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Drop Dead Misogynists (with Gretchen Carlson)

September 24, 2023
Notes
Transcript
Gretchen Carlson sits down with Tim to discuss the fight against sexual harassment, age discrimination, her courage in speaking out against Fox and Roger Ailes, and the advice she has for young girls as they enter a potentially dangerous workplace environment.

Plus, Sarah joins Tim at the top to discuss Cassidy Hutchinson’s accusations against Rudy Guiliani.

Learn more about Life Our Voices, Gretchen’s nonprofit organization, here: https://liftourvoices.org/

This transcript was generated automatically and may contain errors and omissions. Ironically, the transcription service has particular problems with the word “bulwark,” so you may see it mangled as “Bullard,” “Boulart,” or even “bull word.” Enjoy!
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:09

    Hello, and welcome to the Bulwark next level Sunday show. I’m your host, Tim Miller. I’ve got Sarah Longwell with me for a, little convo about the guest that is next, you’ll just have me with Gretchen Carlson of Fox News famed. You might remember the is really one of the leaders of the Me Too movement when she spoke out about the sexual harassment she experienced at Fox by Roger Ailes. She’s written two books, b fierce, and getting real.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:32

    And now has a nonprofit called lift our voices that has successfully advocated for and gotten passed during the Biden administration. A couple of bipartisan legislation that helps, survivors who are dealing with, you know, being silenced in the workplace. We get into all of that. But Sarah Longwell we taped the the Gretchen Carlson interview on Wednesday, two pieces of information have come out that are very related. I thought we could bat around really quick.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:56

    One, Cassedy Hutchenson. And her book says that she was groped by Rudy Giuliani and Rupert Murdochock, the head of Fox has said he resigned. And so I just kind of am curious to you Like, do you remember the Gretchen Charlie Sykes story? And, like, what is your just initial thoughts just about, like, how ingrained this is in conservative culture that we have, you know, the head of Fox America’s mayor. Just all, you know, it’s not like sexual harassment is a partisan issue, but man, there is something unique about the Fox and Conservative culture.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:22

    It seems when it comes to this issue.
  • Speaker 2
    0:01:24

    Yeah. So I don’t necessarily think it’s that the sexual harassment is partisan. I think that the culture of acceptance around it is partisan. Right? Cause I think that there is a real pressure, right?
  • Speaker 2
    0:01:35

    If you are constantly railing against cancel culture as part of being in the sort of conservative tribe, then when it comes for you, you feel differently about it than you might if you were a young Democratic woman who comes up basically being like, no, this is real, and like, I don’t have to tolerate it. Whereas there’s much more sense of you’re gonna be cool. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:57

    Right.
  • Speaker 2
    0:01:57

    You know, in this conservative stuff because, you know, Well, you know, we don’t take ourselves so seriously like the lids. We’re not obsessed with me too. My first thought actually whenever somebody mentions Gretchen Carlson, I’m not sure if this is fair. This is just like knee jerk reaction.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:12

    Sure.
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:13

    Is the trajectory of Gretchen Charlie Sykes career and the trajectory of Megan Kelly’s career. And Megan Kelly, so they both were people who sort of thought that culture there at Fox. I think Gretchen Carlson though in bringing suit, she’s paid this sort of price, right? She’s been out of the tribe whereas Megan Kelly kinda came back on side. Right?
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:36

    And like despite the sexist treatment of Donald Trump is now interviewing him and saying, you know, he’s a real, you know, he’s a real force. He walks into the room and he can’t take your eyes off him. And I think that that difference of one playing the game of being like, see, I’m cool, back on side versus the other one being like, no, I’m gonna keep talking about why this is unacceptable and the way that try to leave that affects them is like pretty interesting. Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:03:00

    And you saw this partisan break in the Russell brand news, right? There’s this Russell brand story that comes out. Totally. It’s like Elon. The people that come to his defense are all in this mega bubble.
  • Speaker 1
    0:03:08

    I’m wondering Gretchen didn’t get because an NDA, I can’t talk about her time at Fox. So she’s some interesting thoughts about her time before Fox and then and then since I’m just wondering, from your perspective as a woman, like, back when you were a Republican in good standing, like watching Fox, did you feel the ick at times? Did you sense that?
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:25

    So I gotta say when I was eighteen Sure. Nineteen ninety eight, and that was Bill Clinton times.
  • Speaker 1
    0:03:31

