The Me Too movement has released a series of four new animated PSAs, one of which stars actor Terry Crews.
All four short films feature a survivor of sexual assault telling their story over an animated visualization of their words, The Washington Post reports. The survivors also offer advice to others suffering from the effects of sexual assault.
In his short, Crews spends time explaining what made him come forward with his story, which, as Blavity has reported, involves a high-powered Hollywood agent groping him at a party.
“I remember right after the [Weinstein] story broke, I was just going through my feed, and there were so many men, in particular, that were calling these women liars,” Crews says. “They were calling them opportunists.”
This upset the actor, who felt he had to do something.
“For me to remain silent, I would have felt like a fraud,” Crews says. “Because when this happens to you, you are trapped. And you are not a victim that needs help. You are a problem that needs to be eradicated.”
Pressuring survivors into silence is one tactic sexual predators use to make sure they get away with their crimes, Crews adds, before telling viewers he’s learned “silence is violence.”
“To any survivor: I will not be shamed. I did nothing wrong,” the actor says. “Please, to any survivor out there, repeat that mantra over and over until you believe it.”
Crews’ message is echoed in the other films.
A woman named Emily tells her fellow survivors to remember: “You are so not alone.”
Daniela, who narrates her PSA in Spanish says, “Many women go through this, and they have to remain silent because they are undocumented or because they don’t speak the language, because they don’t have anyone or they don’t know help is out there.”
Despite being someone who felt they didn’t have the words, Daniela says she was moved to speak out because it is “time for justice.”
And a gentleman who chose to remain anonymous says in his film, “I think it starts with you — you have to make the decision to stop shrinking yourself to make space for someone else’s feelings about what you went through.”
In an interview with Refinery 29, Me Too founder Tarana Burke said she hopes the PSAs will put viewers in the shoes of survivors.
“We need people to really understand what it is to be a survivor ... [and to] have deep empathy with that experience, so that when they go out in the world, and they, one way or another, affect our lives, they're doing it with an understanding of what it is that we've experienced,” Burke said. “That's really what the PSAs are about.”
Me Too's founder also noted those featured in the PSAs were carefully chosen to illustrate no one is immune to sexual assault and to show how it affects people from all walks of life.
“We wanted to be really declarative about the fact that men belong in this movement, straight and queer men, girls and women, documented, undocumented,” Burke said. “However you identify across the spectrum of gender, race, and religion, sexual violence affects your life. Either you know a survivor, or you are one, or both."
Take a look at the PSAs yourself below:
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