The #MeToo movement has been a powerful and important force for holding men accountable for sexual harassment and assault. I was proud that our Bold TV reporting caused a U.S. congresswoman to donate $6,800 in campaign funds to support #MeToo after we notified her office she had received donations from the disgraced Bikram yoga instructor accused of multiple counts of sexual assault — allegations he denied (though a court ordered him to pay a court awarded $6.5 million in punitive damages and $924,000 in compensatory damages).
Last year, I personally benefited from #MeToo and saw a vendor suddenly pay me his long past-due contractual obligation–after he’d dragged his feet for months–when I said he couldn’t treat women this way in light of public accountability.
Yet even while I support the #MeToo movement’s aims, I also believe in upholding our justice system. We’ll delve more, in a bipartisan conversation, at 10am this Friday live on Bold TV about the specifics around the sexual assault and harassment allegations against Brett Kavanaugh. Regardless of where you fall on this topic, I hope it will spark a massive societal shift in how we deal with these sensitive issues. I discussed this in a CNN oped today about the Kavanaugh allegations.
That these women say they experienced sexual misconduct and were too ashamed, or too intoxicated, to hold the perpetrators accountable is heartbreaking. Their allegations should be met with empathy and a societal push to ensure that any victim of sexual abuse can easily and transparently report sex crimes without fear, shame or retaliation …However, these women have yet to produce serious evidence to support their serious allegations. They lack the vital components that Gretchen Carlson described to me in an interview on Bold TV and in her new book: evidence, documentation and witnesses. Carlson, who successfully challenged harassment by a former employer, knows that these are the best shields of truth against the evils of misogyny and abuse.
Watch the video with Carlson’s important message about victims protecting themselves by gathering evidence and sharing their stories with witnesses on Bold TV below:
And when women do report they’ve been a victim of a sexual crime, we need to ensure that their evidence is promptly processed and justice is swiftly served–something that too often doesn’t occur.
Photo by mikecogh
Carrie Sheffield is the founder of Bold. She is passionate about storytelling to empower and connect others. A founding POLITICO reporter, Carrie contributed on political economy at Forbes and wrote editorials for The Washington Times. After earning a master’s in public policy from Harvard University, she managed credit risk at Goldman Sachs and researched for American Enterprise Institute scholar Edward Conard. She earned a B.A. in communications at Brigham Young University and completed a Fulbright fellowship in Berlin.