The sexual abuse scandal in Hollywood is growing each day as more celebrities are opening up about their ordeals suffered in the past. The latest to join the list of alleged victims is actress Aurora Perrineau, who has accused the writer and executive producer of Girls, Murray Miller, of raping her when she was 17.
While many praised the actress for showing the courage to speak out against the abuse, Lena Dunham, the creator of the TV series, has sparked a major social media outrage by defending the show producer. The 31-year-old actress and writer of the series tagged Miller as a victim of "the wrong target".
"During the windfall of deeply necessary accusations over the last few months in Hollywood, we have been thrilled to see so many women's voices heard and dark experiences in this industry justified. It is hugely important time of change and, like every feminist in Hollywood and beyond, we celebrate," she said in a joint statement with show's co-showrunner Jenni Konner.
"But during every time of change, there are also incidences of the culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets. We believe, having worked closely with him for more than half a decade, that this is the case with Murray Miller."
Weighing in on the Girls producer, Dunham claimed Miller falls under the 3% assault cases that are misreported.
Her statement reads: "While our first instinct is to listen to every woman's story, our insider knowledge of Murray's situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the 3% of assault cases that are misreported every year. I believe in a lot of things but the first tenet of my politics is to hold up the people who have held me up, who have filled my world with love."
Dunham's latest statement contradicts the one that she made sometime in August this year, when she wrote on Twitter that women never lie about rape.
However, Dunham's latest statement has triggered widespread outrage and many social media users lashed at her statement defending Miller. Some even asked her to stop calling herself a "feminist".
"Lena Dunham being considered a "feminist icon" is an insult to feminism. It's because of people like her that some don't take the movement seriously," said a Twitter user. "Who'd have thought Lena Dunham would throw her name into the ring for Worst Feminist of the Year," added another.
Many social media users recalled her infamous book which she published in 2014. In her memoir, Not That Kind of Girl, she wrote about sexually experimenting with her little sister, Grace. At one point she mentioned that she would bribe her with "three pieces of candy if I could kiss her on the lips for five seconds . . . anything a sexual predator might do to woo a small suburban girl I was trying."
"Lena Dunham wrote about molesting her sister in her book. Of course, she's going to defend a rapist," one wrote.
"Why is everyone so surprised that Lena Dunham is coming to the defense of a sexual assaulter? She sexually abused her younger sister," added another.
Perrineau, now 23, has filed a police complaint against the alleged rape incident. In a statement to The Wrap she said, "I woke up in Murray's bed naked. He was on top of me having sexual intercourse with me. At no time did I consent to any sexual contact with Murray."
However, Miller's lawyers have vehemently denied the allegations and stated that they have "gathered overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims". The Los Angeles police are investigating the case.