Self-help guru Tony Robbins is facing the wrath of angry Twitter mobs after critical comments he made on March 15 towards the MeToo movement went viral on Saturday.
“If you use the #MeToo movement to try to get significance and certainty by attacking and destroying someone else… all you’ve done is basically use a drug called significance to make yourself feel good,” said Robbins during one of his seminars in San Jose, California, last month.
Robbins also told the story of a “very powerful man” who passed on hiring a female candidate even though she was the most qualified because she was too attractive and would be “too big a risk.”
The moment passed with little fanfare at the time, but came roaring back to public attention after the viral news site NowThis, released a video which included audience member Nanine McCool pushing back against Robbin’s comments.
“Certainly there are people who are using it for their own personal devices, but there are also a significant number of people who are using it not to relive whatever may have happened to them, but to make it safe for the young women,” she said. “So that they don’t have to feel unsafe.”
You can watch the encounter in the video below.
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) April 6, 2018
At various points when Robbins spoke, he was met by jeers from audience members, many of whom spent hundreds of dollars to attend his event.
Those jeers were even more ferocious online, as the mob quickly descended.
I’m a man. A heterosexual man. And what @TonyRobbins is saying in this is the biggest pile of dog shit I have ever seen. His friend didn’t hire a better qualified woman over 2 men because it was a “risk” that she was beautiful? GTFOH. Tony should have told him to control himself. https://t.co/YMtpA6bfrV
— rolandsmartin (@rolandsmartin) April 7, 2018
I've never understood the appeal of Tony Robbins…and it's always shocked me how many influential and powerful people rely on his advice… https://t.co/qk27i0VTas
— Yashar Ali ???? (@yashar) April 7, 2018
If your famous pal can’t trust himself &/or his coworkers to behave respectfully & professionally around a qualified woman just because she’s attractive then he has a personal or personnel problem it’s not a problem of the #Metoo movement @TonyRobbins https://t.co/desJnEb7Dv
— Daryl Hannah (@dhlovelife) April 6, 2018
Many issues, but at the end he says dozens of high powered men have told him they don't hire more qualified women b/c they're attractive so they "can't have them around." That's the woman's fault? Perhaps the life coach could coach those dudes about keeping it in their pants? https://t.co/Z3XBpwjw5p
— Sarah Colonna (@sarahcolonna) April 7, 2018
I was made aware of this video BEFORE I ever saw it because Tony Robbins people reached out to do damage control within 24 hours. They wanted to “give me context” apparently. I don’t need any. I have eyes. The full video is 11 mins. And it’s gross. Bravo to this woman. https://t.co/gjbm9GF1Mz
— Tarana (@TaranaBurke) April 7, 2018
So @TonyRobbins has had "a dozen CEO-level men" – probably all middle-aged, predominantly white men – tell him they won't hire attractive women because it's "too risky." Well isn't that some twisted, woman-blaming bullshit… #MeToo https://t.co/JE5DXQ7sIk
— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) April 7, 2018
Tony Robbins is hugely influential, and I wish he'd shut up and really listen to what women are saying. No woman looks for "significance" by being an assault survivor: they are looking for justice, fairness, opportunity — all the things that Robbins claims to stand for. https://t.co/wZLqPLhCla
— Ronald Klain (@RonaldKlain) April 7, 2018
Tony Robbins told a story about how the #MeToo movement made a man afraid to hire an attractive woman.
How in the world could you tell that story believing women need to change and not the man? https://t.co/iK0KR6bdul
— Nick Jack Pappas (@Pappiness) April 7, 2018
Robbins posted an apology Sunday morning on Facebook for his choice of words.
“At a recent Unleash the Power Within (UPW) event in San Jose, my comments failed to reflect the respect I have for everything Tarana Burke and the #MeToo movement has achieved,” he wrote. “I apologize for suggesting anything other than my profound admiration for the #MeToo movement. Let me clearly say, I agree with the goals of the #MeToo movement and its founding message of ‘empowerment through empathy,’ which makes it a beautiful force for good.”