Rosario Dawson, America Ferrera, Rose McGowan, and countless others have come together to fight back in Hollywood with the Times Up movement.
Unfortunately, Girls creator Lena Dunham is not one of these women, which has made the internet collectively scratch their heads over an Instagram post she shared of a group photo of her and the women of the Times Up movement. The backlash against Dunham stems from her unfortunate decision to defend Girls writer Murray Miller after he was accused of raping Aurora Perrineau. In a comment on Dunham's Instagram, a user questioned her inclusion, stating:
"I support this initiative and the fight for gender justice and am really glad that the movement is growing. I however am perplexed by the inclusion of Lena Dunham, a woman who publicly accused a young sexual assault survivor of color, Aurora Perrineau, of lying about her assault."
When Dunham initially walked back her defense of Miller and apologized, it led to writer and Lenny Letter contributor Zinzi Clemmons vowing to never write for Dunhman again and called for women--and black women in particular--to divest from her.
The group photo had first been posted by Thor: Ragnarok actress Tessa Thompson, who eventually deleted it after backlash. In a statement, Thompson clarified that no, Dunham was not part of the Times Up initiative and her inclusion in the photo was a surprise.
"Lena was not anywhere present in our group during the countless hours of work for the last two months. We hosted an open house for the actresses for red carpet messaging and Lena presence was a surprise to us all. This is a time of reckoning. And for many, a re-education. So many women also have real work to do. I'm afraid it's too nuanced a conversation to have on this platform. But I hear you, and know that your thoughts and words are not lost on me. It's been discussed."
We're all for unity in the face of sexual assault and harassment, but Dunham's background of defending alleged rapists may not make her the best spokesperson for this movement.