Ever since the #metoo movement started, a welcome change has been happening across the nation.
People are finally starting to realize that sexual assault, harassment and abuse is an issue. Something that was once swept under the rug, that was once ignored and denied, now has a spotlight on it.
Things still are not perfect, though. Commenters online still accuse survivors who are speaking out of making up their stories for fame or attention, not realizing how hard it is for them to talk about these subjects and tell their stories. There is no monetary amount in the world that can make up for the emotional pain and trauma it takes to relive a moment like that, and the negative attention is just as plentiful as the positive attention for those speaking out.
That is why we want to commend those survivors who are telling their story. It takes so much bravery to do that, and by doing so, they are ensuring that it does not happen to someone else. Whether it be the brave women who gave victim impact statements at the hearing of serial abuser Larry Nassar or all of the survivors telling their story with a hashtag, they are all making a difference.
This is not just something that happens in Hollywood, or in sports arenas. It happens all over, in every profession, at every level.
Every story deserves to be listened to. As hard as it is to come to the realization that sexual harassment and assault are more widespread than one may have thought, we need to open our eyes and realize it is a problem. These conversations are long overdue and need to be had.
Even though it started last year, the #metoo movement still has the momentum and strength it did back then. Hopefully this continues. Hopefully those who have power over another person continue to realize that they will be caught if they take advantage of them.
As many have already expressed, hopefully one day, we will not have to say #metoo. Even one person having been sexually harassed or assaulted is one too many.
Social media gets a lot of flack, but the #metoo movement has been extraordinarily important in getting people’s voices heard. Those who did not know they had power before now know that there is at least a chance they will be listened to, and that they have more supporters than they know.
At The Daily Eastern News, our motto is “Tell the Truth and Don’t be Afraid.” This is exactly what these brave survivors are doing by speaking up. And the truth will come out.