Published: Thu, December 07, 2017
Culture&Arts | By Hattie Nash

'Silence Breakers' named Time magazine's Person of the Year

'Silence Breakers' named Time magazine's Person of the Year

Time magazine named "The Silence Breakers" - women who triggered a #MeToo national outcry over sexual harassment - as the 2017 "Person of the Year".

While originally started by African American activist Tarana Burke 10 years ago, the current #MeToo movement has been credited to actress Alyssa Milano, who tweeted on October 15 - 10 days after the New York Times article ran - that if every woman who had been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote "Me too" as their status, it might give others a sense of the problem's magnitude.

"For giving voice to open secrets, for moving whisper networks onto social networks, for pushing us all to stop accepting the unacceptable, the Silence Breakers are the 2017 Person of the Year".

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The incidents were said to have taken place from the 1960s to the 1980s and are being investigated by Robert J. Cleary, a former USA attorney and the head of investigations at the Proskauer Rose law firm.

The cover image accompanying the story features actress Ashley Judd, Taylor Swift and former Uber engineer Susan Fowler, who have all spoken out against various forms of sexual misconduct.

Ironically enough, the announcement was made Wednesday on NBC's "Today" show, which just fired former host Matt Lauer for his own sexual misconduct.

One of the honorees featured in the story is the woman who started the "Me Too" movement several years ago, Tarana Burke.

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The tweets, Instagram and Facebook posts began after actress-activist Alyssa Milano followed on a suggestion from a friend of a friend on Facebook and tweeted: "If you've been sexually harassed or assaulted write "me too" as a reply to this tweet". With over 12 million women using the hashtag in solidarity and revealing incidents that had taken place in their own lives, the magnitude of the problem was discovered. Another woman, Beverly Young Nelson, said a news conference last month that she was 16 when a 30-year-old Moore locked her in his auto and "attempted to force my head into his crotch".

According to the magazine, President Donald Trump was runner-up with Chinese President Xi Jinping in third for the title. O'Reilly also denies any wrongdoing, but the news company severed its ties with the well-known commentator.

In a tweet, Trump claimed that the the magazine called him to say they were "probably" going to give him the honor, but that he they withdrew the offer after he refused to sit for an interview and photo shoot. She added that "the overall message" of Trump's victory "was that we don't really matter". Time has disputed his account.

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