Two extraordinarily brave and talented colleagues of mine are being sued for speaking out about sexual harassment and they need and deserve the support of all of us who believe that victims of sexual harassment have the right to speak and to be believed. They need our financial support for their legal defense fund, and they need witnesses willing to testify.
Almost 20 years ago, I submitted a sworn statement that was part of the investigation that led to a highly decorated Army Colonel being removed from his appointment as a department chair at the United States Military Academy for sexual harassment and abusive leadership. I have some sense of how scary it can be to simply tell the truth and bear witness to the abusive, harassing behavior of those with power and privilege; and I stand in awe of those who have already come forward in the #teamharpy case.
In an interview with Colorlines, my very favorite sociologist Tressie McMillan Cottom talks about learning from her mother’s example about “the model of organizing where being a witness was an active thing to do.”
If you want to bear witness in defense of Lisa and nina, and in defense of the right of women to speak up about harassment without fear, you can do any or all of the following things: