Our Youth

Let Them Speak: The New Form of Solidarity

A vendor sells #MeToo badges Nov. 12 during a protest march for survivors of sexual assault in Los Angeles. The wave of accusations of sexual harassment, misconduct and assault from Hollywood to Capitol Hill and many places in between in recent months has been described as a revolution, a moment and a time for national reckoning. (Photo: Catholic News Service/Lucy Nicholson, Reuters)

By Hannah Pierre-Louis

2017 ended on a note when women started coming forward about their sexual assault experiences and 2018 started on a note about sharing awareness and making sure that these women get their voices heard.

It took actress Alyssa Milano to tweet the hashtag #MeToo for a women’s revolution to start.

Pierre-Louis

The #MeToo movement was created in 2006 by Tarana Burke, an activist from Harlem. She created the online campaign in order to help survivors of sexual violence, especially targeted toward women of color who came from poor communities.

She wanted to help women get through the healing process and to let them know that it was not their fault that it happened to them.

According to her website, the movement’s ultimate goal is “to uplift radical community healing as a social justice issue” … and disrupt “all systems that allow sexual violence to flourish.”

After nearly a decade since #MeToo began, it reached some of the biggest names in the world and was highlighted by fashion choices at the 75th Golden Globe Awards.

On Jan. 7, almost every guest who attended the awards show wore black. Sure, black is known as a color of mourning, but in this case, it was the color of protest and solidarity.

The men at this event were criticized since they wore black to a black-tie event, making it look like they didn’t put much effort into raising awareness. But some actors were also seen wearing a pin that said “time’s up,” but not all of them knew the real reason behind it.

Time’s Up is an organization started by well-known actresses such as Reese Witherspoon and Tracee Ellis Ross to raise money for victims of sexual violence. The organization addresses systemic inequality and injustice in the workplace, whether it be farm fields or movie sets.

Some of the activists from Time’s Up were at the award ceremony and Burke attended the Golden Globes as a special guest.

As tough as it is to hear about these headlines, at least more survivors will know that they are not alone.


Pierre-Louis is a senior at St. Joseph H.S., Downtown Brooklyn.

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