How C.C. Sees It: #metoo

by Carly Cundiff

Ten months ago, women of all colors, backgrounds, religions, occupations and cities descended upon Washington D.C. It was the day after the inauguration of our 45th president of the United States, and these women were not happy.

They donned their pink knit hats by the thousands and marched up to Donald Trump’s new home. They thrust signs towards Trump’s windows and advocated for women’s rights, reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights and numerous other causes. They stayed outside in the cold January air for hours, and not a single person was arrested.

Numerous other smaller protests took place in all 50 states and on all seven continents. The message was simple: women need to be heard.

Ten months later, we are still shouting the same message.

I was not surprised when the allegations against Harvey Weinstein were confirmed, just like I was not surprised when thousands of women, old and young, started posting #metoo to say that they had also been victims of sexual assault or harassment.

What I was shocked by was how many people were shocked by the sheer number of women and men who had been harassed in the past. The sheer number of people coming out with their stories wasn’t shocking to me, but maybe that is because I have been raised in a culture where topics like this are shoved under a rug.

Ask any woman. Ask your mother. Ask your sisters. Go ahead and ask me. We will tell you stories about sexual harassment and assault that occur to us. We will tell you about creepy bosses and strange professors and random strangers on the street. We will tell you how we laughed off the comments in the moment, but how they stuck with us for months and years afterwards.

Those men and women who marched 10 months ago knew about this. In a way, I think we all knew that this was happening, but we couldn’t be bothered to say anything. We couldn’t take a moment to stand against the predatory men who make comments like this every single day. Weinstein is an extreme case with many victims, and most likely the vast majority of perpetrators are not like Weinstein. They are like the guy who makes your coffee in the morning or your creepy uncle. People that everyone acknowledges are a little odd towards women, but no one wants to do anything about it.

My Harvey Weinstein owned the frozen yogurt shop that I worked at my senior year of high school. My friend’s Harvey Weinstein was one of her professors. My mom’s Harvey Weinstein was a guy she met at a party.

Harvey Weinsteins are everywhere, and it is up to each and every one of us to help break down this system of fear and oppression against women. Ten months ago women had the right idea. We organized and made a message and no one could possibly ignore it.

Now, we can’t ignore women as they share their truths and point out a flaw in their system.