The editors at TIME magazine have selected the “silence breakers,” the women who have come forward with sexual assault and harassment allegations and forced a reckoning in America about the culture of the country’s workplace, as the 2017 “Person of the Year.” The cover of the magazine’s annual features a portrait of actress Ashley Judd, singer Taylor Swift, corporate lobbyist Adama Iwu, Isabel Pascual and former Uber engineer Susan Fowler. The magazine has been selecting a “Person of the Year” since 1927 and editors make their picks based on the figure or figures who influence the world the most “for good or ill.” As TIME magazine national correspondent Charlotte Alter noted on Twitter, the POY “was conceived, reported and written by women. It was fact-checked by women. The video was shot and edited by women. The layout and photo spread were designed by women.”
TIME editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal announced the selection on the Today show Wednesday. He said, “The galvanizing actions of the women on our cover … along with those of hundreds of others, and of many men as well, have unleashed one of the highest-velocity shifts in our culture since the 1960s.”
Rose McGowan, who has accused Harvey Weinstein of rape and has been one of the movement’s most vocal figures, is also featured in the TIME POY issue. Below, watch a video of her talking about why now is the time for anger.
The momentous cover puts the #MeToo movement fully into the national spotlight. The movement was actually begun 10 years ago by a woman named Tarana Burke. The 44-year-old activist said in a recent interview that “it wasn’t built to be a viral campaign or a hashtag that is here today and forgotten tomorrow.” The movement, however, received new life in October when actress Alyssa Milano, in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein allegations posted a call to action on Twitter urging all women who’ve experienced sexual misconduct to share their stories on social media using the hashtag #MeToo. Woman around the nation and the world have heeded her call and the movement, in conjunction with rigorous news reporting on the issue, has resulted in the demise of numerous other high-profile media and entertainment figures, including Louis C.K., Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose and Russell Simmons.
Burke and Milano appeared on the Today show Wednesday to talk about the traction the movement has gained in the two months since Weinstein’s alleged crimes were exposed.
“I could never imagine this, I could never have envisioned something that could change the world,” Burke said, adding that she was also sexually harassed.
“As women we have to support each other and stand up and say, ‘No more,'” Milano said.
Read the full story at Today.com.