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Russell Simmons Is Banned From a West Village Yoga Studio

Emily Alford Sep 16, 2019. 17 comments

Russel Simmons, music producer, fashion titan, aspiring yogi, and man who has faced over a dozen allegations of rape and sexual misconduct, has been banned from a yoga studio in New York City’s West Village.

After trying and failing to launch the #NotMe movement in response to Me Too, Simmons retreated to Bali in 2018 amid allegations and lawsuits. But as of August, he was back in New York to party in the Hamptons, eat fancy sushi in Times Square, and ruin people’s zen at Modo Yoga Studio, which Simmons claims invited him to yoga then booted him when people didn’t want him there, according to Page Six:

“‘The management invited me, and then said that my presence had ‘triggered some members,’ Simmons told The Post from Bali.

The owners of Modo Yoga responded: ‘We do not pass judgment, gossip or comment on any of our students . . . However, when we receive complaints from students who are uncomfortable because of another student’s alleged conduct outside of Modo, we are put in a difficult position.’

‘I’m deeply disappointed and hurt by it,’ Simmons said. ‘Guilty by accusation, I don’t believe is a good way to go forward.’”

But in case you were worried that Simmons might be facing some actual repercussions in response to the dozen allegations, including one from a woman who says he threatened to sexually assault her son, he was also given a standing ovation at former Def Jam president Kevin Liles’s 300 Entertainment office, is looking into buying back the Phat Farm clothing label he once sold for $400 million, and is opening an “international school of yogic science.” Bankers, in particular, seem primed for Simmons’s return:

“My reception has been heartwarming,” Simmons added. “People wanted to throw dinners for me at their houses in the Hamptons . . . I went to a Southampton event and it was all the bankers — you could have blown up all the money in the world at one time — and not one person said anything negative to me.”

If stripping a man of his right to do yoga in the West Village studio of his choosing and then forcing him to party in the Hamptons with bankers isn’t punishment enough, it’s hard to say what further humiliations Me Too might foist upon these poor men. Forced into East Hampton to eat mediocre pâté with lawyers? People remaining seated while clapping? How far is too far ?

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