#MeToo sparks conversation about sexual harassment in Columbia
COLUMBIA - #MeToo started as a tweet and turned into an international discussion on sexual harassment.
Columbia resident Macy Young says, since the social media campaign began, she’s talked with a lot of people about the topic.
“It’s a double-edged sword,” she said. “It’s tragic to hear all these stories, but it’s exciting to get the conversation going.”
Young said she hopes it will be a learning experience for people who haven’t been personally affected.
“Little girls should know the world we live in,” said Young.
A tweet by actress Alyssa Milano started a viral avalanche Sunday, getting more than 68 thousand comments.
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 quickly spread across all social platforms.
Some women are saying the movement has given them a powerful voice.
It took me 4 years to finally say what happened to me because i was ashamed. Its not your fault it will never be your fault #MeToo.— #patsnation (@LatinSnowBunny) October 20, 2017
I don't owe anyone my story. But disrespectful behavior towards women, especially sexual harassment/assault, needs to end now. #MeToo ???— Gabbie Mont (@gabbiemont) October 20, 2017
Sexual harassment can happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime! Never blame the victim and never be silenced #MeToo— ??Diana?? (@hyenaspark66) October 20, 2017
Milano's tweet wasn't the first time "Me Too" was used in connection to sexual harassment.
Tarana Burke started an official movement using the same ‘Me Too’ phrase in connection with her organization Just Be Inc. about 10 years ago.
Columbia counselor Ric Doubet said the social media campaign is giving voices to people who might not have shared their story because of societal pressures.
“There’s a lot of shame and guilt that comes with it,” Doubet said. “It’s a sense of responsibility for the incident, it’s part of what keeps them from coming forward.”
Doubet said society as a whole needs to recognize behaviors that can lead to harassment, especially men.
“There’s a lot at stake here and us men need to take a stand,” Doubet said. “Enough is enough."