WASHINGTON: Get ready, guys, for the Year of the Woman

November 25, 2017

Chicago Sun Times: WASHINGTON: Get ready, guys, for the Year of the Woman

By Laura Washington

2017 is the Year of the Woman.

The escalating, daily revelations of sexual harassment and abuse of women by men in high places will continue.

There are many more pathetic, abusive men out there, shaking in their boxer shorts.

You know who you are.  You thought you were going to get away with it.

Get ready.  The women you scorned are coming for you.

You think, well, the president of the United States got away with it.

You’re no Donald J. Trump.

Guys, here’s the deal.  During the 2016 election, numerous women accused the then-Republican presidential candidate of sexual harassment.

(“Thirteen women have publicly come forward with claims that Trump had physically touched them inappropriately in some way,” reported The Washington Post.)

Trump denied, denied, denied.  Trump threatened to sue.

In 2016, his voters didn’t care. Trump was elected anyway. So, last November, he slithered into the White House. Now he serves as the harasser in chief.

Then, a beautiful thing happened. Trump’s election spawned a backlash. Many Americans, especially women, recoiled in horror.

In 2017, they acted. Women took a lead role in creating Indivisible Movements around the nation. Women organized historic marches in every major city. Women are running for office in record numbers, shows data compiled by Emily’s List.

Harassers, they are coming for you. Those women, some of them even girls, who you disrespected with your sleazy come-ons, who you mauled with your slimy hands, who you silenced with your potent threats.

We are coming for you. We are joining them the sisterhood. The women who donned pink “pussy hats” to march in the wintry cold. The women — and men — family, friends. And colleagues, who heard your terrible stories, and verified your testimony.

The reporters, editors and columnists, joined them, steadily digging for more, standing ready to help you tell the ugly truths.

“This is just the tip of the iceberg,” Mike Allen told CNBC last week.

There are “three more big areas to come,” says Allen, founder of Politico and now executive editor at Axios, a digital news platform. “The real vulnerability,” is Wall Street.  “Our reporting shows there are people on Wall Street who are worried.”

He also suggests there may be more out of Congress and the top media outlets in Washington, D.C. and New York City.

“Every Industry Identifying its Creeps,” headlined a Nov. 19 Avios article. “Every industry is scrambling to identify the men behaving badly and do something about it,” Axios reported.

The story offered up a long, sordid string of examples of harassment in politics, tech, restaurants, fashion, advertising, hotels and science, among others.

Women and their allies are also coming for the corporations, governments, and other institutions run mostly by men, who have been complicit, looked the other way, or tried to buy silence.

One example:  In the last 20 years, the U.S. Congress has paid out more than $17.2 million in 268 settlements on Capitol Hill, Axios reported.

There are many more powerful men who will be fired, disgraced and exiled for abusing their power for sexual gain.

The Year of the Woman is just getting started.