    Right. Formative.
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:32

    And so for me very formatively was not just what Bill Clinton did, right? Cause he was having this, sexual relations with this girl who wasn’t that much older than I was. But also the way like the feminist community defended him, and I thought that was so gross. And like it really colored how I thought about the parties, right? Because at the time of his impeachment, there’s a bunch of Republicans then talking about the importance of morality, right?
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:56

    And I was sort of steeped in that when I got into the conservative movement though. Got into the conservative movement. I got stories too, bro. And just like what I saw, just what I saw. And how as like a twenty two year old I was pretty like, whoa.
  • Speaker 2
    0:04:10

    These people who talk about how, what devout Catholics they are and Christians, like, I was just a kid who didn’t realize that the gap between what people publicly project and how they behave in their real life that that gap can be really big. And I saw that, and I actually worked, like, with college kids. And I saw stuff from the men, and that was when I saw the, really.
  • Speaker 1
    0:04:34

    I guess the thing just for me, just speaking for myself, I didn’t get a chance to get into this with her. I tried, but, but, you know, I wanted to let her tell her story. Was just I I think what I regret from that period is I know, you know, I was bought in on the hole that has been laid bare as such a farce now, which is, oh, this is joke. Like, we’re just, we’re just joking around. It’s anti PC.
  • Speaker 1
    0:04:54

    Oh, we’re messing around. And what you realize when you have somebody what Gretchen went through and what others went through. There’s often a pretty tight line between people that are making misogynistic jokes and sexist jokes all the time and people that are behaving in really despicable ways in private too. Last thing I wanted to ask you about just kind of on a positive note about all this is, well, I guess it’s both. Ron DeSantis it’s positive in other sense, it’s like shockingly negative.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:17

    Is there just are no men. It’s just ugly. Cassie Hutchton is going through this. Like, Mark Meadows hasn’t said anything. The positive side of this is just the bravery of Gretchen Carlson and Cassidy who have, like, had to go and others, but, but, you know, this is on the news right now that have had to go out a loan.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:32

    And Cassie had to go out a loan on January six alone on the Rudy thing. Gretchen, it’s not like there was resignations. It’s like Steve Ducey and Brian Kilmeade resigned in solidarity with Gretchen. She had to go out alone. Anyway, I just wonder if that kind of, you know, has has landed with you at all.
  • Speaker 2
    0:05:49

    I mean, I remember Cassidy from the January six hearings and actually one of the things that I remember time was, like, it was one of those reasons Liz Cheney ended up being so important to the process. Yeah. Because she was there I think very personally reassuring these young women that they weren’t alone. Like, they were alone. They were alone in terms of the people who had been there and saw what they did.
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:10

    And I also think the bravery in light of the gas lighting that comes, so I just saw this excerpt. And I bet I’ll never forget it. I bet I’ve brain burn on it. It’s about Rudy trying to put his hand up her skirt and she shoots a look at John easement, right? She because this is a thing, right?
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:25

    A woman do they look at somebody else who’s right there? And be like, help. Like, are you gonna say something and that he would just, like, looked at her? Like, he leered at her. Right?
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:34

    He just, like, did nothing in return. The way that I think that would make a person feel on the inside, not just the person doing it, the silence of all the people around, and the people who, even if they’re not out there, you know, hitting you for it, or like, throwing dirt at you, which a lot of people did at Cassidy, but even if they’re just being quiet, like, when she said, like, she went looking for Mark, right, her boss. And the fact that, like, that guy, that guy defended Trump. He never stood up for her. For a political movement that is obsessed with manhood, The extent to which they are such small, such useless examples of men is always striking to me.
  • Speaker 1
    0:07:09

    Great way to end it. Amen to that. You’ll enjoy this. Up next, Gretchen Carlson. I’ll be back with Sarah and JBL on Wednesday.
  • Speaker 1
    0:07:17

    The first of our friends at acid tongue. Peace. Hello and welcome to the Bulwark next level Sunday interview. I’m your host Tim Miller. I am just so honored to be here with Gretchen Carlson.
  • Speaker 1
    0:07:44

    You might know her. As the nineteen eighty nine miss America from Minnesota, or she was a co anchor on the first two woman anchor major market newscast in Cleveland, Ohio, shout out Jim Swift for flagging that for me. She is a Fox News host who is an early part of the Me Too movement after allegations against Roger Ailes. And now most importantly, founder of Lyft our voices and nonprofit fighting for women in the workplace. Gretchen, thanks so much for doing this.
  • Speaker 3
    0:08:07

