One Tweet Sums Up How Much Work Is Left To Do After Harvey Weinstein's Arrest

"The structural impediments to justice are staggering."

On Friday morning, Harvey Weinstein was arrested after surrendering to the New York Police Department. According to CNN, the former Hollywood producer is being charged with rape and committing a criminal sex act, stemming from separate incidents with two women. Weinstein has reportedly entered a plea of not guilty.

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Anyone who has kept up with the many accusations against Weinstein will know that this moment has been a long time coming. The stories of numerous women sparked increased conversation about the issue of sexual harassment and assault, not only in Hollywood but in all workplaces and areas of life.

However, as meaningful as the arrest may be for survivors, author Irin Carmon pointed out on Twitter that there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure women's voices are heard and perpetrators are held accountable. She noted how much effort and how many people were involved in making Weinstein's arrest happen, from accusers to journalists to investigators.

"It took all these years of whispered accounts, months of determined reporting, dozens of women speaking out publicly and multiple jurisdictions investigating to get charges against Harvey Weinstein in connection to two women," Carmon, the co-author of Notorious RBG, wrote in response to the arrest. "Even without a rich bully's army of protectors, the impediments to justice are staggering."

Another user replied to the tweets with an excerpt from a recent New York Times piece by Catherine A. MacKinnon, which Carmon said she is "constantly quoting."

MacKinnon wrote that, in the case of campus sexual assaults, "it typically took three to four women testifying that they had been violated by the same man in the same way to even begin to make a dent in his denial. That made a woman, for credibility purposes, one-fourth of a person."

As many on Twitter highlighted in the midst of Friday's news, this approach needs to change.

Weinstein's case — like those of Bill Cosby, Larry Nassar, and others who have been accused or convicted of sexual abuse — shows the importance of believing women in order for more perpetrators to be brought to justice, and sooner.

"Women do not get to have a side. They get to have an interrogation," actress Amber Tamblyn wrote in an op-ed for the New York Times last year. "Too often, they are questioned mercilessly about whether their side is legitimate. Especially if that side happens to accuse a man of stature, then that woman has to consider the scrutiny and repercussions she'll be subjected to by sharing her side."

Hopefully, as movements such as #MeToo and #TimesUp continue to gain momentum, and as more powerful men are held accountable, that won't be the case for much longer.

Cover image: Denis Makarenko / Shutterstock.com

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