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Founder of MeToo Tarana Burke: Campaign is now "unrecognizable"



Tarana BurkeCopyright
Maria Aufmut / TED

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Tarana Burke told the TEDWomen MeToo conference to go a long way

The founder of the movement MeToo said that the campaign against sexual violence, which she began more than ten years ago, has become “unrecognizable” for her.

Speaking at TEDWomen in Palm Springs, Tarana Burke said the media reaction created the movement as a witch hunt.

“Suddenly, going to a center that survived sexual abuse is seen as a revengeful plot against men,” she said.

"The victims are heard, and then worn."

She sought to return to the original intention she had for MeToo when, in 2006, she wrote the words on a piece of paper as a way to start an action plan to do something about the sexual abuse she saw in her community.

This phrase has become a widely used hashtag last year in connection with the accusations made against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, but Ms. Burke says she believes the campaign is neglecting the ones she created to help.

“My vision of the movement Me Too is part of a collective vision of a world free from sexual violence,” she told delegates at the TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) conference.

“This movement is compared with four girls and with six boys who are sexually abused every year and who bring these wounds into adulthood,” she says.

Ms. Burke said that after such events as Brett Cavanaugh, elected to the Supreme Court, despite accusations of sexual misconduct, which he denied, American politicians seemed to be “retreating from the problem.”

“This movement was called a turning point, but after a few days I wake up feeling that all the evidence points to the opposite,” she said.

She ended the conversation, stating that the victims would not be forced to relive their trauma by talking about them, and she called for the continuation of the fight against "power and privilege."

“We must re-educate ourselves and our children in order to understand that power and privilege do not always have to be destroyed and accepted – it can be used to serve and build,” she said.


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