“The clock has run out on sexual assault, harassment, and inequality in the workplace. It's time to do something about it.”
2018 has become the year of defaming famous men in Hollywood. It began in late 2017 when film producer Harvey Weinstein was accused of assaulting over 60 women who were in his films. Since then, 42 men have been accused of sexual harassment and assault. While many of them are unclear, many of the men had hard evidence against them. A few men have come forward and admitted what they did, however, some have not apologized for what they have done.
Because of this breakthrough, famous actors, both men and women, have come forward and shared news about a new movement called, #TimesUp. What is #TimesUp? #TimesUp is a, “Unified call for change from women in entertainment for women everywhere. From movie sets to farm fields to boardrooms alike, we envision nationwide leadership that reflects the world in which we live.” This movement also addresses the inequality and injustice that has existed for decades against women in the workplace.
Let’s go over some statistics. On the TimesUp website, it is shown that 1 in 3 women ages 18 to 34 have been sexually harassed at work, and 72% of those women said that they did not report it. Nearly half of working women in the U.S. have said that they have experienced harassment in the workplace. Lastly, more than one-third of the world countries do not have any laws prohibiting sexual harassment as work, which leaves nearly 235 million working women vulnerable in the workplace.
TimeUp isn’t just focusing on harassment/assault in the workplace, they also focus on the inequality of women as a whole in the workplace, primarily in film. With that, from 2007 to 2016, 4% of top-grossing directors were female. Just 7 were women of color, and 1 in 1,114 directors across 1,000 movies was Latina.
Why is this movement important? It’s important because women are finally being heard! How many times do we must sit and watch silently as we hear about famous men harassing and assaulting women all because they know they have the power over them. Knowing that these women are young and some naive, these men are manipulating their power and position to get women who work for them to do what they want, all the while knowing they won’t do anything. Not anymore, every day we see on the news of another man that has been accused.
While this is a very important and empowering movement, and I believe in it wholeheartedly, it has proven some flaws. We all remember how many actresses and actors wore black at the Golden Globes in protest and in part of the #MeToo movement (a movement similar to #TimesUp, but it is for women standing up and opening up about their sexual assault/harassment). While this was amazing and powerful in seeing the amount of people coming together to show solidarity against sexual assault/harassment, there were flaws. We are all familiar with the famous filmmaker, Woody Allen, who he himself, has been accused many times for assault/harassment and who has an alarming obsession with barley legal relationships in his movies. With that, many actors/actresses who wore black to the Golden Globes have worked with Woody Allen, (Kate Winslet, Scarlett Johansson, Rachel McAdams, and Blake Lively). They all wore black, have spoken out about how things must change and have condemned men for assaulting and harassing women, yet they have worked with a known assaulter. They have even received much criticism and backlash from the internet since the Golden Globes, and it continues now. (Source)
Another flaw in this movement, sadly, is how rapidly men are being accused. I am most definitely not saying that each woman coming out and saying someone assaulted her is false. We should never ignore someone coming forward with an accusation of assault/harassment. But it has come up to the surface, something a lot of people believe, that at the rate of men being accused, it seems like we are just trying to get rid of all the men and accuse them of assault. That, in my opinion, is not what this movement is about.
We will always continue to hear more about those coming forward with their stories and we will continue to catch those who have done wrong. #TimesUp is an important movement and it’s time that women stand up.
“No more silence. No more waiting. No more tolerance for discrimination, harassment or abuse.”