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James Franco accused of inappropriate sexual behavior

Original post made on Jan 11, 2018

Actor and Palo Alto native James Franco has become the latest high-profile man to face sexual-misconduct allegations.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, January 11, 2018, 10:14 AM

Comments (29)

Posted by resident
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 11, 2018 at 10:56 am

"If I have done something wrong I will fix it." Sounds like he is in denial like so many of the other perps.


Posted by Francophone
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:11 am

Does this mean renaming Jordan to Franco Middle School is off the table?


Posted by Samuel L.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:11 am

Samuel L. is a registered user.

James Franco: pride and joy of Palo Alto High School. Maybe Diorio can invite him back to work with her students and paint some more murals.


Posted by Sue
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:58 am

Will he get due process, unlike so many other males so accused? What law(s) did he break? Remember, he is one of us!


Posted by Samuel L.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 11, 2018 at 2:54 pm

Samuel L. is a registered user.

Sue, what does that mean, "he's one of us"? So he gets a pass? Have you read the LA Times article.

Laws dont to have to be broken to qualify you as a scumbag


Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 11, 2018 at 6:28 pm

Equal treatment.


Posted by Not a fan
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:26 pm

I've always found his self importance and desperate publicity stunts off-putting.

He says he doesn't remember doing those things. I believe that. Very self centered people don't pay that much attention to their effect on others, only when they are applauding.


Posted by Paly Parent
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:54 pm

The idea that a high school known for rape culture, Title IX investigations, and sexual assault scandals celebrates its relationship with a credibly accused serial abuser is sad and, well, not surprising. Here's an article from the Paly Voice on Franco teaching a class to high school students, mugging with the school's celeb teacher Esther Wojcicki. Web Link And here's the article from last September - James Franco to Palo Alto journalism teacher: 'You're my hero'. Web Link I wonder if the feeling is mutual?


Posted by Concerned Parent
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 12, 2018 at 9:55 am

Why isn’t this front page news? When the same kind of thing came up last year in an alleged incident between two minors it was front page news. Last year the student was a black male and this time it’s a celebrity. Given the fact that there’s a history of soliciting 17 year olds and he was a teacher at Paly for an acting class it doesn’t seem like they really want to make it a big deal.


Posted by Parent 2
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 12, 2018 at 10:06 am

Paly Parent,

Now would be a great time for Paly to stand tall and issue a statement about the media stories this week. That would help turn around its anemic record on how it handles sexual harassment and assault.

Recall a few years ago that Paly's principal had an opportunity to address sexual harassment at the school but decided to stay silent on 20+ complaints she received, earning her a “you violated federal law” finding for her inaction. Web Link

Remember too Paly staff who met with a freshman girl last year who is claiming she was sexually assaulted on campus by one of the school’s star athletes.

No one at Paly told the freshman or her mother that they could have the district launch a full investigation. Instead, Paly kept the investigation "in house" and decided not to discipline the athlete for his role in this despite the police issuing a restraining order to keep him away from her. Not feeling supported, the young woman's mother moved her out of Paly in the middle of her freshman year.

Paly staff kept paltry notes because they admitted they wanted to keep the details from the district, media and community. But outside investigators uncovered enough information to find that Paly should have done lots more here too. Web Link


Posted by kids
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 12, 2018 at 10:38 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by Former PAUSD Parent
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 12, 2018 at 6:58 pm

And with the increase in HPV throat cancers now being seen in young women, and the link between cervical cancers and HPV, I would definitely think twice before doing anything nowadays. Aids is also still out there.
The schools might consider adding courses in rational thinking (and morality) to their curriculum.
Girls are being tricked into doing stuff thinking that they won't get pregnant or "infected" - WRONG!


Posted by Sue
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm

[Post removed.]


Posted by Concerned Citizen
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jan 13, 2018 at 8:27 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jan 13, 2018 at 9:22 am

Hollywood, showbiz itself, has never had a squeaky clean image. So I don't see why any of this should ever surprise us.

Of course, there are bound to be those who have used their celebrity status to gain personal satisfaction a lot more than others. But there are always been young starlets who are willing to do whatever it takes to get their big break to get into the big league.

Now I am not saying that any of this is right and I am pleased to see that Hollywood now has to clean up its act. But whenever a young "nobody" has the chance of earning such astronomical amounts of dollars for doing in front of the camera things which the majority of us would only do in the privacy of our own bedrooms, I can't be surprised when some demand liberties and others are willing to give.

James Franco is, from the movies I have seen, a talented actor. I am sure that there are very many actors on the brink of stardom in Hollywood who have never made it big. Is it ever "luck" that gives them the big break or something else? For many standing in the wings of the "new" present day Hollywood, I feel sure their knees are knocking in case some of their past exploits are about to be outed. If we could go back to the days of the first silent movies, I am sure that similar things went on then that we will probably never know about.

Showbiz, like professional sports, are about to tidy up their act and have to. That is a good thing. Unless another Harvey W surfaces, I think that for the rest, it has to come to a stage where we let bygones be bygones and just feel rest assured that the same will no longer be happening. Lessons to be learned for all.


Posted by kids
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 13, 2018 at 6:17 pm

@Sue

So you think it should be James Franco middle school? He is "one of us" ? What does that mean. Are people in Palo Alto somehow different than everyone else? what? I agree that he is a great talent but should not be exempt just because he is your neighbor.


