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We Live in a Man's World

Akhila Vemuri

“17,700,000 women have reported a sexual assault since 1998.”

In the modern world, for women, it seems inevitable they will be sexual harssaed at least once in their lifetime. Many of these women and girls keep these terrifying encounters to themselves, afraid of the backlash they will face. It is a sad reality, but we do live in man’s world. Without things like the ERA, equal right amendment, women and girls are at a disadvantage, especially when it comes to rape and sexual harassment cases.

The Me Too movement is call to action. It shows that anyone who is a victim is not alone, and victims have a voice with people willing to listen. The Me too movement started out with a bang -- many women began to speak up and many men in high positions in companies began to step down and resign when these women spoke up.

The Me too movement had a huge victory when the women of USA gymnastics community came together to take down former team doctor Lawrence G. Nassar. “Nassar sentenced to an additional 40 to 125 years in prison on Monday for molesting young female gymnasts, capping weeks of horrifying testimony from nearly 200 victims about his decades of abuse,”(Reuters, February 18, 2018.) This was a huge victory, because not only was justice served, but USA gymnastics has voiced that they will be more viligate and proactive about sexual abuse and physical abuse in the sport.

I give the Me Too movement credit for starting the prosecution of Nassar. If it was not for the movement, former Olympic gymnast Mckayla Maroney would not have voiced what happened to her. Furthermore, ten years ago, the youngest Olympic gymnast by the name of Dominique Moceanu, began to voice the abuse within the USA gymnastics. Although she began to voice the abuse within the sport many years ago, no one listened to her. While I am grateful that Nassar is facing more than 125 years in jail, I cannot help to think what if people listened to Dominique Moceanu, all the young girls that could have be saved from a traumatizing experience.

While there is a lot of support for the Me too movement, there is a lot of backlash. Many women still face victim blaming and receive backlash for speaking up about sexual harassment. Mckayla Maroney faced backlash for speaking up at Nassar’s hearing, she could be facing a fine for up to 100,000 dollars from USA gymnastics. While the Me too movement grows, there is still a big stigma about women speaking up about rape and sexual harassment.

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