If you follow entertainment news, you may have heard by now that American singer Kesha Sebert was recently denied a court injunction that would have allowed her to record music outside of her deal with Sony Music and producer Dr. Luke. It may seem odd for a singer to head to court to separate from the label and producer that made her famous, but Kesha had very good reasons.
In October 2014, Kesha filed a lawsuit requesting that the court declare her contract with Dr. Luke as void. The lawsuit states that, beginning in 2004, Dr. Luke has “sexually, physically, verbally, and emotionally abused Ms. Sebert to the point where Ms. Sebert nearly lost her life.” As 2016 began, a New York judge denied an injunction that would have ended Kesha’s requirements to Dr. Luke and Sony until the full court battle was resolved.
But the New York judge denied the injunction, stating that no signs of irreparable harm from abuse, sexual, physical, or otherwise, existed. Hollywood starlets and fans have come out in droves to support the “Free Kesha” campaign. Some of her fans have protested outside of Sony’s offices, and Taylor Swift even offered $250,000 to support Kesha’s legal fees.
So what does all of this say about the current state of abuse in America? In Kesha’s words, “Unfortunately, I don’t think that my case is giving people who have been abused confidence that they can speak out, and that’s a problem.”
Physical and mental abuse are enormous problems in the United States. Sexual assault, which Kesha claims occurred between her and Dr. Luke, happens to nearly 300,000 people every single year, 80 percent of whom are under the age of 30.
Many women experiencing abuse are frightened to come forward and acknowledge the damage for a number of reasons. Some gradually become convinced that they are worthless and deserve the abuse and many are frightened of the repercussions. It’s estimated that 98 percent of rapists will never serve prison time due to the difficult nature of reporting.
Kesha’s case sadly echoes these sentiments as she experiences the court system denying her claims and asking her to work within the company where she claims that abuse occurred repeatedly for ten years. A multitude of organizations and campaigns currently exist to help women speak up against the violence that they experience, but the result of Kesha’s request for injunction is sending a poor example.
This highlights the importance of personal injury lawyers and abuse attorneys to support people who have experienced abuse and guarantee them the right to a fair trial.