PRESS RELEASE

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Women Around the World Warn of the Excesses of the #MeToo Movement

WASHINGTON / January 29, 2018 – Numerous leading women around the world – including media personalities, professors, and commentators – have spoken out against the excesses of the #MeToo movement. Stop Abusive and Violent Environments (SAVE) has compiled these statements for the benefit of lawmakers who may be considering legislation designed to address workplace sexual harassment (1).

These women come from all points on the political spectrum. Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth Bartholet commented, for example, “My fairness concerns with the #MeToo phenomenon include the ready acceptance in many cases of anonymous complaints, and of claims made by women over conflicting claims by men, to terminate careers without any investigation of the facts.” (2)

Following are a few of the many statements critical of #MeToo:

  • Julia Hartley-Brewer: The #MeToo “hashtag claims to be about empowering women to speak out when actually it is turning women into perpetual victims.”
  • Wendy Kaminer: “#MeToo is the unthinking woman’s anti-harassment crusade.”
  • Faith Moore:  #MeToo “is a betrayal of the women who’ve actually been raped or assaulted.”

Women from other countries have expressed their concerns in even stronger terms. These are a few examples:

  • Rita Panahi, Australia: “My greatest concern is that the #MeToo phenomenon creates a toxic narrative that casts every male as a potential predator and every female as a perpetual victim.”
  • Margaret Atwood, Canada: “In times of extremes, extremists win. Their ideology becomes a religion, anyone who doesn’t puppet their views is seen as an apostate, a heretic or a traitor, and moderates in the middle are annihilated.”
  • Nathalie Rothschild, Sweden: The #MeToo is “normalizing the kind of mob behavior that is the most negative aspect of internet culture, and how it is eroding the presumption of innocence.”

SAVE emphasizes that victims of sexual misconduct should feel free to speak out, they should be treated respectfully, and their claims should be investigated objectively and thoroughly (3). But #MeToo should not be allowed to turn into a modern-day vigilante movement that ignores due process and eradicates the presumption of innocence.

Citations:

  1. http://www.saveservices.org/camp/metoo-notme/
  2. http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2018/1/16/bartholet-metoo-excesses/
  3. http://www.saveservices.org/sexual-assault/investigations/

SAVE (Stop Abusive and Violent Environments) is working for effective and fair solutions to sexual assault, sexual harassment, and domestic violence: www.saveservices.org