Monday, January 29, 2018

Why Kesha's Grammy's Performance Was Definitive of the #MeToo Movement

Hold the tomatoes. Before we go any further, I'd like to extend a disclaimer to anyone reading this that I do not consider myself as an incredibly political person. I am one that is usually soft-spoken in debatable topics, but this is something I'd like to speak up about. Please take anything said here with consideration of me simply stating an opinion and not an opinion reflecting any of my affiliates.

Watching this Sunday night got me thinking. And not in a way that made me feel great. When I saw this performance, I felt incredibly compelled to write about it. "Kiana, this isn't your thing," I thought. Certain situations, I feel more than happy to leave at the door. This isn't one of them.

The Me Too Movement has come a far, far way. Kesha has been involved since basically the very beginning. Watching this performance, at least for me, has almost brought her story and her situation full circle.

When the world found out about Kesha's legal battle with her abuser in 2014, we were shocked. Astonished. How can one of Kesha's closest business partners betray her like this? No one knew exactly what to say. Maybe her image as a party girl, led us askew. As the information was gathered and more about the trial was released, I think we all sympathized with Kesha. She has openly spoken about how all she had wanted was for the legal matters to be settled so she could continue on with her music career. She was contractually barred for years and could not proceed to make music until the contract was up.

Once the day dawned in 2017 when she was able to begin making music again, the world stopped and listened to her first single in years, Praying. Her track contained her story and showed right through all of her vulnerabilities. From there, I believe, people felt encouraged to open up about their experiences with sexual violence and assault. Soon after, the Me Too Movement emerged. One by one, many individuals in show business came out, telling their stories. This lead to people across the country famous and not opening up and sharing their experiences.

As award show season has approached, we saw #MeToo and "Time's Up" popping up everywhere. I've spoken to many about the topic, and some are fed with hearing about it. I can understand why one would feel that. No one likes things being pushed into their face all the time, especially things that aren't the most desirable things to think about. But that's where my main point comes into play. Without all of this exposure, would the ugly face of the entertainment industry have been shown? While we may not like the ugly parts, sometimes it's necessary to get to a solution.

A post shared by Kesha (@iiswhoiis) on

Seeing Kesha's performance last night helped me realize that although seeing #MeToo and Time's Up in front of your face every day can be irritating to some, however, the end result helped the world become a better place. The Me Too movement helped to destigmatize the conversations about rape culture and the workplace. A brighter future is in reach where people don't need to worry about being taken advantage of in fear of their lives and careers. This was visible in seeing so many wonderful women coming up on stage along with Kesha while she sang her song with passion, anger, heartbreak and eventually relief. It was reflective of Kesha's 4+ year journey and showed everyone the light at the end of her tunnel.

The next time you see Time's Up, try not to be annoyed. Remeber that the campaign in front of your face is helping and protecting everyone who has been or targeted as a victim of sexual assault. That could be even your neighbor, friend, or close relative.

Let's all try to be there for each other in this big world.

Onward and Upward,

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