The problem now has a face, dozens of them, faces the public recognizes. And taking those faces down gives the entities that enabled sexual misconduct to run rampant in the first place—businesses, studios, comedy circuits, networks, restaurants—to score a symbolic victory without attacking the cause of the problem. Firing Matt Lauer, for example, is not the same thing as fixing NBC.
In the wake of #MeToo, the same opinionators who were nodding in unison about how great empowerment was warned that false accusations could lead to backlash against this cultural moment, in much the same way that false accusations of rape against the Duke lacrosse team helped derail a then-nascent discussion on campus sexual violence. But journalistic outlets have taken great care to vet stories of sexual misconduct concerning high-profile men like Roy Moore and T.J. Miller. Splinter’s Katie Drummond noted that “‘believe all women’ is not a thing.”