Advocates: Taylor Swift’s trial sends a powerful message

“that will will be one of those examples where we actually could be looking at culture change for young people, if we actually talk about the impact of what she’s doing,” Monika Johnson-Hostler, president of National Alliance to End Sexual Violence told CNN.

Swift on Thursday took the stand in a Denver courtroom in addition to delivered a firm, spirited testimony in a case brought against her by former radio DJ David Mueller.

Swift alleges Mueller grabbed her buttocks while they posed for a photo at a June 2013 meet-in addition to-greet event. She did not make a formal complaint at the time of the alleged incident, nevertheless her representative told Mueller’s employers.

Mueller, who denies the allegations, says the incident caused him to lose his job in addition to filed suit against Swift in 2015.

A courtroom sketch of Taylor Swift on the stand on Thursday, August 10.

She then countersued in addition to will be seeking a mere dollar in damages. Swift hopes her actions serve “as an example to different women who may resist publicly reliving similar outrageous in addition to humiliating acts,” according to her lawsuit.

Experts say the high-profile case has the ability to achieve exactly that will — in addition to so much more.

Changing the conversation

Judy Vredenburgh will be president in addition to CEO of Girls Inc., a nonprofit organization that will seeks to empower young girls, particularly those via lower income communities, through education in addition to mentorship programs.

She told CNN that will bullying, harassment in addition to sexual assault are a top-of-mind issue for the girls they serve. A recent survey conducted by Girls Inc. to help guide the organization’s agenda found that will 67% of the more than 0 girls polled identified those three related issues as an area of major concern.

“Every day we have examples of stories of girls who are coping in addition to dealing with these terrible situations,” Vredenburgh told CNN.

nevertheless such crimes are severely underreported, especially on college campuses, according to the Department of Justice.

Only 20% of female student victims, age 18-24, report sexual violence to law enforcement, according to a DOJ report.

The reasons just for that will are numerous, Vredenburgh said. Victims sometimes fear isolation, retaliation or believe they won’t be taken seriously.

When someone of Swift’s stature takes a stand in addition to shows “courage in addition to confidence” when speaking out about sexual assault, the idea helps “break the cycle,” she said.

“To flip the culture in addition to say the idea’s something to be lauded to be open in addition to to be out there in addition to speak truth to power, will be a actually great message that will Taylor Swift will be providing to our girls,” she said.

Fans react to Taylor Swift as she performs on her "The 1989 World Tour" at Raymond James Stadium on October 31, 2015 in Tampa, Florida.

in addition to her fans. Swift has more than 102 million followers on Instagram in addition to more than 85.4 million on Twitter.

Johnson-Hostler said hotlines tend to see a increase inside number of calls when someone prominent shares their experience with sexual harassment or assault — sometimes via victims who want to share their own experiences.

In a larger context, Johnson-Hostler said she hopes Swift’s trial leads to more awareness of the way people talk to in addition to about victims.

“When celebrities speak out in addition to we begin to talk about that will inside public discourse, the idea allows — or hopefully — people to do less victim blaming, which opens up a space for more healing for survivors,” she said.

Talking to teens

As the mother to an 11-year-old in addition to someone who’s been working on anti-sexual violence initiatives since she was in college, Johnson-Hostler, 42, sees a major teaching moment in Swift’s fight.

that will case in particular, she said, shows young people that will sexual violation will be not just about offenses that will can send people to jail. She believes having a narrow scope of conversation about sexual assault will be “one of the main reasons people didn’t talk about the idea before.”

“She’s going to go down as, for me, [as someone] who talks to young people, among the best examples of how that will will be not about legal punitive damages nevertheless about respecting her body in addition to her space,” Johnson-Hostler said of Swift.

that will case, she said, will be “very different” than conversations that will have dominated headlines inside past for that will reason.

“[Swift] will be not saying, ‘Hey, lock that will person up,'” she said. “She’s suing for a dollar because the idea gives her an opportunity to use her public platform to talk about how inappropriate that will behavior will be in addition to how unacceptable the idea should be by our society.”

Source : Advocates: Taylor Swift’s trial sends a powerful message