John Leguizamo Nails The Absurdity Of How We Talk About Rape

John Alberto Leguizamo born July 22, 1964 is a Colombian-American actor, voice artist, stand-up comedian, film producer, playwright and screenwriter. He came to prominence with a co-starring role in the action/comedy Super Mario Bros. (1993) and a supporting role in the crime drama Carlito’s Way (1993). Other notable roles include Sid the Sloth in the animated Ice Age films (2002–2016) and the narrator of the sitcom The Brothers García (2000–2004). As of 2009, he has appeared in over 75 films, produced over 10 films, starred on Broadway in several productions (winning several awards), made over 12 television appearances, and has produced or starred in many other television shows.
by Emily Pollock,
If the recent spate of allegations against famous men has taught us anything, it’s that we’re really bad at talking about rape and sexual harassment. And actor/comedian John Leguizamo hit it out of the park with a recent tweet about the reporting on sexual violence.


The past month has seen some terrible hot takes on sexual violence, from “as a father of a daughter”-style platitudes to genuine victim-blaming. But Leguizamo’s tweet was specifically responding to the recent revelation that pundit Bill O’Reilly settled a $32 million lawsuit for having a “nonconsensual sexual relationship” with an employee.

Leguizamo, who’s well-known for his comedic chops, fired back: “If we’re going to call rape a “nonconsensual sexual relationship” why don’t we call murder “nonconsensual assisted suicide?’”

Leguizamo frequently tweets about social justice causes, from the Black Lives Matter movement to the inadequate response to the Puerto Rico crisis. But this tweet, in particular, struck a nerve, garnering 21K retweets in two days.

John Leguizamo ✔ @JohnLeguizamo
If we’re going to call rape a “nonconsensual sexual relationship” why don’t we call murder “nonconsensual assisted suicide?”
Millennialaire @destroyideas
It’s not embezzlement, it’s nonconsensual reimbursement.

Many of the retweets included riffs off of Leguizamo’s original statement, rebranding serious crimes with names like “non-consensual bank withdrawal” and “nonconsensual redistribution of property.”

29 Oct
John Leguizamo ✔ @JohnLeguizamo
If we’re going to call rape a “nonconsensual sexual relationship” why don’t we call murder “nonconsensual assisted suicide?”
Gal Hazør @dkHaze
It’s not arson, it’s “nonconsensual aggravated central heating”
8:50 AM – Oct 29, 2017

And, although the tweets are hilarious, they also have a grain of uncomfortable truth.

29 Oct
John Leguizamo ✔ @JohnLeguizamo
If we’re going to call rape a “nonconsensual sexual relationship” why don’t we call murder “nonconsensual assisted suicide?”
Ennwhycee @ennwhycee
Burglary: Non-Consensual Open House


Leguizamo’s tweet, and the responses, highlight the difference between how we talk about rape and how we talk about other crimes. Although we claim to condemn sexual violence, it’s often treated as a kind of “crime-lite,” not serious enough to be worth ruining a perpetrator’s life or reputation.

Personal life
Leguizamo married actress Yelba Osorio in 1994. They divorced in 1996 after two years of marriage.

He married Justine Maurer, a costumer on Carlito’s Way, in a Catholic-Jewish ceremony on June 28, 2003; he is Catholic and Maurer is Jewish. They have two children, daughter Allegra Sky Leguizamo (born 1999) and son Ryder Lee “Lucas” Leguizamo (born 2000). They live in Manhattan, New York.

In 2008, Leguizamo received the Rita Moreno HOLA Award for Excellence from the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors (HOLA). In 2011, he received the Made in NY Award from New York City.

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