- Time magazine named its Person of the Year for 2017.
- Time chose the ‘Silence Breakers,’ the women and men who, in 2017, made moves against powerful men accused of sexual harassment and assault.
- The ‘Silence Breakers’ include Taylor Swift, Ashley Judd, Rose McGowan, Megyn Kelly, and Terry Crews.
- President Trump claimed in a November tweet that he was offered Person of the Year, but declined. Time denied this ever happened. Trump was named runner-up.
On Wednesday, Time magazine named its “Person of the Year”: the “Silence Breakers” who were part of the #MeToo movement. In 2017, these ‘Silence Breakers’ came forward and took action against sexual harassment and assault that had previously gone unpunished.
The five women who appear on the Time cover are actress Ashley Judd, singer Taylor Swift, Uber engineer Susan Fowler, lobbyist Adama Iwu, and strawberry picker Isabel Pascual.
This year, all five women broke silence and told their stories of sexual assault or harassment.
Judd came forward to The New York Times with an accusation of sexual harassment against film producer Harvey Weinstein, which jump-started the #MeToo movement, and encouraged more women and men to come forward with similar accusations against powerful men including Brett Ratner, Kevin Spacey, and Louis C.K.
Swift went to trial with a DJ who she says groped her in 2013. After Swift came forward, the DJ lost his job and sued her for defamation. Swift sued back, for one dollar. The jury found the DJ guilty.
In February, Fowler wrote an essay in which she accused her manager at Uber of sexual harassment, sparking a wave of change at the company. She also accused upper management at Uber of threatening her after she made the accusation.
Iwu, a lobbyist for Visa, started a campaign to expose sexual harassment in the California state government in Sacramento.
After the allegations against Harvey Weinstein surfaced, Pascual spoke out at a march in Los Angeles about being stalked and harassed in order to give a voice to women working in agriculture.
“The women and men who have broken their silence span all races, all income classes, all occupations and virtually all corners of the globe,” Time wrote. “They might labor in California fields, or behind the front desk at New York City’s regal Plaza Hotel, or in the European Parliament. They’re part of a movement that has no formal name. But now they have a voice.”
Other ‘Silence Breakers’ featured include Rose McGowan, Selma Blair, Terry Crews, Alyssa Milano, Sara Gelser, Wendy Walsh, and Megyn Kelly.
The lead-up to Time’s unveiling of “Person of the Year” featured a bit of drama involving President Trump.
In November, Trump said in a tweet that he “took a pass” when Time called to say he was “probably” going to be its “Person of the Year.” Time denied this ever occurred.
“The President is incorrect about how we choose Person of the Year,” the magazine tweeted. “Time does not comment on our choice until publication, which is December 6.” Trump was named Time’s first runner-up.
Time’s eventual choice for the highest honor is especially interesting in light of this, as multiple women have accused Trump himself of sexual harassment and assault.