    Hey, great to see you, Tim.
  • Speaker 1
    0:08:09

    I just wanna start by just saying There just were so few people in this last kind of decade that I felt like spoke up and spoke out, you know, when many types of abuse were happening from leaders, particularly in the conservative movement, but but across the board. And so I just wanna start by asking you, like, Where do you think summoned that courage from?
  • Speaker 3
    0:08:31

    Well, I always say that it’s not like something that you decide the night before.
  • Speaker 4
    0:08:35

    Hey, I’m gonna take on one of
  • Speaker 3
    0:08:37

    the most powerful men in the world overnight. This is something that was very scary. It was the biggest decision of my life. You know what kind of power he he wielded,
  • Speaker 1
    0:08:46

    I do.
  • Speaker 3
    0:08:47

    You know, arguably the most powerful man in media and beyond. So I, you know, I I a credit I guess the way I was raised by my parents in a small town in Minnesota who really taught me that I could be anything I wanted to be in life, but that I was gonna have to work incredibly hard. And so they taught me to be gutsy and to speak up for myself. And that’s really that little girl that I thought about before I decided to jump off a cliff. And I really planned this for a long period of time, and I wanted to make sure that I had all my ducks in a row because seven years ago, we’ve gotten a lot better now that seven years ago, women were never believed.
  • Speaker 3
    0:09:22

    And so, you know, the number one thing my lawyer sent to me is they’re gonna kill you. Like, they’re they’re gonna come after you, malign you, kill you, do everything they can to bring you down. And so, you know, I wanted to make sure that I had more than just a he said. She said. And, you know, having no idea what was gonna happen to me quite honestly, the next minute or the next day.
  • Speaker 3
    0:09:42

    And it, was scary. A lot of it’s fuzzy for the first couple of weeks, but really what buoyed my spirits was that I realized Holy crap. Like, this is not just me. I started hearing from all these women across our country, and I realized it was an epidemic that was being covered up. So there were two epidemics.
  • Speaker 3
    0:10:01

    The epidemic of being treated like crap in the workplace, but also the silencing of all of that. And and that’s when I decided to roll up my sleeves and get to work try and change it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:10:12

    And so I wanna talk about that. But just for context for folks listening to this podcast, you know, the Bulwark has, a certain percentage of the audience are sperned former Republican Fox News watching type. So I’m sure there’ll be some listeners that want the dish, and and there’s some limits that you have on that. I I wanna kind of explain that because it also relates to the to the work that you’re doing. So talk to us about the NDA situation, yours in particular, but then also just how pernicious that is, and and then we’ll get into what you’re doing to address that.
  • Speaker 3
    0:10:39

    Well, if there are listeners out there who are former Fox viewers, I’m one of them too. So, same company. Haven’t watched for for going on more than seven years. So look, NDAs, as you say, are pernicious. One third of all Americans sign them on their first day of work, which is crazy because they think they’re just signing to protect trade secrets, which I agree with.
  • Speaker 3
    0:11:01

    The company should be able to do that. But they are so much more wide ranging. And so, basically, you’re signing away your your voice and your truth before anything happens to you potentially. That’s how crazy it is. So I signed one of these at Fox I also signed something called a forced arbitration agreement, which by next year, eighty four percent of all Americans will sign.
  • Speaker 3
    0:11:25

    When they start their first day of work, which is crazy. That has exploded as well. And these are the two evils that I’m fighting against that most people have no idea what they are. So forced deportation puts you into this secret chamber where you don’t go in front of a jury. It’s the easiest way to explain it.
  • Speaker 3
    0:11:41

    It’s the way that companies have been covering up their dirty laundry for forty years. Only two percent of the time does the complainant win in that chamber. So it’s totally stacked against you. I had a forced arbitration clause. I would have been forced into that silence as well, had my lawyers not figured out to sue Ailes personally to make my case public.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:01

    They were trying to circumvent my arbitration clause. Okay? I also have an NDA, which millions of Americans have And I have well, I had a lot of them. I had one when I signed to start there. I had one when I resolved my case with Fox.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:14

    And not knowing that I would help to instigate an international movement where I’d actually be working later on to get rid of NDAs. Like, I had no idea. I thought it was just part of the process. I don’t own my own voice, Tim. I still don’t own my own truth.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:29

