Time Magazine Gives Credit Where Credit is Due

Editorial Board

For the past few months, the news has consisted of seemingly endless victims of sexual assault finally breaking their silence, coming forth with allegations against their abusers: men who have used their powerful positions to make unwanted sexual advances on women.

It should not come as a complete surprise, then, that in reference to these women and the movement which has ensued, Time Magazine selected “the silence breakers” as its people of the year for 2017.

It’s difficult to pinpoint when this movement of holding powerful people accountable for their actions all begun. According to Time, Tarana Burke started the #MeToo Twitter movement in 2006, which encourages victims of sexual assault to share their stories. The hashtag was brought into the spotlight by actress Alyssa Milano during October of this year, after various women started to speak up about Harvey Weinstein.

But this movement is not entirely new, as this issue has deep roots in our society. Women have been harassed and assaulted in the workplace by men who hold some kind of power over them for centuries, and many victims have found the courage to speak out. The difference is that recently, the accused are seeing actual consequences.

While we all must be wary of false accusations or equivalencies, it is important to remember that only about 2% of all rape accusations are given falsely, according to the FBI.

We at The Miter feel empowered by both this movement and Time’s decision to keep it in the spotlight. Sexual harassment and assault in the workplace occurs in all levels of society, no matter the industry, or socioeconomic class. Hopefully, all of the big names who are refusing to be silenced will not only empower people in every level of society to speak up, but drive every person to view and respond to sexual harassment and assault as unacceptable.