Some conservatives argue that the falls from grace of Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, and Bill O’Reilly are evidence that the notion of rape culture is a myth because those predators were punished after their crimes came to light. But that ignores how others knew of the abuse at the time and let it continue for years, if not decades. Even after losing their careers, these men still have defenders and supporters.
Many in the conservative movement are too quick to insist that rape culture does not exist and that statistics regarding the prevalence of sexual assault are overblown, but the events of 2017 and the thousands of #MeToo stories women have told should cause us at least to question those conclusions.
Similarly, double standards for men and women exist, too, and the way to resolve them is first to acknowledge their existence. Compare the difference in treatment of Harvard Law School graduate and former Trump surrogate A. J. Delgado to that of political strategist and former Trump spokesman Jason Miller — the man who cheated on his pregnant wife to have an affair with her. Miller still appears on cable news and informally advises the White House, while Delgado now lives with her mother in Miami and no longer appears on cable news, in news publications, or within the Trump inner circle.