I am not avoiding these clips out of support for Gibson, but because there’s something so inherently disgusting about the tapes – the way the actor all-too-easily drops racial slurs and shows no shame about violence towards women – that immediately triggers a resistant response in my brain. I understand why folks like EW’s Owen Gleiberman are mesmerized by the recordings and Gibson’s self-delusion. But unlike other private celebrity conversations gone public (Alec Baldwin’s voicemail to his daughter, Christian Bale’s on-set rant), this one seems so ultimately unforgivable, vile, and downright scary that I’m not sure I could listen and then just go about my day after peeking inside such a dysfunctional – and dangerous – relationship. This is one private conversation that I don’t want to be a part of, even if I feel it’s necessary for us all to be aware of it.
I imagine I’m not the only one – who else can’t bear to listen?
Also: Owen Gleiberman: Mel Gibson and the tale of the tape