Hollywood and beyond spoke out on social media using the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport

By Robyn Merrett
September 22, 2018 12:35 AM

Alyssa Milano, Padma Lakshmi and Lili Reinhart have shared their sexual assault stories in order to shed light on why victims don’t initially speak out after President Donald Trump questioned why Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser waited nearly four decades to report his alleged sexual assault.

Hollywood and beyond spoke out on social media using the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport.

“Hey, @realDonaldTrump, Listen the f— up,” Milano, 45, began on Friday.

“I was sexually assaulted twice. Once when I was a teenager. I never filed a police report and it took me 30 years to tell my parents.”

The Insatiable actress, who was a campaigner for the #MeToo campaign, then encouraged other sexual assault victims to follow her lead.

“If any survivor of sexual assault would like to add to this please do so in the replies. #MeToo.”

Actress Reinhart tweeted, “Because I didn’t want to lose my job or make people think I was a drama queen.”

Top Chef host Lakshmi gutwrenchingly revealed she had been assaulted three times.

“I was 7 the first time I was sexually assaulted. He was a relative of my mom’s second husband. I told my folks and they sent me away. #WhyIDidntReport,” she tweeted.

“The second time I was 16 years old and a virgin. He was my boyfriend. “Date rape” wasn’t discussed in the 80’s. I was horrified and ashamed,” Lakshmi continued.

“The third time I was assaulted I was 23. I thought that no one would believe me, because no one wanted to stand up to him. I had seen the way Anita Hill was treated when she came forward.”

Also adding her voice was politician Rachel Crooks, who accused Trump during the presidential race of forcibly kissing her at Trump Tower more than a decade ago, also joined the movement.

“I worked in Trump Tower at a company partnered with Trump Organization. We had no HR department, no protocol, & @realDonaldTrump owned the building. Also, I was embarrassed that it happened, & thought it reflected poorly on me, not him. I know better now,” Crooks said.

On Thursday, Trump— who himself denied accusations of sexual harassment or assault by several women during the 2016 presidential campaign— gave an interview to Fox News’ Sean Hannity on the claims against his Supreme Court nominee.

“I think it’s a very sad situation,” Trump, 72, said. “He’s an outstanding person and frankly Sean, to see what’s going on is just very, very sad. You say, why didn’t somebody call the FBI 36 years ago? When did this all happen? What’s going on? To take a man like this and besmirch?”

Donald Trump and Brett Kavanaugh
| Credit: Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images; Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Christine Blasey Ford has accused Kavanaugh, 53, of pinning her down to a bed, groping her and trying to remove her clothes at a high school party in the early 1980s.

Kavanaugh has denied the allegation, but Ford— a 51-year-old research psychologist and professor at Palo Alto University— is reportedly negotiating the terms under which she would testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week.

In addition to his Fox interview, Trump posted numerous tweets defending Kavanaugh on Friday.

“Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left wing politicians who don’t want to know answers, they just want to destroy and delay. Facts don’t matter. I go through this with them every single day in D.C.,” Trump wrote.

“I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”

If you or someone you care about is affected by sexual violence, contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).