    I can’t talk to you about what happened to me at Fox. I can’t talk to you about people that I worked with there in any great detail. There’s been a movie made about my story called Bombshell. There’s been a min mini series call loudest voice. I can’t even tell you if those portrayals of me are accurate.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:46

    That’s how wide ranging this NDA is, and it’s with three separate parties. It it it continues with Ayl’s family even though he’s dead. That’s how crazy this is. So What I’m doing now is I may never own my own truth, which is fine because I carved out in my resolution that I would be able to talk about these issues and I’ve taken full advantage of that. But I’m working to do all of this so that other people own their own truths.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:10

    So I wanna talk about the legislation on that, but just really quick. Why, on the fox part, Ailes, as you said, is dead? New leadership is there now. Like, why won’t they just let you go?
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:19

    No. It’s not really new leadership.
  • Speaker 4
    0:13:21

    That’s fair. That’s true. It’s people that it’s
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:23

    people that were there, but in theory, it’s It’s new humans, maybe. Let’s put it that way.
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:27

    No, Suzanne. Suzanne is still there. And so is, the second guy in command.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:31

    Jay. Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:32

    Yeah. See, I I I lose who they are.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:34

    Have you tried to pressure them to let you free? To let you go, shouldn’t they be under pressure for that?
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:39

    We have sent Oh, no. No. No. We have sent FedExes to to the chair of the board who was the VP candidate at one point. Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:46

    Alright.
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:48

    And, we’ve had no response. Listen. They’re not gonna respond to us because then they would have to acknowledge that they actually received the FedEx that demanded that they release us out of our NDAs. So my NDAs with Fox News, it’s also with the parent company and it’s with Ailes family. Now arguably, my lawyers say I could probably get around the Ailes family part because he’s how can I defame a person who’s not living anymore?
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:10

    Right. Sure.
  • Speaker 3
    0:14:11

    But this is how they do it to make sure that you never have a voice. And to your question about Why won’t they let me out now? I’ll let your listeners surmise why they won’t let me out because I know a lot. I know a lot.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:26

    Yet another profound courage from Paul Ryan. Okay. I wanna get back into some Fox stuff that you can maybe talk about at least a little bit in general in a little bit, but let’s just dig in here really quick on the The piece of legislation. Right? So President Biden has now signed legislation that left our voices was pushing for past bipartisan in the house and the senate.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:44

    Explain the bills and and what the change is gonna be for women, well, and I guess men potentially who are victims of harassment going forward.
  • Speaker 3
    0:14:50

    Well, this is a five year slog. As I said, I rolled up my leaves after my story to pay tribute to all the people who came before me who didn’t have a voice and who never worked again quite honestly for simply having the courage to come forward. So I I started, partnering with people on the hill who were really passionate about these issues for arbitration and NDAs, but they kinda needed a a more public face to to help them bring it to the next level. So it was like the perfect storm. And Do you
  • Speaker 1
    0:15:14

    wanna shout out anybody in the hill who’s been really good on this?
  • Speaker 3
    0:15:17

    Oh, yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, okay. So sponsors of my bills have been, Senator Kirsten Gilloran from New York Democrat and Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican from South Carolina.
  • Speaker 3
    0:15:25

    Probably the only thing they agree on. You know, they they’ve been champions on this, and, especially Lindsey, you know, look, he he rallied the troops on the public inside with my help. And, you know, he has, for whatever reason, he believes in my issues of getting rid of this this stuff. But look, it was really hard to get Republicans on board quite honestly. So I needed ten Republican senators, and it took me a long time to get there.
  • Speaker 3
    0:15:53

    In fact, I had a chart in my kitchen with their names who I was targeting. And every time I got one, my kids and I would do a happy dance in the kitchen. I mean, it was just a huge deal. Finally got to ten when I got senator, Rob Portman. And so then, you know, Schumer knew that if it went to the floor, it would pass.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:11

    I mean, there’s so much in the weeds of trying to get legislation passed. So after five years, you know, we we got there. And and the ending, it’s a mouthful. The ending forced arbitration of sexual assault and sexual harassment act was signed into law by the president on March second last year. I was there.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:28

