As the world is discerning the #MeToo movement, more women are coming out with their stories of sexual harassment. Despite so many attempts, the condition of women in the world, most notably in India, remains unchanged. Women are still not granted the protection and safety they need and deserve.
There is a misconception among people that #MeToo campaign is only for women. Most people do not understand that men can be victims of sexual assault too.
Indian patriarchal society, expects men to be fierce and strong all the time and overlooks their emotional well being. They shouldn’t cry, no matter how deeply they are hurt.
One must understand that anyone can be harassed or assaulted irrespective of their gender.
After Tanushree Dutta, more women have come up with their MeToo stories. However, men experience sexual misconduct too, and Brendon Fraser’s #MeToo story is an appropriate example in this regard.
“I was blaming myself, and I was miserable”
Brendon Fraser’s MeToo moment came in June 2018. He asserted facing a sexual felony in 2003, by Philip Berk, former President of Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), which hosts the Golden Globe Awards. According to Fraser, Berk touched him inappropriately, which left him shattered and shocked.
However, Berk claimed that the touch was just a joke and he didn’t mean to hurt Fraser’s sentiments. Fraser’s team demanded a written apology from Berk, which he had provided.
But things didn’t go well for Fraser after that. He claims that the HFPA barely invited him for the Golden Globe Awards after the incident.
What Brendon Fraser experienced can’t be regarded as something new, because sexual misconduct is common for women as well as men.
Recently, Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan came up with his #MeToo story too. He revealed that he was harassed 25 years ago and he still feels angry when he thinks about the incident.
Another Bollywood actor Saqib Saleem, who featured in movies like Race 3, Dhishoom, Mere Dad Ki Maruti has also revealed that he was molested by a man when he was 21 years old. He said that even though he has moved on from the incident, it did hurt him.
People have different mental thresholds. Some tend to get over painful events eventually while some find it very difficult. The effect of sexual harassment on people is usually long-lasting.
These are just a few names, many voices are still unheard, many are still struggling with such traumas, and many have lost the confidence to ever recount what they went through.
The condition of the victims of sexual assault, who come out in front of the world is miserable. Due to the fear of ostracism and various other allegations, many people choose not to speak up about their grief publicly. Sometimes they are labelled as liars, who are hungry for fame and money, and at other times their voice is simply unheard.
Before arriving at any conclusion or blaming someone to be morally corrupt, one should carefully analyse the situation.