to be heard, one must listen

I’m starting to like this whole blog thing more than I thought. I pay $50 a year to have my very own shiny website and I finally like how it looks. Even though my mom and my professors are the only people who glance at this, I have something of a voice, even if it’s not listened to very often.

I wrote an article about being heard at the end of my absolutely incredible summer internship. (Which I posted last week on my updated work page!) I wrote about journalism and stories and I could go on and on about how great it all is, but in light of Harvey Weinstein, Louis C.K., Kevin Spacey, Terry Richardson, etc. etc. etc. having a voice is almost not enough.

Anyone affected by sexual assault absolutely deserves every single platform available to share their story if they want to. However, it doesn’t seem like there is enough focus on how difficult that is to initiate in the first place. I can’t even begin to imagine the bravery and courage it would require for a victim of sexual assault to tell their story. For some perspective, DOZENS of women claimed Bill Cosby sexually assaulted them over the course of decades and still the judge declared a mistrial in July after the jury spent six days deliberating. I do understand how difficult something like sexual assault is to prove in the courts, but I still find it absolutely ridiculous to believe all those women are lying.

Imagine for a moment being one of those women and being told “Well, no one will believe you anyways.” Having a voice should honestly be enough. If one woman is strong enough to stand alone and say ‘this happened to me’ as a society, we should listen, have a conversation, and try to understand. The fact that victims require strength in numbers is a massive indicator on how the value of human life is skewed.

Those women dared to speak out against one of the most influential and respected celebrities of our time and a lot of people don’t believe the allegations because of Cosby’s artificially constructed public image. People seem to forget that the character of a comedian or actor or musician is far more important than their work. The world is full of equally, if not more, creative people who are actually decent human beings.

For another perspective; Amber Rose did an interview on one of my favorite podcasts last year regarding this topic. Don’t let the title scare you, it’s good to be openminded.


1 thought on “to be heard, one must listen

  1. Current research estimates that between 50% to 80% of women will experience some form of sexual assault during their lifetime. The reason the number is hard to quantify is because of the shame in reporting that many women are subjected to, preventing many from coming forward.

    True, we need to start having more discussions about this and really start listening, but we also need to demand change within our criminal justice system, making it easier for victims to come forward and not feel re-victimized when reporting.

    We also need to remember that men are victims of sexual assault every day, and we need to ensure that their voices are heard.


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