Rise up, create safer world

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Rise up, create safer world


Him too? No way. I’ve seen all of his movies. He can’t be one of the bad guys.

Did that bring anyone to mind?

These past few months have brought down big names we never would have suspected of any wrongdoing. And it’s about time the monsters lurking in plain sight were outed.

Though Cosby was first, the national conversation really began with Weinstein. And for good reason. Weinstein operated as a charitable man with a vision, donating to various causes, staying active in politics, finding independent directors such as Quentin Tarantino, and bringing new and groundbreaking ideas to the big screen. Harvey painted himself as a genius and a friend to the little guy, even going so far as to attend the first Women’s March. Even though rumors of Harvey’s behavior persisted, Hollywood loved him. And he used that to his advantage, spending years victimizing women he held power over.

Since his exposure, word has gotten out that the story of Harvey Weinstein was a common one. Celebrities and politicians alike who used their positions for predatory purposes have found their legacies shattered and careers destroyed. And I say good riddance to them.

And then there’s Moore.

The Alabama special election was the first example of the political world in the post MeToo era. It seemed like your typical deep South election, with mudslinging and a Republican victory inevitable. And then came the allegations. According to the alleged victims, as District Attorney, Moore preyed on underage girls, which was an open secret in the community. The allegations remain hotly debated, but one thing is for sure: they exposed us to a dark underbelly of our society.

What allegedly happened with Roy Moore could have happened in any community, including ours. The idea of a predatory and powerful man preying on the weak and powerless, only to have his actions covered up for by the community at large because he’s viewed as a good man is not too far fetched. In fact, we saw it happen in that very election. Though Roy Moore ultimately lost, many supported him despite believing the allegations simply because he was in their corner.

The fact of the matter is, we as a society continue to fail victims of sexual misconduct regardless of gender or age. On average, according to RAINN, there are 321,500 victims of rape and sexual assault in the United States each year. One out of every six women has been the victim of sexual assault, and one of every ten rape victims is male. The fact is, sexual assault is happening everywhere, and the perpetrators are among us.

This is not necessarily cause for alarm. Rather, it’s cause for awareness. The next Harvey Weinstein could be hiding in any of our communities. When alleged victims speak up, listen.

While due process is important and should be protected at all costs, it is important for accusers to be heard.

Our society created a world where sexual misconduct is so rampant, the MeToo movement was necessary.

And now, in the post MeToo world, it’s our responsibility to create a safer world for everyone.