Forum

Letter to the Editor: #BelieveWomen is a call for equality, not female dominance

Editorials featured in the Forum section are solely the opinions of their individual authors.

Madeline Kim’s article, “The fallacy of the mainstream #BelieveWomen tag,” intelligently parses the relationship between the #BelieveWomen tag and some statistics of sexual assault, but she gets her lesson fundamentally wrong. The “fallacy” of the #BelieveWomen tag, she claims, is that it doesn’t represent other (male or otherwise) voices of sexual assault, and furthermore that “the message #BelieveWomen can easily be perverted into becoming an environment where male victims fear that their voices…won’t be heard.” This is simply a return to the same rationale volleyed against the #BlackLivesMatter tag. #BlackLivesMatter does not mean, imply, or attempt to bring about a world in which white lives don’t matter. Neither does #BelieveWomen mean, imply, or attempt to bring about a world in which men aren’t believed. The point is that men are believed and women aren’t, just as the point is that white lives do matter, and black lives don’t in our society. The tag is simply one in the long history of women attempting to gain their legitimate and justified authority, not an attempt to gain authority over others.