The hashtag #MeToo started trending worldwide after a call to action from actress Alyssa Milano. Its aim is to give the world an idea of how unfortunately common and frequent sexual assault is & to remove or at least reduce the stigma around speaking up about sexual assault.
If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet. pic.twitter.com/k2oeCiUf9n
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) October 15, 2017
#MeToo is a hashtag started in response to women’s sexual assault stories. Numerous Hollywood actresses spoke up accusing Harvey Weinstein of The Weinstein Company of sexual assault during their careers. As a result, women with similar and different experiences of sexual harassment have spoken up via the hashtag to raise awareness about the seriousness of the matter.
The sad thing is, sexual assault is so normalized that as of last week, over half a million women had shared personal sexual assault stories via the hashtag on different social media platforms.
Celebrities like Gabrielle Union and Lady Gaga too hopped on the hashtag to share their personal sexual assault stories and show support to women who’d sadly been through the same. Locally, TV presenter Anita Nderu, radio host Adelle Onyango, actress Lupita Nyong’o, her sister Zawadi & blogger Muthoni Gitau are among those who have shared their personal stories.
Sexual violence & harassment can happen to anyone at anytime anywhere.
— Gabrielle Union (@itsgabrielleu) October 15, 2017
Women are usually afraid to speak up about assault for fear of not being believed, fear of being judged, fear of being excluded, fear of your reputation getting ruined and general fear as well.
With the large amount of women opening up and speaking about the topic, there are people who have labelled them as liars, pretenders or attention seekers. The truth is though that a large amount of women worldwide have experienced sexual assault.
It’s great that now women can comfortably open up about their personal experiences with sexual assault. Hopefully, in the future women will continue to be able to open up about sexual assault experiences.