The Broadsheet: May 20th

May 20, 2016, 11:49 AM UTC

Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Oklahoma passes a draconian abortion bill, your fellow readers sound off on high heels, and a new study suggests I should spend more time primping. Enjoy the weekend.


 Fallin's choice. The Oklahoma state legislature yesterday passed an unprecedented bill that would criminalize abortion, making it a felony punishable by up to three years in prison for doctors to perform the procedure. Now the legislation goes to Republican Gov. Mary Fallin, who has five days to decide whether she will sign it. It seems certain that the law—which the only doctor in the state's senate, a Republican, called "insane"—would ultimately be stuck down by the Supreme Court. However, this is still a big moment for Fallin, who has been floated as a possible vice presidential pick for Donald Trump. Her office says she she hasn't made any decisions yet, but her record speaks for itself: Since taking office in 2011, she has signed 18 bills restricting access to abortion and other reproductive healthcare services.


The blowout bonus? Would you ramp up your hair and makeup routine if it meant a bigger paycheck? A new study finds that women who are considered "well-groomed" make more money than their scruffier colleagues. Fortune

 Human side of Huma. Weiner, the new documentary about Anthony Weiner, does more than shine a light on the disgraced former congressman. It also provides a revealing portrait of his wife, Huma Abedin, who is one of Hillary Clinton's closest aides.  Fortune

 Honestly rather surprising. New research suggests that women who are job hunting after taking a break to raise kids should be as upfront about that fact as possible. New York Times

Trackable tampons. Amanda Field is the CEO of my.Flow, a startup that is making a Bluetooth device that tracks the saturation of a tampon and informs the wearer when to change it via a mobile app. The Guardian

 The pass that lasts. Lisa Belkin, chief national correspondent for Yahoo News, writes about an encounter with Donald Trump 29 years ago, in which she says the real estate mogul made a pass at her. She has an insightful take on that ancient run-in (which Trump disputes occurred)—and why it still matters today. Yahoo

 Holmes needs help. Fortune's eagle-eyed Dan Primack spotted something curious on LinkedIn: a job opening for an executive assistant to Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes. Given that the company recently voided the past two years of blood test results from its proprietary machines, seems like the gig might not come with great job security.   Fortune

MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Rebecca Rabinow, the Metropolitan Museum of Art's curator of modern art has been named director of the Menil Collection in Houston. L Brands has hired Jan Singer, former CEO of Spanx, to run Victoria's Secret.


Do you feel pressure to wear high heels at work?

That’s the question I asked you last week, inspired by Nicola Thorp, an employee of outsourcing company Portico, who was sent home without pay from her job as a receptionist at PwC’s London office when she refused to wear shoes with a “2-inch to 4-inch heel.”

Portico has since changed its policy to allow for flat shoes, but the incident has sparked heated conversation about the legality of regulating what female employees can and can’t wear—as well as a broader debate about the way women’s appearances play into how we’re evaluated at work.

Below is a sampling of what your fellow Broadsheet readers had to say:

“This article reminded me of my first interview on Wall Street with Kidder Peabody in 1976. After my interview, they mentioned that the dress code for woman included ‘no trousers.’ I immediately responded that I was no longer interested in the job and walked out. And this is 40 years later! Preposterous!”

– Maureen Barry Somerville, executive assistant, venture capital firm.

“When I first started my career, I did try to wear heels often. I thought heels completed the image of what a successful, career-oriented women looks like in New York. But I quickly realized that wasn’t realistic—at least not until you’ve climbed the ladder to the point where you have a driver to get you around.

Wearing heels can actually restrict you in the office environment. For example, if colleagues are walking to a lunch spot further than a few blocks, someone in heels might be less likely to go for fear of not being able to go the distance. They may miss out on important team bonding. I’ve seen it happen.

Now, I refuse to wear anything that feels restrictive in any way. My goal is to focus on my work and performance—everything else, including cute work outfits, comes in second.”

– Evelyn Frison, co-founder

“I’m a lawyer in New York and am also 5’1. Although I have a big personality, I often feel literally ‘overlooked’ as people see right over my head. Heels make me tilt slightly forward and give me a few extra inches that make me feel more confident. Admittedly, the downsides are blisters, aching arches, a slower pace, and the potential to lose a shoe in sidewalk cracks or cobblestones. However, those are downsides I’m willing to put up with. I am all for whatever makes a woman feel her most confident self, and definitely think that as long as her shoes are not drawing attention in a negative way, a woman should be able to select her own footwear without any comments from the peanut gallery.”

– Hillary Wallace, attorney

To read the rest of the comments, click here.


Walk in our shoes. Speaking of heels, I recommend taking a minute to watch this entertaining video, in which the male employees of Stylist Magazine try to put themselves (possibly literally) in the shoes of their female colleagues.  Fortune

 An internet super sale. Verizon Communications and others are expected to bid around $2 billion to $3 billion for Yahoo's core business. That's significantly less than Marissa Mayer's company has been expected to fetch, with estimates from April putting it between $4 billion and $8 billion. WSJ

 A stellar suit. Meet Lindsay Aitchison, the woman overseeing the creation of the Z-2, NASA's latest spacesuit. Racked

 Kelly vs. the critics. Megyn Kelly hit back at critics who said she was too soft on Donald Trump during her primetime interview, saying that they are biased "against Trump, against Fox News, against the GOP.”  Fortune

 JWT part deux? Another ad exec is being hit with a discrimination suit. Greg Anderson, former president of RAPP U.S., is suing his ex-employer for wrongful termination and discrimination, claiming CEO Alexei Orlov fired him for reporting on Orlov’s “destructive” behavior which allegedly included calling female employees "fat cows" and refusing to promote one woman who he claimed was "too pretty."  Business Journals

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These ads mocking gender bias in tech are spot on  Motto

Muirfield Golf Club can't host British Open after vote against accepting women  Fortune

3 things venture capital should do to bring more women into the business  Boston Globe

Ed Rendell apologizes for 'ugly women' comment  Washington Post


Isn't it strange that it's legal to own a woman this way? Listen Ursula, we want her voice back.

Lady Gaga to Dr. Luke, after learning that his label had nixed a Kesha performance at Sunday's Billboard Music Awards. Dr. Luke has since reversed his decision.