Sunday, April 17, 2022

Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard Trial.. How in Hades Did I Get to Watching This?

Every now and then, I will go looking for movies, shows, coming up, to see if I'm interested in anything to look forward to watch. I will Google my favorite actors or pay attention to trailers or stories that come up in news feeds.  Such as Julia Roberts in "Gaslit." I can't wait to see that one. I REMEMBER Martha Mitchell. My mother loved her when she came on the TV during the Nixon years. 

I'll look up Depp, Keifer Sutherland, or Keanu Reeves, Or even Clint Eastwood, (though I wondered about him talking to a chair) loved Gran Torino years ago and Cry Macho was pretty good. I remember reading that Johnny Depp was doing a movie about W. Eugene Smith a couple of years ago.  I had learned about Smith's photography and coverage of Minimata Bay mercury poisoning in Japan, while doing some activism on water contamination in Appalachia.  Yes, so I like Depp's movies and I was interested in that movie. 

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a brief mention of it in a news feed and went looking for where I could see it. I had forgot about it. It was like LOOKING FOR A NEEDLE in a haystack!  And it was weird to have to search for a Johnny Depp movie that hard!! It's been finished for a couple years and this trailer is from this month!! This wasn't the trailer I first saw, the trailer I saw was from a year ago. And then the movie just disappeared.

I had known about his messy divorce from Amber Heard. Remember seeing he lost a defamation case in the UK.  I don't know about you, but all the stuff coming out about him in the media just didn't seem to fit. But I wasn't's Hollywood troubles. Big fan of his movies because I like movies that take me somewhere else than where am for a little bit or that inform me and tell me something of history. 

So I was searching for Minimata and went on Twitter. I'm hardly EVER on Twitter. I don't like Twitter really, but it's up to date more than any social media I know. I came across posts for Minimata coming up for streaming on @TheRealLauraB and Movies Myths and Monsters.  

On this Twitter page, they were covering the former Depp vs Heard trial in the UK and the upcoming trial in Fairfax, VA. Their posts were eye opening. I sat there and for two hours and just read their posts. All these court documents from the UK.  I'm a, Forensic files,  NCIS, Law and Order fan too, BTW. 

I got on their website of Movies, Myths and Monsters with Laura B and Jax. They were about 15 episodes in of reading these UK transcripts in a podcast, called. "On the Road to Fairfax". So for a week or more I was working around listening to their podcasts...and the more I listened the more I understood WHY I couldn't find Johnny Depp's latest movie. He'd been labled a wife beater and abuser, really without any proof, (the UK trial, Just reading the transcripts proved that trial was a joke) and Depp had been canceled.  

It was like, excuse my language, "Holy shit, they canceled Johnny Depp!" That's why I haven't seen or couldn't find the Minimata movie. Now I've a problem with this cancel culture, we are currently in. On social media especially.  NO trial, no actual arrests, just "claims" sometimes absolute lies, to cancel a person or a business.  

I was happy with the #METOO movement. I thought I understood it.  I had a really creepy manager once that used to rub up against me inappropriately, and I couldn't complain because I needed the job and at corporate a complaint definitely wasn't going anywhere.  As soon as I got away from him and that job though, I ran into his wife at a grocery store and told her what he was doing. It was a hard conversation..but she was not shocked....but put him on notice at least with his wife. 

But what has happened under the guise of MeToo is beyond advocating against discrimination and inappropriate behavior by the powerful. And I was disappointed that Me too wasn't inclusive enough to be both male and female. Me too should not have a gender. 

I was remembering a friend that was stone mason with a construction crew. This lady had hired them to build a pool. I remember him talking about she expected men of the crew to "service her" on the side.  Now the stereotype of men will have sex with anything standing, unless you are in prison is not true. They quit the job rather than have to have sex with this woman. Cost him 2 weeks of work until the next job began. Me too could of had a lot more support, if it had been more inclusive. 

But this trial, between the Depp and Heard fans, it is like the wild west on social media.  Attacks of doxing and having channels, websites canceled. Even if you don't like what they are saying, as long as they are not attacking and getting anyone else in reality attacked, opinions should not be silenced. They are INSANE. 

It's gone too far and we need NATIONAL even INTERNATIONAL legislation that anyone that perpetuates actual outright exposure to harm and lies to harm someone else on line or in reality, ALL of those who make false accusations should be charge themselves, fined with jail time.  Some have had their addresses and real identities exposed with calls made to the local police for a swat visit (Marilyn Manson was swatted in his case) or social services turning them in on false allegations. It's ugly.

