There is no such thing as a “time” to talk about sexual violence, it is simply vital to keep talking about it. Including now, amid a global pandemic and a renewed fight for racial justice.
To dig into this, Full Frontal host Samantha Bee interviewed #MeToo founder Tarana Burke about the protests against police brutality and systemic racism following the killings of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and many Black people at the hands of officers. Sexual violence be included in this conversation.
“After the use of excessive force, sexual violence is the second most reported type of police misconduct,” reported Samantha Bee in a clip published on Wednesday. “And Black women and Black LGBTQ people are disproportionately targeted.”
Women cannot be left out of this fight, and Bee and Burke discuss the importance of including survivors of sexual violence in the campaign for police reform. But first, they take a good hard look at the idea of people saying it’s “not the time” to talk about sexual violence, and how to keep these conversations at the forefront.
“I’ve gotten this pushback that says, ‘You’re supposed to be #MeToo, why are you over here talking about Black Lives Matter? And, you know, outside of my Black life mattering, there is a very direct connection between police brutality and sexual violence,” says Burke.
In the clip, Burke refers to the case of two former New York Police Department officers, Eddie Martins and Richard Hall, who raped 18-year-old Anna Chambers while she was in custody. Martins and Hall would serve no jail time, sentenced to just five years of probation even after they pleaded guilty to 11 charges. And she also refers to the case of Oluwatoyin “Toyin” Salau, a 19-year-old Black Lives Matter protester murdered and sexually assaulted by Florida man Aaron Glee.
“People have to pay attention to sexual violence and the crisis of sexual violence because it really permeates every part of our culture, every part of our lives,” says Burke.
“So, times may change but the way we hate women remains constant,” responds Bee.