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What #MeToo teaches us about the power of words

Me too.

That phrase took over the Internet this week, with women using it to illustrate the vast, devastating impact of sexual harassment and sexual assault. The concept, initially put forward by actress Alyssa Milano on Twitter in light of the sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein, was simple: “If all the women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote ‘Me too’ as a status, we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem.”

It struck me — and not just on a personal level. #MeToo illustrates the power of words.

Me too — two small, seemingly inconsequential words, used to embolden an entire community and illustrate the scale of a problem many struggle to define.

Me too — a phrase that typically bonds us together over something innocuous, like a love for chili cheese fries, taking on an entirely new significance.

Me too — once something you would say without thinking twice, and now, a movement.

Words make an impact, and we’ve got to use them wisely. But we must use them.


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