One consistent theme in the otherwise unpredictable U.S. election cycle is how the focus keeps returning, again and again, to the sexual indiscretions of men. The trend has diverted attention away from actual policy proposals, it's detracted from the historic nature of Hillary Clinton's campaign (Emailgate culpability and all), and it's presented the victims of sexual harassment and assault as nothing more than political pawns.
And one of those victims has had about enough.
Yesterday, the 16-year-old alleged victim of disgraced Congressman Anthony Weiner wrote a letter to FBI director James Comey describing what his actions had done to her personally. She criticized the vague language Comey used last week when he told Congress that the FBI had uncovered additional emails to examine as part of the investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server. (The FBI discovered the trove while looking into claims that Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, sent indecent messages to the teenager.) The teenager says the uncertainty of Comey's statement prompted the media "to keep searching to try and find out what evidence [Comey] had uncovered and how. Every media outlet from local to national has contacted me and my family to get my 'story.'"
I hope that by making my letter to you public, you will think about how your actions affect the victims of the crimes you are investigating. The election is important, yes, but what happened to me and how it makes me feel and how others see me, is much more important.
Hers is a vital perspective, and it comes from someone who isn't even old enough to vote.
Strike a pose
Last week, Vogue launched its 22nd global edition: Vogue Arabia. A recent issue of the magazine featured an article on how women can style their hair under a hijab and another on this season’s most stylish abayas. Deena Aljuhani Abdulaziz, a Riyadh-based Saudi princess and former retailer, is its editor. “The Vogue Arabia woman is one who celebrates her tradition but also considers herself a highly educated global citizen,” she said.
Ruzwana Bashir grew up in a Pakistan community in England wearing a long shalwar kameez and a traditional Muslim head scarf every day. In fact, she donned Western clothes only when she started as a student at Oxford. But the 33-year-old co-founder and CEO of Peek, a travel technology startup, says that outsider status has served her well as an entrepreneur. “I had to fight for a lot of things and I developed a grit that has really paid off.”
Centenarian for Clinton
One of the millions of early voters in the U.S. presidential election is Jerry Emmett, a 102-year-old woman from Arizona. The retired teacher, who's six years older than women's right to vote, wants Hillary Clinton to become the U.S.'s first female president. Casting a ballot for the Democrat, Emmett said, "has been my dream."
A power problem
This story examines why sexual harassment seems to flourish in U.S. politics. One theory is that sexual harassment, at its core, is about power, and politics is the ultimate power profession. Plus, political workplaces revolve around one central figure, creating a troublesome hierarchy where reporting on the boss puts everyone's job at risk. “When people are deferential to you for your position, I don’t think it helps,” says Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill.
Facing the music
In the on-going scandal engulfing South Korean President Park Geun-hye, prosecutors said today they intend to bring criminal charges of influence peddling, abuse of power, and attempted fraud against her longtime friend Choi Soon-sil.
The nanny state
As a profession, nannying is booming in China following the government's decision to end its one-child policy. The uptick in births—6.9% this year—has produced a subsequent increase in the need for caretakers. And that higher demand is producing better pay, with nannies earning about $2,200 per month, plus free accommodation and food.
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--Actress Mila Kunis, on sexism in Hollywood.