Gayle King on Sexual Harassment Reports: "We Need Men to Join This Conversation"

King, whose 'CBS This Morning' co-host Charlie Rose was fired following accusations of sexual misconduct, made the comments on 'The Late Show' Tuesday.

Gayle King joined Stephen Colbert on CBS's Late Show on Tuesday where she further opened up about her former CBS This Morning co-host Charlie Rose.

Following a damning Washington Post report Monday detailing alleged sexual harassment from eight women, Rose was fired by CBS on Tuesday morning. Bloomberg and PBS, which distributed Rose’s show on the publicly funded network, announced that they would cease to do so on Monday.

Speaking with Colbert on Tuesday night, King said that she doesn't think the accusations coming out are going to stop in the near future. "I don't think it's going to go back to the shadows because women feel empowered to speak up, women are no longer afraid to speak up, but the best part about it is they are now being believed. That's big," she said. However, she added that it can't be "just women" coming forward. "We need men to join this conversation. Nothing is going to change until men join this conversation, too, and more women are in places of power."

Colbert then asked her what men can do to join the conversation. "To listen and to say, 'Look, this is not going to be tolerated, this is not cool, knock it off,'" she explained. "And men who have engaged in this kind of behavior — you know who you are — I get so irritated when people go, 'I wasn't quite certain what sexual harassment is.' No degree is OK."

King had addressed the allegations against Rose on Tuesday's CBS This Morning, saying, "This becomes a moment of truth. I've enjoyed a friendship and a partnership with Charlie for the past five years. I've held him in such high regard, and I'm really struggling because — how do you — what do you say when someone that you deeply care about has done something that is so horrible? How do you wrap your brain around that? I'm really grappling with that. That said, Charlie does not get a pass here. He doesn't get a pass from anyone in this room. We are all affected by this. We are all rocked by this."  

Colbert commended King on addressing the story earlier that morning, particularly given her personal relationship with Rose. “That’s what you have to do," King replied."To be honest with you, it still isn’t easy. It’s still very painful, it’s still very hurtful. Charlie and I worked together, been friends, but when you think about the anguish of those women, despite the friendship, you still have to report the news."

King, who explained she had been booked on Colbert's show weeks before and had not originally planned on talking about Rose, went on to tell the late-night host that it was difficult to be there. "I wanted to cancel because I didn’t want to be sitting here talking about this, but when you think about the job we do at CBS and how hard the people work, I want to know we are a top-notch broadcast operation and that’s why I thought it was important to be here,” she said.

When asked later if she was angry about the news, King responded that she has a "variety of emotions" and that she thinks "we're all sort of reeling; it's a stunning thing that's happened in the last 24 hours."

Once again praising the women who have come forward, she said one good thing that comes from all of this is "that people will speak up and that companies are sending a message that they have zero tolerance for this kind of behavior, and that's very important."

On Wednesday, King continued to report on new claims from three women identified as CBS employees who have come forward with allegations of sexual harassment at the hands of Rose.

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