A sad way for a movement that exposed some of the country’s most powerful sexual predators to end.
#MeToo, the movement that opened the floodgates of sexual assault and harassment allegations against the rich and powerful, has met an unfortunate fate — it’s been hijacked by partisans hoping to score political points.
Targeting political opponents by trotting out alleged victims to make public claims of events transpiring decades ago, attorney’s lusting for their 15 minutes of fame, and fundraising opportunities have tainted an otherwise noble movement to put an end to long-standing abuse.
Now, those involved in what appear to be legitimate claims finally surfacing thanks to #MeToo are voicing concern over the movement’s sudden left turn.
The New York Times has a detailed report:
As accusations take on a partisan tint, activists and lawyers fear that such an evolution could damage a movement that has shaken Hollywood, Silicon Valley, media suites in New York and the hallways of Congress — and has taken down both a Democratic fund-raiser, Harvey Weinstein, and a conservative stalwart, Bill O’Reilly.
“There is a danger in this environment that unsophisticated individuals who have been abused by powerful people could be exploited by groups seeking partisan advantage, or by lawyers seeking a moment in the limelight,” said Debra Katz, a Washington lawyer who has brought sexual harassment cases against politicians from both parties.
The lawyers and operatives behind the most politically charged cases brush off those concerns.
Lisa Bloom, who initially represented serial abuser Harvey Weinstein, was raising money to pay women to come forward and publicly accuse Trump of sexual assault. When questioned, she said any such payment arrangement was standard practiced.
And a nonprofit group founded by the Democratic activist David Brock, which people familiar with the arrangements say secretly spent $200,000 on an unsuccessful effort to bring forward accusations of sexual misconduct against Mr. Trump before Election Day, is considering creating a fund to encourage victims to bring forward similar claims against Republican politicians.
Activists on the right are also involved. In November, the Trump-backing social media agitator Mike Cernovich offered to pay $10,000 for details of any congressional sexual harassment settlements, and said on Twitter that he would cover the expenses of “any VICTIM of a Congressman who wants to come forward to tell her story.” Shortly before posting that offer, a source provided Mr. Cernovich with a copy of a sexual harassment settlement that led in December to the resignation of Representative John Conyers Jr., Democrat of Michigan, until then the longest-serving member of the House.
A sad way for a movement that exposed some of the country’s most powerful sexual predators to end. But we all knew it was only a matter of time.DONATE
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