'Time' Magazine Names 'The Silence Breakers' as 2017 Person of the Year
Time has named its "Person of the Year" and it's not just one person — it's a group of women the magazine says ushered in momentous change in 2017.
"The idea that influential, inspirational individuals shape the world could not be more apt this year," Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal said in a statement Wednesday. "For giving voice to open secrets, for moving whisper networks onto social networks, for pushing us all to stop accepting the unacceptable."
The women gracing the cover are among those who've been dubbed "The Silence Breakers" and they and women like them who've broken with history to go on record with their sexual assault and harassment accusations against powerful men are the 2017 Person of the Year.
They include actress Ashley Judd, whose decision to share her experience with Harvey Weinstein was followed by an avalanche of accusations against the movie magnate.
"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," Felsenthal said.
Weinstein claims to have never touched Judd and denies ever having non-consensual sex with any of his accusers.
But Weinstein is only one of many men who've been named by The Silence Breakers. In its announcement Wednesday, Time wrote:
"Emboldened by Judd, Rose McGowan and a host of other prominent accusers, women everywhere have begun to speak out about the inappropriate, abusive and in some cases illegal behavior they've faced. When multiple harassment claims bring down a charmer like former Today show host Matt Lauer, women who thought they had no recourse see a new, wide-open door. When a movie star says #MeToo, it becomes easier to believe the cook who's been quietly enduring for years."
Judd is joined on the Time cover by Taylor Swift, who won a court victory against a Denver radio DJ who reached under her skirt and grabbed her rear end during a photo shoot then sued her for millions in damages after being fired.
Also on the cover alongside Judd and Swift are Isabel Pascual, a strawberry picker from Mexico; California lobbyist Adama Iwu and former Uber engineer Susan Fowler — all of whom took a stand against a culture of sexual misconduct or misogyny.
"The women and men who have broken their silence span all races, all income classes, all occupations and virtually all corners of the globe. 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," Time wrote.
Runners up on Time's shortlist include Donald Trump (who received the honor last year), North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, special counsel and former FBI director Robert Mueller and former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.