Aziz Ansari story sparks heated debate over #MeToo Movement

Aziz Ansari
FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 27, 2017 file photo, Aziz Ansari arrives at the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Awards in Beverly Hills, Calif. What makes a private sexual encounter newsworthy? A little-known website raised that very question after publishing an unidentified woman’s vivid account of the sexual advances of the comedian. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

(AP) – The #MeToo movement has been embraced by legions of women as a vital step toward countering widespread sexual abuse and misconduct. This week, more so than at any point in the movement’s brief history, there’s visceral discussion about its potential for causing harm.

The catalyst was the publication by Babe.net of an account by a woman identified only as “Grace” detailing her 2017 encounter with comedian Aziz Ansari. The article intimated that Ansari deserved inclusion in the ranks of abusive perpetrators, yet many readers — women and men — concluded the encounter amounted to an all-too-common instance of bad sex during a date gone awry.

Ansari has said he apologized immediately after the woman told him about her discomfort during an encounter he believed to be consensual.