#MeToo

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There has been a recent spike in the number of women coming forward with sexual allegations against some of the world’s most powerful men. Sad, right? I recently had a conversation with someone about it. It starts off with him saying, “Did you hear about all of these sexual allegations in the media?” I say, “Yeah, it’s crazy.” He goes, “Yeah, they’re coming out every day saying someone assaulted them. Is this the new thing? That’s crazy.” My first thought was that I’m sure these women didn’t ask for this to happen, but I responded with, “Yeah, it’s actually sick that people are doing this and thinking they can get away with it. That’s the part I find crazy.” I feel like the sexual allegations have been getting similar feedback from Americans as have the police brutality claims and Kaepernick’s protests. Americans often don’t like when you point out the painful truth of what happens in this country, so somehow the message gets twisted. Instead of people admitting that black people are getting discriminated against, disproportionately killed by the police and work with Black Lives Matter to make a change, the media turns the BLM movement into a terrorist group whose sole mission is to riot and disrupt peaceful Americans. Instead of working with Colin Kaepernick to find ways to improve police relations within the black community, he’s labeled un-American and blackballed from the NFL. Instead of finding constructive ways to prevent sexual harassment and encourage women to come forward, people instead wonder why they waited so long to come forward in the first place and why these women decide to come out all at once. There’s seems to be some misguided energy here. What’s clear is that there’s a pattern of men in powerful positions who don’t understand the concept of no, and although it’s been mostly men of a certain stature who’ve been accused, this has been a common pattern of men of every culture and social status. If you can recall, a college student, who’s name is Brock Turner, served 3 months in jail for raping an unconscious woman near a dumpster at a frat party. The judge felt that anything more than that would be too harsh. The victim was asked questions like, “Were you sexually actively with your boyfriend at the time and what were you wearing?” I’m not seeing the connection here. Most of the time women come forward with accusations such as these, the thought of whether or not it’s true immediately comes to mind. Then she’s bombarded with questions about her appearance and actions. I was often told by my elders to watch what I wear and not to be “too friendly” with certain men, later on realizing why. Why are women responsible for controlling or preventing the actions of certain men? I believe that you should respect yourself at all times, but that doesn’t mean I should lessen or censor myself because some men are perverted. Seems to me like instead of having a censorship conversation with women, people should instead have a conversation with men about the difference between Yes and No. While the #MeToo campaign has been growing at an alarming rate, there’s still one major person that seems to be untouched when it comes to his own allegation issues. If you guessed that I’m talking about a certain orange, ignorant individual, then you guessed right. Our very own commander in chief has recently been accused by 19 different women of sexual harassment. He’s currently attempting to block a defamation lawsuit filed by one of his accusers in New York. This is the president. Bill Clinton was on his way to being impeached for much less. If this is the leader that we’re expected to look up to, how can we expect anything to change? I think the #MeToo campaign has been making great steps toward starting a conversation about things that we too often ignore. I just can’t believe, under any circumstance, that someone deserves to be sexual assaulted due to their apparel, behavior or anything related to that. I’m not a mother and I think the conversation about our daughters respecting themselves is imperative, but maybe it’s also worth it to start having conversations with our sons about not only respecting women, but also respecting the word and actions of No.

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Asia Vallier

Born in Lafayette, Louisiana. Raised in Houston, Texas. Poetry, music, theater, and movies have always intrigued me, and all things artistic live at the core of who I am. I've always kept a composition notebook at my side at all times whether that be for journaling, writing music or writing my ideas. At some point, I realized that what I was searching for to express myself had been there all along in my writing. I hope to inspire and invoke thought into each and every one of my readers. Blessings!

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