As the #MeToo movement took hold and increasing numbers of people spoke out about abuse from famous and powerful men ranging from Harvey Weinstein and Bill O’Reilly to Russell Simmons and L.A. Reid, few of them have spoken about what happened after they named their alleged abusers. Today, the New York Times published an emotionally harrowing article in which 20 of those accusers talked about the aftermath — how people treated them, how they felt and what their careers have been like since. They range from actors Gwyneth Paltrow and Ashley Judd to comparatively lesser-known people, and from the music industry, executive Drew Dixon, singer Tina Baker, singer-songwriter Vanessa Carlton, journalist-promoter Toni Sallie and bassist Chris Brown spoke about the aftermath of their accusations against Def Jam Records/Rush Management founder Russell Simmons, former Epic Records chief L.A. Reid, as well as ballet master Peter Martins and conductor James Levine.
“These are incredibly powerful men,” Dixon says in the piece. “They’re cultural icons, they’re business icons. So just the idea that I was kicking the hornet’s nest with these two really huge people [Simmons and Reid], I didn’t know what was going to happen.
“At the very same time, the second I read it, I felt relief because I was done: However scary the reaction and fallout is — even however hard this is for my family to process — I am done carrying this heavy load. It was like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I didn’t know how heavy it was until I put it down.”
Sallie said: “I was just contacted by a lady that I know. She told me she was raped 6 months ago. Because of her reading my story, she had the strength to report him to the police. For the rest of my life … Thank you! ❤”