Is It Time for Truth & Reconciliation Around Sexual Violence?

Sexual abuse and violence is out of the closet and we are beginning to talk about an issue that has long been hidden. One of the advantages of having a president who bragged about his own misconduct, is that we are all forced to address these issues.  We all remember the Donald Trump’s words in the “Access Hollywood” tape.

It begins with audio of Mr. Trump speaking with Billy Bush, the former “Access Hollywood” host, on a bus. In the section that attracted the most attention, Mr. Trump referred to kissing women and grabbing them by their genitals without their consent.

Mr. Trump: Yeah, that’s her. With the gold. I better use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her. You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.

Mr. Bush: Whatever you want.

Mr. Trump: Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.

Donald Trump was elected to the presidency, even after these comments were reported. Yet, the times are changing as more and more women come out and acknowledge, #metoo, and more men come out to believe and support them.

Despite strong support from President Trump, Roy Moore was defeated in Alabama. Doug Jones became the first Democrat in a generation to win a Senate seat in Alabama, beating Republican Roy Moore amid a firestorm of allegations that the GOP candidate had sexually abused teens.

If we want to end sexual abuse, we have to do more than defeat the men who abuse women. There needs to be a real dialogue between the men who are sexually abusive and the women who are abused by them. We’ve focused more on helping the women get the support and have the courage to step forward and acknowledge and talk about what happened to them. [Read more…]