What’s the biggest problem for child actors in Hollywood? Education? Momagers? Managers mismanaging finances? How about molestation and rape by the very people that are supposed to be looking out for them?
It’s that last one.
Last summer, 80’s child actor Corey Feldmen opened up on ABC’s “Primetime Nightline” about the secret that no one in Hollywood wants to talk about:
"I can tell you that the No. 1 problem in Hollywood was and is and always will be pedophilia. That's the biggest problem for children in this industry ... It's the big secret."
It’s hard to imagine a person turning a blind eye to the sexual abuse of a child, but an entire industry to the sexual abuse of a demographic? The claim seems almost absurd; too tragic to be true and too devastating to contemplate as reality.
But recent allegations are hard to ignore. Three separate instances of alleged child sexual abuse have come to light in the past two weeks.
Martin Weiss is a 47-year-old Hollywood child actor manager who was accused by a former client (who was under twelve at the time) who claims that Weiss told him "what they were doing was common practice in the entertainment industry."
59-year-old Fernando Rivas has been charged with coercing a child “to engage in sexually explicit conduct, and also with production and distribution of child pornography. He is best known for being an award-winning composer for Sesame Street.
Jason James Murphy, 35, worked as a casting director for years on family films like Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and Bad News Bears before the Los Angeles Times broke the news that he was a registered sex offender. Not one of those ‘got caught peeing in a public place’ offenders either. Murphy had kidnapped and sexually abused a young boy.
How is this happening? Why isn’t anyone saying anything? Is money really that seductive that people would turn a blind eye to powerful, disgusting people that steal childhoods from kids with stars in their eyes? After all, if pedophilia were to come to light, it would shut down the set, at least temporarily, if not permanently. No set, no show, no paycheck.
No child should ever be violated like that, no matter how much money, power, or fame is involved.
Image via bdearth/Flickr