So with all that going on, I stick to watching mostly the lawyers and those that rely on actual documents of the trial on Youtube debate this case. But some are more concerned with who wins the case in court and who loses. I like the one's that see as I do..this can have far reaching effects on how we treat DV cases and allegations. Maybe reframing MeToo.

Johnny Depp, whether he wins or loses this case, even with all the ugly of that relationship, will actually win in the court of public opinion. Many more on social media have taken up the cause and have those documents from the UK trial.  

I think after this is over, he can drag around "Jack in the Box" and visit as Captain Jack Sparrow to sick children in hospitals and parents will know he isn't the abuser his ex wife painted him out to be. Which his reputation is important to him.  

There were several lies she's been caught in already. I'm so glad I don't have to go to court in the UK. That judge took heresay over an actual witness testimony, and would not allow experts. 

Because we all understand that relationships can be toxic and messy, their marriage is not a suprise.  But it's brought out more than just this case. The abuse regardless of gender. If you don't think that women can be abusers what rock have you been living under? We can be as strong as any man that ever lived. It doesn't matter "size".  I've been in a few fights with those larger than I am and won.

I was a biker's ol lady. I remember one man, who at the biker meets, would just hit me on my arm or legs in passing with his knuckle to give me charley horse bruises, for no damn reason.  I let it go. I'd had worse, just made a point to stay away from him and avoid him. He was just this crude as all get out biker.  Always say nasty crap to all the women. He always caught me when my husband wasn't near.  

One day, he grabbed me by my neck and put me in a head lock, pulling my face towards his crotch and said, "Hey baby, you hungry?" I grabbed him by the balls through his pants with a death grip and twisted so hard he let me go and was screaming.  He's trying to push me away, and hit me on the head and the more he moved, the harder I squeezed. twisted and held on.  

People were starting to step in and my husband by that time had arrived and stopped them. I heard him say, "No...she's got this!"  By hearing his voice, I knew my back up arrived. 

He was screaming, "Oh shit, oh shit?" I said, "It hurts don't it?"  He was hollering, "Let go!, Let go!, GD you got my balls". I said, "Yes, I do, and we are not going to touch or hurt each other again are we?"  He was saying, "No mam, No mam, I won't...we won't!" And I let go. 

He backed up and the pain was very apparent, he had tears in his eyes. I think he was shocked a woman would do that.   He was about 6'4 and I was 5'3. Saw him many times after that. He never bothered me again. So yes, women can defend themselves, do damage, no matter the size.

What this trial really focuses us on is abuse regardless of gender. Regardless if Heard had been pushed or hit, she, from the testimony in the UK, and from the testimony of their marriage counselor, she appears to be the dominant abuser. The majority of her claims can't be proven but Depp's can.

I can't believe the ACLU made her the ambassador for violence against women, without even reading the UK testimony. What were they thinking? I don't know what happened to ACLU. C'ville case was where they lost me.

I worked briefly as a domestic violence counselor at a women's shelter. It was heartbreaking, HARD work.  I heard things and saw things that our inhumanity to each other can warp a brain.  What AH claims happened, on the days she claims it, there is NO way "amica" cream nor makeup is going to cover that. By claiming it even now in court, in public and if proven false, she's defamining him at trial. That's just nuts.  She is not helping REAL abuse victims at all!! 

I've seen men who had been abused by women. One night, I was the supervisor staying at the shelter overnight. I got a call from the police about 1 in the morning. We were a regional shelter covering about 4 sometimes 5 counties. 

They had a man that had been beat up by his wife. He would not go to the ER, nor file charges. Now days, if an assualt occurs by anyone, many states take up that charge. But it wasn't that way back then. The abused had to file charges and he wouldn't.

The police had removed him from the house and he needed someplace to stay until he could contact a friend or family member to pick him up. I think the police just wanted me to talk to him about the abuse, while he waited. We were set up for women clients. But this cop and I, we'd worked with several cases while I was there. 

I had him bring him on in, set up a cot for him in my office. I was told this was the 4th time that the police had been called to this residence. His teenage daughter verified that he was taking beatings from her mother on a regular basis.  He was beat all to hell. Old bruises on under forearms with new scratches on top of his arms. His eyes and one ear were swollen, busted lip. Scratches on his face. 

