#MenToo vs #MeToo: Johnny Depp's victory over Amber Heard reignites gender-based violence debate

#MenToo vs #MeToo: Johnny Depp's victory over Amber Heard reignites gender-based violence debate
Johnny Depp won his defamation trial against Amber Heard on June 1 (Getty Images and Instagram)

Moments after Johnny Depp won the defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard on Wednesday, June 1, #MenToo as a reference to #MeToo began trending online. Heard who failed to emerge victorious in the court and as well in the court of public opinion got ridiculed for how she described what happened to her and for overacting and tearless crying. She was trolled for her emotional facial expressions and for alleging abuse at all.

The Internet soon was divided into two groups — triumph and disappointment via the #MeToo vs #MenToo debate. Nicole Bedera, a sociologist with expertise in sexual violence indicated that the verdict was not a surprise, but it also does not mean the end of the #MeToo movement.


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She wrote, “It’s a reminder of why we need #MeToo in the first place. For feminists, this should be a radicalizing moment, inspiring us to push for structural changes to the systems stacked against us.” 


Women in Film, a nonprofit that advocates for women working in entertainment tweeted, “We are deeply concerned the Depp-Heard decision will set precedent exacerbating barriers victims face in coming forward. The trial and its reception demonstrated a regressive trend of retaliation against those who speak out about violence or abuse perpetrated by those in power."


Using #MenToo, a user posted, "The default setting in our society is that men are the abusers and women are the victims. And for men, it’s guilty until proven innocent. Both sides of the story need to be heard before believing one side over the other and casting judgment."

Another reacted by saying, "ladies and gentlemen the #MeToo movement took a huge blow today and its a huge day for men everywhere." Some indicated that it is an end to the '#MeToo' movement. "Is it #TimesUp for #MeToo ? Is it time for #MenToo? A female abuser is a criminal, not an “imperfect victim.” A woman who makes a false allegation is a criminal, not an “imperfect victim.” Demonizing all men as bad was never the solution ~ it was always the problem. #MenToo."



"I'm glad that #MenToo is trending. Men should feel safe and comfortable speaking out against domestic violence. Men, you don't deserve to be beaten or mistreated. Know your worth," tweeted a user.


One of many users pointed to Amber Heard's post, "Sick of the gender war. Real survivors seek true justice which isn’t dependent on gender. AH terrified me because I know my abuser could be just as cruel. #MenToo #JusticeForJohhnyDepp."


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