Yesterday, the New York Times broke a shocking story about legendary Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein (think "Silver Linings Playbook," "Shakespeare In Love," and "Project Runway") and his decades of sexual harassment against both company employees and actresses looking for roles.
Brie Larson was inspired to speak out about her own recent experience with sexual harassment on Twitter, but some people mocked her for it, inadvertently proving that sexism is still alive and well.
Larson tweeted about a TSA agent who thought he could ask her out after she smiled at him.
A polite smile isn't an invitation. Being randomly asked out can range from being annoying to being downright uncomfortable to being scary. Plus, this man was on the job, so that's incredibly unprofessional.
Larson made it clear she will always stand with sexual assault and harassment survivors.
Some people were instantly infuriated, claiming it was merely a compliment.
That's a pretty common misconception — that women should be grateful when a guy asks them out. Uh, no. Sometimes, women just want to be left alone!
Plus, turning someone down when they ask you out is always awkward and uncomfortable — and when you're a woman, there's always the fear of violence or anger or insults when you turn down a man's advances.
People just refused to get it.
They couldn't understand why someone wouldn't want to be asked out while they were simply minding their own business.
Trolls claimed she was "triggered," but judging by their outraged insults, it seems that was just them feeling that way.
Larson was unfazed by all the attacks, though. Instead she made it clear she was talking about her own experience to start a dialogue.
She urged everyone to simply listen to each other before making a judgment.
And she encouraged everyone to ask questions when they don't get why someone feels a certain way.
Instead of deleting Twitter forever, Larson still managed to preach about the positive power of social media.
At the end of the day, all the hate she got for speaking out about sexual harassment only proves her point. Women are often intimidated into silence after these kinds of situations because people refuse to believe them or see their experiences as valid.
That's how men like Harvey Weinstein are able to get away with such atrocious behavior for decades — because women are told over and over they're taking things too personally, their experiences aren't valid, no one will believe them.
Larson is right on all accounts. We have to start listening when people come forward. Only then can we truly fight sexual harassment and create a safer world for all people.