    I spoke. I introduced him in the east room of the White House, And it was bipartisan. And there were so many survivors there. This is the biggest labor law change in the last one hundred years And what it means is that women or men who face sexual misconduct at work no longer can be forced into the secret chamber of arbitration. They have a choice.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:48

    And that is it’s monumental in in trying to bring these cases to, to the right conclusion. Then eight months later, later we went back to the drawing board or before that because we got another law passed in December of that year called the state out act, and this one gets rid of NDAs for sexual misconduct predisputed. So if you sign one of those NDAs, I talked about when you started work on your first day, and then something bad happens to you regarding sexual misconduct, you own your own voice up until the time you actually file some sort of claim. It’s not as far as we wanted it to go. Yep.
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:23

    But the what we could get bi partisans.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:25

    So that’s kind of weird. So then the NDA still applies to, I guess, the arbitration process and the things that happen after you file your claim. That the Well,
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:33

    they can’t no. You can’t be forced into partition, but for example, if let’s say you file a complaint and then the company says, Hey, we’ll give you ten bucks. If you sign the NDA and don’t work here anymore. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:45

    Right.
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:45

    That’s what we were trying to get rid of.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:46

    Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:47

    Because what we’re trying to do as an organization with our voices is also change culture, which is actually more difficult than passing bipartisan legislation in this era. Just saying something. Culture is so screwed up. Because we’re in this cycle of people have the courage to come forward and complain. We immediately think, oh, we gotta get rid of them.
  • Speaker 3
    0:18:09

    And how how do we silence them and how do we get rid of them? And I’m trying to change that too because the person that comes forward If they’re telling the truth, they should be able to keep working. Yeah. That, you know, it’s not like, oh, let’s take away her profession or his profession because they face gender discrimination or they face race discrimination. It’s it’s so it’s so ridiculous how it’s back back password.
  • Speaker 3
    0:18:31

    And so I’m also trying to change culture and and passing these laws helps to push people in the right direction to start also celebrating people quite potentially that come forward and say something wrong.
  • Speaker 1
    0:18:45

    Right. So you said that you didn’t get everything you want. Are there other things in the hop or now? Like other pieces of it? Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:18:51

    So what else are you trying to get done?
  • Speaker 3
    0:18:53

    So as an organization, lift our voices, we’re not just about sexual misconduct. We’re about all protected classes. So our next Bill, that we introduced this past June where we could get Republicans and Democrats to come together on was age discrimination with forced arbitration. So this bill would simply be an amendment to the law that we already passed, which was the big hall. And so it’s very simple now to just add in one line and this also applies to age discrimination.
  • Speaker 3
    0:19:20

    And by the way, did you know that we’re almost all in that bucket because it’s anything over forty. So you basically work maybe seventeen years where you’re not. Potentially in that bucket. And then as Americans, we’re working longer and longer. So forty to sixty to sixty five to seventy to seventy five.
  • Speaker 3
    0:19:39

    You know, we’re we’re growing in this age gap where but people are pushed out because of their age. And so we feel like this is also really important. And we hope now that Congress is back in session, although they’ve got a lot of stuff going on. Some of it silly, that they’ll actually get down to business and and pass this law as well.
  • Speaker 1
    0:19:56

    I was listening to one of your other interviews from years ago. You said it was a long slog. So you’ve been doing these interviews for a while now. And, one thing that was a little pointing for me was that you were you seemed excited to have president Donald Trump sign this bill, you know, given his background and sexual harassment. Because you were working on this while he was still president.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:15

    Right?
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:15

    Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:16

    So I was wondering, do you think that were they fighting behind the scenes to block it? Do you know?
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:20

    Gosh. He was never gonna sign this thing. He’s never
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:22

    gonna sign.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:23

    I mean, I may have said that in an interview at the time because I was, you know, hopeful.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:26

    Trying to galvanize. Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:27

    Trying to galvanize. I mean, I’m not gonna go give an interview and say he’s never sign it. But come on.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:31

    He he
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:32

    came out against me a week after I filed my claims and said that he believed Ails from everything he had read. Well, there’s two problems with that. I’m not sure he reads much. And, and and secondarily, like, that is just such a typical misogynistic response to a person who comes forward that they just automatically believe the man just because. And it says a lot to me about maybe their own personal behavior.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:55

    Why they wouldn’t want somebody looking into their past, which we came to find out he had a ton of claims against himself. So, yeah, I may have said that five six years ago, but I knew it would never pass. And so that’s quite honestly why we why we reintroduced it more recently.
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:10

