How I love the discussion finally being brought to light.

Every day it seems a new man in power is brought down from his “safe” pedestal by brave women coming forward to report the massive problem of sexual harassment and assault.

It is a time I never thought would come. I praise these bold women; because of them, the conversation is finally happening. The war on sexual harassment and assault is upon us, and I hope it truly changes our misguided sex culture.

This all started when women in power, from news anchors to reporters to actresses, came forward to put powerful men in their place. Their actions snowballed, and ordinary women who had horrible experiences with powerful men have begun to come forward.

It is not surprising how many famous men are being accused of sexual misconduct. Since the beginning of humanity, men have used their power to take advantage of women. I love that I’m in the era where women are taking back their power.

It is finally a time where we can combat this disgusting problem our society has repressed. Now, America needs to believe the women coming forward. We need to create an environment where victims feel safe enough to come forward. We need to support them so we can stop sexual assault and harassment from happening in the future.

One of my very first articles for The Utah Chronicle, written over a year and a half ago, was about sexual harassment and assault in the military. In it, I wrote that I believed it will never stop.

Recently, my friend with whom I was deployed sent me an article about our former Twelfth Air Force command chief pleading guilty to charges related to sexual misconduct. Although the public didn’t see this in the popular news, it said to me that — finally — a problematic man in power in the military was facing the consequences. Seeing one powerful commander being punished will hopefully lead to more.

I have had many experiences where men in leadership positions have behaved sexually inappropriate towards me. I have many female friends who have undergone similar situations. It is a huge “sweep under the rug” problem, not just in the military, but in all professions. I am so incredibly proud of the women who have come forward and taken their power back. I wish I could have been braver when I was in the military.

It is incredible how men — Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Bill O’Reilly, Kevin Spacey, Mark Halperin and more — have misused their power. These men can’t escape justice anymore.

I hope that because of this conversation, institutions like the military will get caught in the snowball and women in combat will feel safer coming forward. This should be an eye-opener for men in this country to see that sexual harassment and assault are big issues that happen everywhere. I hope we, as a country, change the rhetoric tied to sexual harassment and assault and start treating victims with compassion and understanding.

I’m happy to see these changes happening, and I can’t wait to see what happens next — hopefully, it is for the better.

letters@chronicle.utah.edu

@TheChrony

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