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Alec Baldwin announced Saturday that he would be moving away from Twitter after he received criticism for comments he made about Rose McGowan and Harvey Weinstein

By Dave Quinn
November 04, 2017 03:40 PM
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Alec Baldwin is taking a break from Twitter.

The 59-year-old actor announced Saturday that he would be moving away from social media after he received criticism for admitting that the had heard a rumors “for decades” about Harvey Weinstein allegedly raping Rose McGowan.

“It is [with] some degree of sadness that I will suspend posting on this, a TWITTER account, for a period of and in the current climate,” Baldwin wrote in a series of tweets. “It was never my intention, in my public statements, to ‘blame the victim’ in the many sexual assault cases that have emerged recently. I simply posited that the settlement of such cases certainly delayed justice, though I am fully aware that those settlements were entered into [with] the understanding that settlement is wise, intimidated into believing so. My heart goes out to all such victims. My goal is to do better in all things related to gender equality. Au revoir.”

He added that the will remain active on the Twitter account for his foundation, focusing solely on the foundation’s work.

Speaking with PBS News Hour on Friday, Baldwin said he “didn’t know anything” for sure about Weinstein but had heard rumblings of Weinstein’s alleged rape of McGowan.

“I know that when you talked about Harvey Weinstein in the business, for example, for decades, you knew that he was highly intrusive in the process of making film,” Baldwin said. “You know, his nickname was Harvey Scissorhands and he was very intrusive in the path of the directors who worked for him. Number two, you knew that he was a very intense guy and very bullying guy, and was shouting and screaming at people and exhorting them when he didn’t get his way. And, last but not least, you heard the rumor that he raped Rose McGowan. You heard that over and over. We have heard that for decades, and nothing was done.”

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Credit: Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan/Getty Images

Alec Baldwin

McGowan responded on Twitter by writing, “Told you everyone knew. No one cared. Men ran the show. Women toed the line. No more.”

Weinstein, 65, has been accused of sexual misconduct by over 50 women since The New York Times and The New Yorker documented decades of alleged abuse in detailed articles in October.

The New York Times reported that McGowan was part of a settlement with Weinstein in 1997 following an encounter in a hotel room with the producer during the Sundance Film Festival. The $100,000 payout was “not to be construed as an admission” by Weinstein, but intended to “avoid litigation and buy peace,” according to a legal document reportedly reviewed by the NYT.

On Twitter earlier this month, McGowan, 44, accused the movie mogul of rape and fired off a series of angry tweets at people she thinks covered for Weinstein.

Addressing all of her tweets to Jeff Bezos — the founder and CEO of Amazon —McGowan wrote, “I told the head of your studio that HW raped me. Over & over I said. He said it hadn’t been proven. I said I was proof.” (Roy Price, the head of Amazon Studios, resigned on Oct. 17 following allegations of sexual harassment against him.)

A spokesperson for Weinstein previously told PEOPLE in a statement that “any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein. Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances.”

Grindhouse Los Angeles Premiere - Inside and After Party
Credit: Jeff Vespa/WireImage

Harvey Weinstein and Rose McGowan

Asked why “nobody said anything,” Baldwin brought up the settlement to PBS News Hour. “Well, but what happened was that Rose McGowan took a payment of $100,000 and settled her case with him. And it was for Rose McGowan to prosecute that case.”

In later comments, Baldwin said of McGowan, “I had no idea, until now, that she had settled the case. And many people have asked the question — The New York Times, in fact, printed an article about this. This was online. And I found this very compelling. The New York Times wrote an article and said, do the settlement of these cases hurt the cause of exposing and bringing us to a place of real change? When women take money and are silenced by that money, even though they took the money and were silenced because they were told, beyond the money, it was the right thing for them to do, keep quiet, don’t make too many waves, it is going to hurt your career, when they do it, nonetheless, does it set back the cause of change? That’s an issue, I think.”

Baldwin is currently expecting his fourth child, a boy, with wife Hilaria. The couple are already parents to children Leonardo “Leo” Ángel Charles, 13 months, Rafael Thomas, 2, and Carmen Gabriela, 4. He’s also dad to 22-year-old daughter Ireland from his previous marriage to actress Kim Basinger.