Sarah Everard disappearance: #TooManyWomen trend overtakes #NotAllMen as women recount stories of feeling unsafe

The outrage over the disappearance of Sarah Everard created a movement on social media with women, mainly from London, stepping forward to share harrowing stories of feeling unsafe on the streets

                            Sarah Everard disappearance: #TooManyWomen trend overtakes #NotAllMen as women recount stories of feeling unsafe
Sarah Everard went missing on March 3 in London under mysterious circumstances (Lambeth Police)

After Sarah Everard, a 33-year-old woman disappeared mysteriously while walking back from a friend's house in London, and human remains were discovered in a wooded area of Ashford, Kent, more than 50 miles from the area Everard was last seen, the hashtag "Too Many Women" started trending on Twitter as more and more women came forward to share their stories of being sexually harassed or abused or generally feeling unsafe in their day-to-day life. 

Confirming the identity of the remains found in Ashford “may take (investigators) some time,” Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said on Wednesday, March 10.

Meanwhile, after a Metropolitan police officer was arrested on Tuesday, March 9, on suspicion of kidnapping Sarah Everard, reports suggested he was taken into custody on March 10 on additional suspicion of murder and allegations of indecent exposure. The arrested officer has been recognized in the news as Wayne Couzens. Rumors began circulating that Couzens, a married father of two, had kidnapped, raped and murdered Everard.


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Sarah Everard (Lambeth Police)

The outrage over the same created a movement on social media with women, mainly from London, stepping forward to share harrowing stories of feeling unsafe while walking on the street and urging people not to victim-shame women for venturing out of their homes.

"I don't usually get serious on here but, I too, have been followed, cornered in an alley by 3 men as a teen, groped, drugged etc. Women know that not all men do this, but thats not the point. Men need to hold others accountable, do not just sit by and let it happen #TooManyWomen," one user wrote.

Another added, "#TooManyWomen have to text the taxi-driver details to their pals on their way home #TooManyWomen have to text their pals the details of their first dates — 'meeting X there at Y and will text' #TooManyWomen smile nervously at inappropriate comments thinking 'please don't hurt me'."

Another noted, "In Roof a couple years back this man groped us girls. We told the bouncer & he was about to kick him out when his friend said 'oh that’s so-and-so you know him' so he stopped, looked at us & just shrugged.. men know their friends are like this & choose to do nothing #TooManyWomen."

The next commented, "When I was 19, a guy grabbed my breast in a nightclub so I slapped him across the face immediately. Everyone gasped at me for slapping him but no one gasped at him for assaulting me. This is what has been normalised. It is not acceptable. #TooManyWomen." 

Posters requesting information are seen near Clapham Common during an investigation into the disappearance of a woman, Sarah Everard, last week, in South London, March 09, 2021, in London, England (Leon Neal/Getty Images)









One more pointed out, "I wore baggy sweaters, long skirts, hair in a bun. My boss still violently sexually assaulted me. So don't blame short skirts, alcohol, walking alone at night, promiscuity. THE CAUSE OF RAPE IS RAPISTS. #TooManyWomen." A commenter tweeted, "For all those saying 'Women shouldn't walk alone' Women should have the freedom to walk wherever we want whenever we want Sadly we know this isn't possible #SarahEverard #TooManyWomen."

A person reacted with, "Your 15yr old daughter phones you in tears at the way back from the orthodontist, a car load of men pulled over & said terrible sexual things that she won’t even tell you & you want to kill them but there’s no recourse as it’s happened to you too. #shewaswalkinghome #TooManyWomen."






Beating the trend #NotAllMen 

Sarah Everard (Lambeth Police)

The 'Too Many Women' trend was also started in an effort to curb an initial hashtag which read, 'Not All Men' which was promoted by a minority of people, who wanted to draw the focus back to the fact that not all men would commit crimes against women.

"#notallmen call out their friends for being misogynistic. - #notallmen allow women to express their experiences without trying to shout over them. - #notallmen accept their privilege when it comes to sexual violence. and #toomanywomen pay the price for these failings," one of them said.

One more noted, "We know it's #notallmen but unless you can tell us how to quickly assess which ones it is, it's a pointless sentiment.. #shewaswalkinghome #TooManyWomen." Another remarked, "Seeing #notallmen trend today in Ireland has really upset me. I am not comfortable enough to tell my stories yet. I am only 18 and already have multiple stories. This needs to stop, enough is enough. #toomanywomen."

The next wrote, "Enough with the #notallmen ... the focus must be #TooManyWomen! Rapists are the only cause of rape!" A person pointed out, "For anyone tweeting #NotAllMen remember there are #TooManyWomen that have to endure men who make them feel unsafe. Men don’t have to be part of the problem to be part of the solution."










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