Comedian and actor Russell Brand recently became the latest celebrity to see his career derailed by unproven allegations of inappropriate conduct.
Despite his unequivocal denial of his accusers’ claims, YouTube has taken the step of demonetizing his popular channel and his talent agency dropped him as a client on the day that the claims were first published.
Some prominent figures believe Brand should face even more consequences based on the anonymous allegations, including a member of the United Kingdom Parliament. Conservative Party MP Carline Dinenage — the chair of the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee — reportedly called for the video-sharing platform Rumble to similarly cut off the entertainer’s monetization.
The company responded with a clear rejection of the demand, declaring that it is “deeply inappropriate and dangerous that the UK Parliament would attempt to control who is allowed to speak on our platform or to earn a living from doing so.”
Actor Laurence Fox echoed that sentiment in a social media post championing the principle of free speech and calling for Dinenage’s resignation.
A statement by Laurence Fox
‘Free speech and the presumption of innocence are the cornerstones of a Liberal democracy, both have been completely undermined’@cj_dinenage must resign.@LozzaFox | @thereclaimparty pic.twitter.com/6JUS5Ui9ww
— The Reclaim Party (@thereclaimparty) September 21, 2023
Brand has made news in recent months for his outspoken criticism of the mainstream media, COVID-19 mandates and other hot-button issues, which has prompted the theory that the current effort to dismantle his career is rooted in political retribution.
“Criticize the drug companies, question the war in Ukraine, and you can be pretty sure this is going to happen,” asserted former Fox News Channel personality Tucker Carlson.
Megyn Kelly, another former Fox News host, urged those on both sides of the issue to refrain from making any premature judgments.
“You know, not to take anything away from these reporters, but I think that there should be a higher standard before we take a man’s living away,” she said. “However, we cannot go from the absurdity of believe all women, which was never the right way, into the absurdity of believe no women. And that’s what we’re now doing.”
For his part, Brand released a video in which he vigorously denied the “astonishing, rather baroque attacks” leveled against him.
“The relationships I had were absolutely, always consensual,” he asserted.