Nick Hughes
Features Editor

I am noticing a disturbing trend in the comments sections and Twitter threads regarding Marilyn Manson. There is a large amount of victim blaming going on and I have had enough of it.

Evan Rachel Wood is someone I was not familiar with until a few days ago. After some research, I found out she is an actress that has been in some great cinematic pieces. These, for me, are WestWorld and True Blood.

Wood, during a senate testimony in 2018, said she was abused but never named the abuser. The committee being the U.S. House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security. On Feb. 1, Wood identified Marilyn Manson, also known as Brian Warner, as her abuser. Following this accusation, four other women have come forward alleging abuse committed by Manson.

During the Senate testimony from 2018 Woods stated she experienced, “toxic mental, physical and sexual abuse which started slow but escalated over time, including threats against my life, severe gaslighting and brainwashing, [and] waking up to the man that claimed to love me raping what he believed to be my unconscious body.”

I want to take some time to explain some terminology. Gaslighting, according to Medical News Today is, “a form of psychological abuse where a person or group makes someone question their sanity, perception of reality, or memories.” This according to MayoClinic.
What kind of person does this you may be asking? That can be answered by explaining the definition of narcissism. Which is, “excessive interest in or admiration of oneself and one’s physical appearance.”

Now, a narcissist exhibits, according to Healthline, “selfishness at the (usually extreme) expense of others, plus the inability to consider others’ feelings at all.” That lack of empathy and complete disregard infuriates me. Manson, in my opinion, is an abuser. Logically, five women came forward and accused Manson of abuse, one would assume that the abuse claims are true.

The only common factor that connects all these women, to the best of my knowledge, is their connection to Manson. These women stepped forward so they would not have to live in fear any longer. One person coming forward opens the door to other victims. I want to say I am so proud of the women who came forward. That takes courage and determination that some do not have.

What do the women who suffered this abuse receive though in return for exposing an abuser? They get hate and belittlement. The types of comments that I have read on Twitter and other social media platforms makes me ashamed.

To summarize all the comments into one succinct phase, “She (Evan Rachel Wood) should have known better. It’s Marilyn Mason, just look at the guy.” What I say to this is that blaming the victim is never the answer. A victim of abuse needs help and care, not to be told that they are the ones at fault. People do not ask to be abused. To say otherwise is a path I do not even want to entertain.

Manson, to the credit of the phrase above, is an odd-looking person, which, admittedly, never bothered me personally. I will admit that prior to this incident, I liked Marilyn Manson. I am a metal head and I really enjoyed his music. One of my old all time favorite songs was, “The Beautiful People,” by Manson.

I refuse to listen to him anymore and I call on anyone reading this article to do the same. I have been in a bubble of ignorance when it comes to artistic expression and I am striving to break free of that. This starts with shunning Marilyn Manson and all his products and supporting the women he abused.