September 22, 2021

The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH

The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH

Tarana Burke Talks About the Surprising Origins of #MeToo

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, Tarana Burke Talks About the Surprising Origins of #MeToo, The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH
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, Tarana Burke Talks About the Surprising Origins of #MeToo, The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH
, Tarana Burke Talks About the Surprising Origins of #MeToo, The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH

But he had moved to Selma in 2004 and was received with a homecoming. He was affiliated with the youth group that I grew up in, which was started by veterans of the civil rights movement. We found out that people in our community knew about it and didn’t do anything — didn’t help the children, didn’t alert the community. Even once they knew for sure, they did not ring the alarm. Because this man is a hero, right? Anybody who had proximity to Dr. Martin Luther King is considered, you know, larger than life, a hero.

You wrote, “I knew we had to get those children out like we were headed north toward freedom.” And you realized you had to do it yourself, by founding a new movement.

His tentacles had spread around Selma. I couldn’t do much about that. But it felt like the value of what I had from my work in Selma, and even from Bevel, was really grounded in the power of movement, of organizing. It just felt like, Why aren’t we using these things for this behemoth issue that’s right in front of us?

In the 21st-century youth group, we have a song called “Who Will Speak for the Children?” “Who will speak for the children, who will call out their names?” It’s about voting rights, but it applies in all of these other ways. I felt like: I’m the one who speaks for the children. It was me and all my small army of folks. And honestly the children themselves.

In the book, you describe your own childhood rape, when you were only about 7 years old. And the perpetrator was young as well.

Yeah, he was probably about 18.

You always stress that every victim’s reaction is different. So all these years later, how do you look back on this?

It took me a long time to feel angry. I felt ashamed. And then, about a decade ago, I saw him again, at a Father’s Day event back in our old neighborhood in the Bronx. I just was so angry that he got to be in that moment. I felt like, “You got to walk around, barbecue and make friends and have fun.” He’s become a police officer. With two daughters. He got to do all of the things. And I just was, like, “How do you get to do these things, and I have thought about you almost every day for 40 years?”

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