Thousands of Google employees all over the world left their desks to hit the streets in protest last week.
The reason was one that’s all too prevalent in our society and has been addressed many times before: The alleged mishandling of sexual misconduct allegations.
These in particular are against multiple Google executives.
The hard truth of this walkout is that sexual harassment needs to be taken more seriously in and out of the workplace. When an executive’s job is seen as more important than a violation of another human’s body or mind, our society has hit rock bottom.
The ratio of men to women who participated in the walkouts varied around the world. According to AP News, in New York there appeared to be as many men as women, while in Cambridge, Massachusetts, men outnumbered women six to one.
This ratio is surprising.
One would assume that women would feel more enraged than men regarding this subject, being that the majority of sexual misconduct allegations reported within the workplace are against men.
The reality is, men and women need to band together to trample these despicable acts. One group of people can’t do it alone. There’s always strength in numbers. Much more can be done as a society if done as one.
People should not be getting away with sexual harassment because of their position within a company. Protests like these make it clear.
The alleged abuse wasn’t the only issue being protested. Google reportedly protected executive Andy Rubin, known as the father of Android, who was accused of sexual misconduct.
According to New York Times, Rubin was accused of forcing another employee to perform oral sex in 2013. The story was confirmed after an investigation. Shortly after the confirmation, Rubin was asked for his resignation.
This ending sounds like a win for people everywhere victimized by sexual misconduct.
However, Google reportedly presented Rubin with a $90 million exit package. His final $2 million payment is set to be deposited next month.
Rubin was not the only Google executive protected after being accused of sexual misconduct. There allegedly have been two other incidents in the past.
The people of Google and the world are fed up. As they should be.
Sexual misconduct is a serious crime and a horrible personal offense. It’s also all too common in the workplace. Millions of men and women fear going to work because they aren’t sure if they’re going to be groped or cat-called that day.
Getting justice for these vile acts is more important than keeping a replaceable executive.
An amazing aspect of these walkouts and movements like #MeToo is that people are coming out of the shadows. They’re finally feeling confident enough to speak out and share their stories. As a result, action is more often being taken.
Sexual harassment and its lack of repercussions are being brought to light. The people coming out with their experiences are forcing society to own up to these misdeeds. Google’s walkout is just one more step in the right direction for millions of victims.
Zoe Zbar is a junior majoring in marketing.