The outcome of Harvey Weinstein's case is supposed to be a victory for women in particular who have long since quietly rallied against what for many young and old, has been the pervasiveness of sexual harassment and rape in the office and outside of work that has been allowed to continue because "it was just the way things are done," or "it was no big deal," or "no one will believe you," or "it was the way you were dressed or what you were drinking" or let it go, or it's your career at risk."
To be clear, getting anyone like Weinstein locked away for his crimes IS a victory for both women and men alike, but does this push the needle forward for those women who are neither white, rich, work a white collar job, or have citizenship? Sadly, I don't think it has as much as people would like you to believe it has. We have seen through this case how incredibly difficult it has been even if a woman is all of those things to have her voice be heard in the best of circumstances, but what of, well, every other woman?
A lot of the women in this case and others are and were told it's their fault for not speaking up or speaking up sooner when looking around at how the victims in this case were often treated like criminals themselves for coming forward, and hounded and harassed, it should be crystal clear why more women in these same unfortunate situations decide not to say anything.
What if you can't afford a lawyer, or you don't have an HR, or you don't have papers, or you work in an office where no one looks like you, or you are a rookie in your job trying to move up the ladder? There is far more that goes into reporting someone than just, it happened, you go to someone, tell them, and things are set in motion. I mean how many of the kids in the Catholic church scandal told someone only to not be believed and their abusers then went on abusing sometimes for decades? Just reporting doesn't automatically lead to an arrest or a firing.
As much as MeToo has done to highlight how deep of an issue this is for women, and gotten a lot more to speak out at great risk to themselves, their careers, and their families, it hasn't solved everything as some people would have you believe. It hasn't allowed women to just all of a sudden be all powerful and sweep through their lives ridding every bad seed out of their jobs and communities. If a woman has to chose between a paycheck that feeds her family and buys medications and reporting her boss, she may still suffer the abuses at a job because there isn't anywhere to go or to turn to for help. Some women are still being threatened with deportation for saying anything. Women of color may have extraordinarily hard times getting anyone to come forward with them or believe them if they work in offices where they are an only. Young women just starting out don't want to see their career opportunities dry up if they report someone powerful, they aren't believed, and are fired and black listed from future employment.
Weinstein's case puts a small dent in this huge bolder of an issue for women and some men. What it and MeToo have done is to give women a platform to talk to one another about these issues more freely and to create change in many offices, schools, and organizations who may have once had lackluster reporting policies and it has brought these issues to the national and international forefront. This however is not a one size fits all solution as it has in no way solved it all for every other woman who still feels like because of who she is, or where she works, or her age, or lack of citizenship, or her lack of money, or her race, can't actually afford to report or doesn't have the ability to do so. All is not right with the world yet. There is still a lot of work that must be done and continuously kept up with to prevent these situations from happening to their daughters in the future and to provide a unique approach for the vast number of women marginalized by the systems and men they've become victim to.