Posted by Sue
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 14, 2018 at 10:42 am

[Post removed.]


Posted by Concerned Parent
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Jan 14, 2018 at 11:45 am

If they are going to rename Jordan why don’t they name it after a TRUE ROLE MODEL. There are plenty of people in this community who haven’t been accused of soliciting 17 year olds or pressuring girls to comply in uncomfortable situations. Just because you have had a successful career in show business doesn’t give you a pass. Just because you are “one of us “ doesn’t give you a pass. You can’t ignore the fact that he’s been in multiple situations that have made people uncomfortable enough to have the courage to come out publicly. It’s easy to blame the girls but the one thing all these accusations have in common is him.


Posted by Paly Parent
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 14, 2018 at 2:10 pm

The chances of a school being named after Franco are zero. I don't think he should be welcomed on to the Paly campus any more, at least until these accusations are run to ground. Why they have a mural he painted is beyond me - they painted over one, now is a good time to replace the other with a student mural.


Posted by resident
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jan 15, 2018 at 10:15 am

The Problem(?) of any one who makes a lot of money and is very good looking if either a male or female is that there are a lot of people who want to be a part of that Show and benefit from hanging around with the person. You can watch a Justin Beaver show and the girls are going crazy and say things like they want to have a baby with him. You can see that in the sports world with famous people like Tiger Woods who has people throwing themselves at him - used to. And the Kardashians have multiple people trying to get on the gravy train with them. It comes with show business / sports popularity / other famous people where the person has money and throws a lot of money around. There is nothing unusual about the situation we are just sensitized to it now. I think anyone at this point all are well aware that any thing they do or say will pop-up on social media. I guess that is the trade-off they take for pursuing careers in which they are selling a face, talent and skill. I feel sorry for Hollywood now as they have overstated their importance to the world. No one is buying it anymore. [Portion removed.]


Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Jan 15, 2018 at 11:18 am

Wojicki is almost as annoying as Franco. I remember being assaulted by a male student at Paly. I punched him in the face, and he never bothered me again. Even back then the school admin was a bunch of incompetents who couldn't adequately deal with boys of poor character. How sad that that hasn't changed.


Posted by Demographic
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 15, 2018 at 12:51 pm

I am glad we live in a time when people can be fired, shunned, or ruined because they are accused of violating social code, ethics, or laws. We can go straight to the punishment phase without the time, effort, and expense of proving their guilt in a formal venue or court.


Posted by Demographic
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 15, 2018 at 4:07 pm

@Hmmm
"I remember being assaulted by a male student at Paly. I punched him in the face, and he never bothered me again."

I would agree. Punching people in the face solves assault problems. Thank you for pointing out the simple and obvious solution to these James Franco assault charges.


Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jan 16, 2018 at 10:39 am

Margaret Mead, the famous (back in the day, at least) anthropologist and proponent of greater sexual freedom for women came up with a proposal regarding sexual harassment that is somewhat similar to what we now have as sexual harassment laws, but, in some ways, stricter:

"What we need, in fact, are new taboos that are appropriate to the new society we are struggling to create—taboos that will operate within the work setting as once they operated within the household. Neither men nor women should expect that sex can be used either to victimize women who need to keep their jobs or to keep women from advancement or to help men advance their own careers. A taboo enjoins. We need one that saves clearly and unequivocally, “You don't make passes at or sleep with the people you work with.”"

Web Link

There is a significant difference between what Mead proposed and current laws, which are more in line with this:

"In 2008, legal scholar Mary Anne Case explored the idea in the Vermont Law Review, refining it somewhat: “What I would want to focus on discouraging in the workplace is not any and all eroticism or search for sexual partners, but sex initiated between people hierarchically arranged in a direct reporting relationship with one another.”"

I think the Slate article makes interesting reading.


Posted by JA3
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jan 23, 2018 at 10:39 am

One of many articles published today regarding Mr. Franco:
Web Link

Given the accusations, now quite numerous and far-reaching, should not the Palo Alto Unified School District ban Mr. Franco from any and all school campuses and the District's offices?


Posted by Former Paly Parent
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jan 23, 2018 at 12:01 pm

My kid told me deleted she deleted the photo she had of her and friends taken with Franco at Paly. Good.


Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Feb 1, 2018 at 11:50 am

Annette is a registered user.

I do not know Mr. Franco and am not writing this in defense of him per se. But I am concerned that we are immediately conflating accusations and allegations with guilt. It is important that we not inadvertently erode the principle of innocent until proven guilty.

Also, the school's decision is wishy-washy. Per this morning's news they are removing the outdoor mural that can be seen by the general public but not other art that he did that is inside. Huh? Either there's a solid reason to remove the art (all of it) or there isn't.


Posted by children
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Feb 6, 2018 at 4:56 pm

Only remove what is on the surface, nothing underneath.


Posted by Samuel L.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Feb 6, 2018 at 9:01 pm

Samuel L. is a registered user.

It's all about appearances. Kim Diorio even stated the mural was removed because it was the most visible to the outside community. That's what they always do. They'll say they're making changes, but nothing will really change. Does anyone really think that this RISE committee that the district put together will actually accomplish anything other than post updates on their meetings and they say they've started training, or workshops, etc... but no real change will occur

It's all about putting on a good face and delaying until everything blows over. Hopefully the community will not let any of these past transgressions blow over. School board and Paly administrators still have a lot of things to answer to.


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