Ces Drilon failed the #MeToo “movement”

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Not only did Gretchen Fullido blow the whistle on what could be an entrenched culture of sexual harrassment and bullying in the ABS-CBN News organisation, she went the whole nine yards and filed charges to back her complaint. That’s way ahead of the curve of most victims who only go as far as kicking up stinks over social media.

The #MeToo movement has been criticised as one that involves women revealing their victimhood usually years after the alleged assault of harassment was committed. Usually the subject of the complaint is a prominent person. This is the reason the movement gained traction — it did so on the back of the star power of the accused.

Indeed, Drilon’s account of her own #MeToo experience follows the same template going public over an experience many years ago that stops short of the setting off on the important last mile — filing charges.

Ces couldn’t scream at the time, and merely pushed the perpetrator away as she ran out. For the rest of the day, she pretended like nothing happened. “Well, I was just starting my career as a journalist then, and the person was my superior. I didn’t want to put my job on the line,” she admits. “And it seemed like it wasn’t right for me to make a scene, that was how I felt [then]. I didn’t want to disturb the goings-on of the newsroom, and so I pretended like nothing happened.”

The irony is that the #MeToo movement emboldened women to act on incidents like these and, more importantly, made authorities that are in a position to support and act on these cases more receptive to these complaints.

It is therefore quite disappointing that Drilon and the rest of the ABS-CBN leadership would now take the position of defensiveness, stonewalling and, even worse, silence on this matter.

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