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#MeToo campaign shows breadth of sexual assault issue

24 Octubre 2017, 03:58 | Bibiana Flor

Actress Alyssa Milano triggered the #MeToo campaign on Twitter. MediaPunch REX

Actress Alyssa Milano triggered the #MeToo campaign on Twitter. MediaPunch  REX

Listen to the entire program here.

While living in Selma, Ala., during the late 1990s and early 2000s, Burke worked with young people, many of whom shared stories of sexual violence.

I mean, seriously, can most of us even count how many times we've had weird and creepy experiences with a sexual overtone involving men?

What are the solutions for lower-earning women (or men) who want to challenge sexual harassment but might not have the platform, financial ability or inclination to share their story so publicly?

Wells is the executive director of the Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence, a national nonprofit organization in the US founded by the business community to address domestic violence, including sexual assault, as a workplace issue. Kim Masters of the Hollywood Reporter talks about the case, a story she's pursued for some 20 years. I hope it's met with less resistance as time moves forward. I typed #MeToo what had to be a hundred times, before erasing it, closing out of Facebook and feeling ashamed of myself for doing so. In addition to the #MeToo, another hashtag has popped up. In France, there's #BalanceTonPorc, or "Squeal on your pig". You don't have to do a lot to interrupt it.

French journalist Sandra Muller started #BalanceTonPorc.

It was on October 16 that Ms. Milano urged the women fraternity through a tweet to come out with #MeToo posts in the social media if they had suffered sexual offence of any sort and thereby highlight the gravity of the issue across the world.

One of my family members and I were just recounting the time when she was 13 and some guy on a crowded Venice ferry pressed into her from behind with his erection. You're my type of woman.

I wondered, if I post this, will people think that I have been raped?

Within hours, the hashtag went viral.

For example, if a woman is harassed by an executive, a superior, or even merely a well-performing employee in the office, higher ups and human resources might be reluctant to side with the victim for fear of losing one of their star players.

While the #MeToo "movement" - if I may be allowed to call it that - was not without its detractors, had it really succeeded in letting people know that women were, in fact, oppressed, despite their social or national backgrounds?

Jian Ghomeshi, the host of Q, was one of Canada's most popular radio hosts.

It's doesn't cheapen assault to also discuss harassment.

What we have to remember is that each and every one of those numbers has a person behind it, who has a story, trauma and healing that they need to do.

And, she said, that doesn't account for all the street harassment she's endured. But later, as accusations piled up, she chose to come out of anonymity and share her experience. It is only after the campaign started that I realised the gross extent of sexual harassment in our society.

Ghomeshi was officially charged with four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcoming resistance by choking in 2014. These are women from all backgrounds and places. And children, if they are sexually harassed or abused it's primarily by adults. They won't tolerate Harvey Weinstein specifically, and hopefully they won't tolerate other powerful producers preying on actresses. To Carolyn Gilbert, a 63-year-old woman in Cincinnati, sexual harassment and assault are too common and too serious to address in a Facebook post.

Even now, even within the same entertainment industry occupied by the more famous women calling out Weinstein and his ilk, other women are still being ignored. But let's stick with the obvious for now: Being sexually assaulted and harassed is a troubling rite of passage for virtually every girl/woman, and it's nearly always a man who is the perpetrator. This isn't about the men who work hard every day to treat us as equals and fight to have other men do the same, although we thank you. Authorities say they're looking into it.

The #MeToo campaign is all the proof we need.

She said the Harvey Weinstein scandal is raising some eyebrows in Nigeria because few there would have thought an entire business empire could collapse as a result of sexual harassment revelations. Unfortunately, she framed the horrific, ever-increasing allegations against Weinstein as something that only happens to conventionally pretty girls.

And explaining the unique experience women have can't be done without including both sexual harassment and rape - which, again, are not the same thing.



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