With a few more sexual allegations each week eventually all of these cold snowballs to the forehead could start an avalanche of allegations, confrontations, complaints, and lawsuits. If I were a chairman of a major corporation hoping to end out my days in comfort and respect with a history of half-forgotten slap and tickle or worse, I’d be worried. The same goes for politicians resting on their laurels. They may soon find themselves resting on the hot seat. Exit strategies are soon forgotten when the ship starts going down.
The pain of sexual abuse lingers along with the memories. Those who caused the pain should begin shaking in their boots.
When victims speak up, some people, try to shift the attention away. The Huffinton Post writes, “Roy Moore, the embattled Republican Senate candidate in Alabama, on Wednesday revived the anti-gay rhetoric that first thrust him into the spotlight years ago by accusing LGBT people and others of coordinating a “conspiracy” to discredit him and undermine his campaign.” This reminds me of the old joke. About a ship’s captain who refused to change a log entry because it was the truth even though it showed the first mate in a bad light, which he didn’t deserve. The next day the captain had a fit when he saw the mate’s entry “At eight bells the captain came to the bridge sober.” A friend of mine scoffed when I brought up Roy Moore’s name . . . and that was even before half a dozen women stepped up and accused him. How much attention can you shift away?
Some people still don’t get it. The Washington Post ran this piece “Ex-MLB player Bret Boone mocks sexual harassment scandals as ‘liberal BS’.” Perhaps, the former second baseman from the Seattle Mariners was a life-time athlete who always had scads of sexual partners, or perhaps like many people with more power than skill he couldn’t get to first base without a little help. Boone has since tweeted his apology, but even his apology joked about sexual harassment. He was just joking. I wonder how many people laughed with him and not at him.
Tara Golshan writing in the article “What we know about sexual harassment in America” says, “Shame, fear, and cultural norms all allow sexual harassment to go under-reported.” I was watching an old episode of the sitcom Mom last night. The single mom Christy stood up at her AA meeting and confessed to being a afraid, ashamed, and embarrassed when she was sexually harassed. It takes guts to stand up and announce to the world you’ve been abused. You never know if you will be believed, which is why most women don’t say anything and perpetrators go on and hurt others.
Toxic workplaces — where harassment, stereotyping and bullying occur — are driving away women and people of color, undercutting technology companies’ efforts to increase diversity and costing an estimated $16 billion a year. – www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2017/04/27/toxic-workplaces-technology-women-minorities-retention/100977038/
The problem is far worse than celebrities and managers. According to Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants — CWA union, “For too long unacceptable sexual innuendo, harassment advances, and assault have been a silent epidemic in our society and certainly on our planes.” I sexual misconduct can happen anywhere, but it is more costly to business. I like the warning issued in an Associated Press article, “Failing to address harassment allegations can cost employers.”
The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission estimates that 75 percent of all workplace harassment incidents go unreported. Many women and men don’t report incidents because they fear retaliation plus some think they won’t be believed. However, as more and more allegations are made public, victims may begin to wonder and consider their options. The Pacific Northwest could be a hotbed of complaints especially in a region of high tech industries where many women and LGBT people feel they may have been hurt career-wise by not giving in to the powers that be. How much longer will it take for victims to stand up and accuse non-celebrities and start taking down the people that have harassed and bullied their way through life and up the corporate ladder? Bullies and criminals prepare . . . start shaking . . .
There is strength in numbers and support. When victims of sexual abuse see others taking a stand, many more accusers may step forward.