Taylor Swift stopped in the middle of a concert on Tuesday to commemorate the anniversary of her legal victory over David Mueller, a Denver radio host who groped her and then sued the singer for defamation after he was fired by his station. Swift successfully countersued the radio host and was awarded a symbolic $1 in damages last August after a trial during which the singer unflinchingly denounced Mueller while repeatedly stating that he had blatantly “grabbed a handful of my ass” in public.
“A year ago I was not playing in a stadium in Tampa. I was in a courtroom in Denver, Colorado. This is the day the jury sided in my favor and said that they believed me,” Swift told fans at a performance for her Reputation tour in Florida. Within two months of the verdict, the avalanche of allegations against Harvey Weinstein and other powerful men in Hollywood ushered in the phenomenon known as the #MeToo movement. “I guess I just think about all the people that weren’t believed and the people who haven’t been believed, and the people who are afraid to speak up because they think they won’t be believed.”
“I just wanted to say I’m sorry to anyone who ever wasn’t believed because I don’t know what turn my life would have taken if somebody didn’t believe me when I said something had happened to me,” she continued, adding that “we have so much further to go” when it comes to believing women’s accounts of harassment and assault.
Swift’s testimony at the 2017 trial swiftly became a viral sensation, and was credited with helping lead to a dramatic increase in the number of women willing to come forward about incidents of alleged harassment and assault. The public impact of the trial would lead to Swift being included on TIME magazine’s famous “Silence Breakers” Person of the Year cover — despite complaints from some critics who questioned her feminist credentials. According to The Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network, the number of calls received at the organization’s hotline spiked by 35 percent after the outcome of Swift’s trial.
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