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Will more people now listen to child star Corey Feldman's story?

A recent national news report refers to its subject matter as "Hollywood's other dark secret."

We would ask readers to try to temporarily put themselves in the shoes of Corey Feldman, ex-child actor and current musician. Feldman has for decades now been somewhat akin to a voice out of the wilderness lamenting a sordid reality that he personally knows and that virtually the rest of the world largely professes ignorance about.

Namely, that is what he alleges is the persistent and widespread sexual abuse of adolescent male actors in the entertainment industry, often by powerful principals who have remained immune from criminal and civil liability.

Many people have questioned Feldman's claims over the years, with some even dismissing them outright. When Feldman delved into the abuse of young male actors on a talk show several years ago, Barbara Walters responded that he was "damaging an entire industry."

Clearly, Feldman has never had such a goal. The personal horrors he says that he and many other similarly placed children have endured relate to conduct engaged in by select individuals. Through various means (including non-disclosure agreements, overt threats and intimidation, shame-based tactics and flat denials supported by other powerful individuals in the industry), those people have persistently skirted accountability for actions that destroy lives.

Feldman doesn't mince words. Hollywood is a place, he says, "where adults have more direct and inappropriate connection with children than probably anywhere in the world."

Although some people have undoubtedly questioned that claim, is it not reasonable to believe that many more reflective individuals are now accepting it as true in the wake of recent industry-related abuse scandals involving powerful people?

Feldman has never shied from publicly relating the pain that he and others have endured owing to a problem that is now being examined under a progressively harsh light.

Perhaps the bravery he and others have shown by standing tall in acknowledging their abuse will help to erase what another former child actor has termed "a power dynamic that feels impossible to overcome."

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