Gretchen Carlson Talks "Cultural Shift" in Treatment of Women Claiming Harassment
The former Fox News host, who made waves when she sued then-Fox News CEO Roger Ailes for sexual harassment, talked to Stephen Colbert about her settlement with Ailes, the many women who've come forward to claim they were harassed or assaulted by other powerful men and her book, 'Be Fierce.'
Former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson stopped by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert to promote her book Be Fierce: Stop Harassment and Take Your Power Back in which she details accounts of sexual harassment in the workplace and features various women who have come forward with allegations.
Carlson made waves when she sued then-Fox News CEO Roger Ailes for sexual harassment. After more women came forward with claims of harassment by Ailes, he resigned. Now, Carlson has released a book at a time in which sexual harassment and assault are dominating the news as dozens of women have come forward with claims against Harvey Weinstein, director James Toback and other powerful men.
"Thank God more women are being fierce and have found the courage and bravery from within and are unafraid to come forward and say, 'Me too.' And they're saying they're not going to put up with this crap anymore," Carlson said of the current climate. "And if I had anything to do with that, I am eternally grateful. If I gave the courage to one person to come forward and be fierce, then my job is done."
After Colbert listed the many men who've been accused of assault and harassment in recent weeks, he also pointed out that President Donald Trump had been accused of such behavior. Carlson said she believes the Trump accuser, People magazine reporter Natasha Stoynoff, whom she features in her book. But she finds it significant that the women speaking out now are having their stories heard.
"Those stories [of women accusing Trump] went away pretty quickly. What's changed in our culture, which is amazing because cultural shifts take a long time to change, in just 15 months, all the women who are coming forward now, their stories are still in the news. That is amazing that we're not discounting them anymore," Carlson said.
Colbert said that he thinks that the fact that Carlson came forward and was "proven right was a chink in the armor of the silence that surrounds powerful men."
"It's so true because, especially with settlement agreements, the women are gagged forever for saying what happened to them," Carlson said. "I got a public apology. That never happens in a settlement agreement. And to me that apology was for all the women in America and across the world to let them know 'If you stand up and you speak up, you will be heard.'"
To further change the culture around workplace harassment, Carlson argued that companies should be "hiring back all the women who lost their jobs for coming forward to talk about sexual harassment."