On Monday, actress Heather Lind, 34, alleged in a since deleted Instagram post that 93-year-old former US president George Bush sexually assaulted her – from his wheelchair four years ago.
“When I got the chance to meet George H W Bush four years ago to promote a historical television show I was working on, he sexually assaulted me while I was posing for a similar photo,” Lind wrote. “He didn’t shake my hand. He touched me from behind from his wheelchair with his wife Barbara Bush by his side. He told me a dirty joke.”
From The Express
The photo in question was taken at a private screening of TURN with the former president and Mrs Bush in March 2014 in Houston, Texas. Standing alongside Lind and the Bushes were her fellow TURN cast members Seth Numrich, Samuel Roukin, Ian Kahn, Kevin McNally and Burn Gorman.
“We were instructed to call him Mr President. It seems to me a President’s power is in his or her capacity to enact positive change, actually help people, and serve as a symbol of our democracy,” the post continued.
“He relinquished that power when he used it against me and, judging from the comments of those around him, countless other women before me.
“What comforts me is that I too can use my power, which isn’t so different from a president really. I can enact positive change. I can actually help people. I can be a symbol of my democracy. I can refuse to call him President, and call out other abuses of power when I see them. I can vote for a president, in part, by the nature of his or her character, knowing that his or her political decisions must necessarily stem from that character,” Ms Lind wrote.
And she claimed that she had shared the allegations against President Bush with her colleagues on TURN.
“My fellow cast mates and producers helped me that day and continue to support me. I am grateful for the bravery of other women who have spoken up and written about their experiences,” she said.
“And I thank President Barack Obama for the gesture of respect he made toward George H W Bush for the sake of our country, but I do not respect him. #metoo.”
Lind ended her post with the #metoo hashtag, something that’s gone viral so people can share allegations of sexual assault.
Recently, Lind received an apology from the former president.
“President Bush would never – under any circumstance – intentionally cause anyone distress, and he most sincerely apologises if his attempt at humour offended Ms Lind.”
Bush’s spokesman also said, “At age 93, President Bush has been confined to a wheelchair for roughly five years, so his arm falls on the lower waist of people with whom he takes pictures. To try to put people at ease, the president routinely tells the same joke – and on occasion, he has patted women’s rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner. Some have seen it as innocent; others clearly view it as inappropriate. To anyone he has offended, President Bush apologizes most sincerely.”