Amy Schumer has shared her take on the sexual misconduct allegations against comedian and actor Aziz Ansari, who she also counts as a friend.
While appearing on The Katie Couric Podcast, Schumer spoke at length about the claims against Ansari and the issue of consent.
“I don’t think anyone wants to see Aziz’s career ruined or his life ruined or anything like that, but that’s where people’s minds go,” the Trainwreck star said.
“They go, ‘Did he deserve this?’ And it’s really not about that. I think it’s about expressing and showing women that that behavior’s not OK, and not only can you leave, but you need to leave, because the women who come after you … You’re leaving a mark for them too, so it’s not just about your own encounter.
She continued: “There are so many other kinds of sexual misconduct.
“We’ve all — every woman I know, every woman in this room — we’ve all had these experiences. And in this current climate, it brings these things up and you go, ‘God, none of that was OK.”
Schumer reinforced the notion that any behaviour that crosses the line or makes a woman feel uncomfortable is “not acceptable”.
“If you have a doctor that makes you uncomfortable, or you get a massage, or you have a date with someone and they coerce you in a situation like the Aziz one, I don’t think there’s any sort of criminal charge, but I think that it’s good for everybody to learn that that behavior’s not acceptable,” she explained.
“It’s not a crime, but it’s not cool. And it can still really mess with a woman."
Earlier this month, a woman using the pseudonym 'Grace' told Babe about a date with Ansari that left her in tears, feeling upset and violated.
“It took a really long time for me to validate this as sexual assault,” Grace told Babe. “I was debating if this was an awkward sexual experience or sexual assault. And that’s why I confronted so many of my friends and listened to what they had to say, because I wanted validation that it was actually bad.
“I believe that I was taken advantage of by Aziz. I was not listened to and ignored. It was by far the worst experience with a man I’ve ever had.”
Following the allegations, Ansari released a statement confirming some details of the date but saying he had thought the sexual activity was “completely consensual” at the time.
You can listen to the full interview with Schumer here.