In the passed year, the social media and the general media were trumpeting: Me too! A triumphant campaign targeting especially the victims of famous and sex crazed older men, like Dominique Strauss Khan in France, Leo Weinstein and President Trump in the US, various members of parliament across Europe and here in Norway the uncrowned secondary prince of the Labour Party.
To be sure, there were more mundane cases getting attention in the social media. And that is reason for hope, because in Norway one in ten women have experienced rape or sexual assault. Yet as to the effectiveness of the Metoo movement one can only interject Mr. Trump to show that the power of hierarchy is only too strong still. Yet we are still hoping.
One factor seeming to drown a little in all the Metoo is the plight of minority women. They are not visible at all in this campaign. And some minority groups are the ones that are most likely to endure sexual violence, even in a conjugal situation. In Norway there has been a lot of governmental programs to discourage sexual abuse and forced marriages in minority communities. The abscence of this well documented challenge is striking in the Metoo campaign.
This November the MIRA center tried to raise a discussion about this during their annual conference. During the conference work shop were held where minority women argued that using the cultural explanation may suggest that violence against minority women is something else than violence against ethnic Norwegian women. However, apart from NGOs dealing with the issue, there are hardly any voices in the social media giving Metoo a minority visage to it. Hopefully, this is something for the furtue.We wish every reader a happy 2019!
- Sheila Parrera