I treated him with ice packs, tylenol, antibiotic cream and bandaids. I tried to talk to him about this abuse.  That no one should have to live this way. Did he have someone he could stay with? Does his wife have mental issues, that he needs help with? etc.  He told me, yes she has problems, she would not go to doctors, had no form of support but him, (damsel in distress), he married for life, he's repsonsible for her and he stays to take care of his kids.  Typical male thought, as protector, even though he's being beaten the hell out of, he's convinced himself he let her do this to him, for a good reason, and he could and should take it. 

Now we all know this is not an environment for children to be in. And had he been a female client, I could have offered him services for a lawyer, mental health, housing.. etc. None of our grants covered male clients. I didn't even know what to do with the intake paperwork.  

This was a man that needed help and I had NOTHING to offer but cold packs and bandaids.  His friend came about daybreak and picked him up. He was going to pick up his car and go to work. That's the last I saw of him.  

We all know men that are abusive, but we also know of a male family member who has been abused or unfairly treated in their relationships, also by our systems and institutions. They take it because that's what men are "supposed" to do?  Custody battles that are insanely unfair, both to women and men because there is no consistancy to how things are set up in our institutions. 

I've seen the process get better over the years. In Virginia, the children get a guardian ad litum now. They are short staffed but having someone there for the interests of the children beyond the parents helps.  But when they get it wrong, it still takes money for court and to get it before a judge.  If you have money you can fight. Johnny Depp has money and the status to fight and he's doing just that. So many of us don't have the means to fight for what's fair or right. 

What this trial I hope does is for us to rethink how we approach domestic violence. That ALL genders can be abusers and abused. That if women or anyone is about wanting equal standing, then there has to be equal treatment about domestic violence.  We believe what women tell us, but verify. We should believe what everyone tells us but VERIFY what they say. You have to prove it. Those accused should be innocent until proven guilty. Every person, whatever gender, should be evaluated on their own merits. 

I hate that Me TOO was highjacked by "allegations" and by those with ambitions. Or as my friend Maribel used to say of social climbers, "They will ride any bleeding heart social issue to get money in their pocket and a feather in their cap and never really be about the work. " 

There is another case involving Marilyn Manson that is just as nuts as Johnny Depp's on alligations. I was never a fan of Manson music. He is a counter culture entertainer from way back. I remember some interview he gave, warning parents to pay attention to their kids or he will get to raise them. I loved his messages about hypocrisy in our culture. I don't like hypocritical churches either. 

I ended my DV counselor job because my boss, was taking funds that were intended for clients and putting her boyfriend up in an apartment.   I could NOT work for someone I couldn't trust who was willing to reallocate funds in nefarious ways. Man or woman. The job was hard enough. 

Another thing bothering me about trial, are those banning the watching of Fantastic Beasts movie, because Depp is not in it. Really? I LOVE the Harry Potter stuff. I love Jude Law (he's another one I look up all the time) so, though I would have LOVED, absolutely loved to see Depp as Grindewald, I'm not banning that one.  I'm sure there are plenty that will and WB will hear you. But each to his own. 

I don't know what is in store for Johnny Depp's future but I know this won't take his talent.  I think the studios and distribution houses screwed up in reference to Depp, big time over this, I believe they are starting realize that.  Yes, his marriage and divorce were AWFUL, like that's never happened in Hollywood? but his talent and popularity is still there!! 

So I'm watching the Depp Vs Heard trial. Now who wins?  May all of us if we change the conversation about how Domestic Violence effects all genders. It's not about winning, it's about what is the truth.

 This is the website for The real Laura B and Jax Movies, Myths & Monsters  

These are youtubers I'm watching.  @legalbytesmedia

Colonel Kurtz - though she is more about the Marilyn Manson case. 

That Umbrella Guy....cracks me up. He gets excited because he's been targeted.  Has been listed in court filings of AH along with others with her lawyers trying to stop their 1st amendment rights. lots of noise. But amusing to watch. And a really cool comic book creator.

Several others but I'm tired. I'll be really tired of this before it's over. But thats how I jumped in watching something I would not normally watch. If you look at LauraB's twitter or that umbrella guy's twitter you will find many more covering this trial beyond Court TV. 

His mother and family life was brought up in the trial. I'll have to write something about tough, mean, sometimes mental, Appalachian women.  We are breaking the cycles of what we knew. Which is not a bad thing.