Like so many others, the #metoo news that broke within the last week in the children's publishing arena really surprised/disappointed/pissed me off. It isn't just that we write for children and should know how to better comport ourselves, it's that we are grown ups and should know better than to prey on each other.
Even as it sickens me, I'm so glad this conversation is happening on a huge scale. It is absolutely not acceptable to use your position of power or celebrity to take advantage of someone. And it needs to stop. While I'm not comfortable seeing people accused, tried, and found guilty in the comments section of an article, in the media, or online, I am very encouraged that this major elevation in awareness will finally, FINALLY create a safe environment for the victims to come forward immediately. To be heard. And for there to be proper investigations into conduct - without repercussions to the victim.
I know a lot of why this has been allowed to go on unchecked is because the accused are often the ones that bring in the money or notoriety for whatever organization or industry they are involved with. I'm not naive enough to believe this way of thinking will simply go away. Money talks. Sex sells. BUT, I do believe that now victims will be heard. Even if they have to take it to social media. But let's not let it come to that. Let's, 1) handle ourselves with maturity and control so there is nothing to report in the first place. 2) Establish safe reporting policies that protect the victim and then actually follow through with them. 3) Show NO TOLERANCE - even to the money makers.
Believe it or not, when people's bad behavior is corrected, they generally stop the bad behavior. So, correct it immediately.
I'm heartsick by the names that have been named this week. But I hope to hell (you know I'm serious if I'm swearing on my blog!) it acts as fair warning to anyone else who is currently acting inappropriately, or to those who start to justify bad behavior as they gain some momentum in their position. NO TOLERANCE.
(On a lighter note: come back tomorrow for a cover reveal for Krysten Lindsay Hager's upcoming YA contemporary)