    We’ll get on president Biden. For that, I had Robbie Camplin, who was Eugene Carroll’s lawyer on this podcast a couple weeks ago. Uh-huh. Have you talked to any of them? Any of the accusers, of the former president or Eugene, you know, what what’s your sense of of their, you know, their struggle and what they’ve been doing?
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:25

    We support each other on Twitter and, you know, I’m fully in her Camp. Actually, there was, another Trump complainant Natasha Stoynoff, who was an editor at People Magazine, who claims that he forcibly kissed her When Melania was pregnant at at
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:41

    at Mar a lago. Right. Yeah.
  • Speaker 4
    0:21:42

    And
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:42

    she’s and Natasha’s actually the one when I was writing my book, be fierce, after my story at Fox, She was the one who actually told me that two other things episodes that had happened to me in my twenties where men attacked me. She was actually the person who said to me, you realize that was sexual assault depression. And I was like, because as women, we like, something happens to us and then we push it down and we don’t even call it what it actually is, again, back to culture and society and what we’re taught, And so we just we just push it down as far as we can and never talk about it ever again. But now now we are. So, yes, I’m I’m I’m in touch with many of the women who have, had their complaints against Trump.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:20

    And and the number one question I would get out on speeches and and when I would travel to college campuses, was how can Trump still be president with all these allegations against him and we’re watching other CEOs and, you know, other workers fall down for these allegations. And the only answer I could give is if the people voted him in. You know, it’s not like he can be fired. Can be fired in the next election, which happened. But, you know, I don’t know if those I don’t know if those women other than Eugene Carroll.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:49

    Will ever see justice.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:51

    Oh, and again, that is still an issue. He’s the front runner now for the nomination again. But before I do that, there’s something you said at the beginning of that answer about to was it two incidents that you wrote about in the book that were also homosexual harassment. It took you a while to come to terms with identifying them as such. You know, one thing I just was really burning to ask you about because I have a five year old daughter, and I this is just outside of my wheelhouse.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:14

    You know, I’m I’m a boy. I’m gay. I went to all boys high school. Yeah. You know, and it’s, like, I’m worried about this, like, kind of what to pass on.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:22

    And so I’m just wondering, like, do you have advice for young women that come to you just both about protecting themselves and and what to do in situations where it might be a little gray, you know, where you’re trying to decide, was that was that harassment? Was that assault? Like, what what kind of advice do you give to young women in those situations?
  • Speaker 3
    0:23:40

    Well, thank you for the question. And and, actually, the first way I wanna answer it is that you, as a man, play a very important role in this. And The biggest lesson that I’ve learned over the last seven years is that we need men to help us. We need men to understand these issues if they have power at companies to change their policies to not silence people, to to raise women up and pay them fairly, and promote them. I mean, men still run ninety five percent of the Fortune five hundred companies, so we need them.
  • Speaker 3
    0:24:14

    You know, I it’s and oftentimes
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:16

    I’m sorry. I’m told that young white men are being discriminated against right now. They’re they’re still in charge of
  • Speaker 3
    0:24:21

    No. Look. It’s tough to give up power. Okay? Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:24:24

    That that’s what this is all about. And in fact, that’s what sexual misconduct is all about. It’s all about power. And that’s why we’ve seen people from both sides of the of the political parties fall down. This is this is apolitical.
  • Speaker 3
    0:24:36

    This is a problem in America that crosses party lines, which is why it’s so important for us to come together to fix it. But men are a huge part of that equation, and so it starts in how we raise our boys as well as our girls. Boys develop their impressions of women and how we make fun of them and how, you know, throw like a girl and the names that we call weak men. We call them pussies. It never even dawned on me what that word actually is because we’re so used to saying it.
  • Speaker 3
    0:25:03

    That’s he that’s female genitalia that’s making fun of women. And so this is passed on from generation to generation. So we gotta get to our boys to teach them how to respect girls. That’s that is the first thing. And then Look, we do a great job of raising up our girls in society in twenty twenty three, where girls are outpacing boys in in a lot of areas.
  • Speaker 3
    0:25:24

    But then when they get into the workplace, they start facing these kinds of issues because it’s a power trap. And so, you know, my advice is that, the more we band together and speak up about these issues, the more they become common place, and it’s not just you singularly coming forward. But at the same time, you look, I I advise people all the time, personal choice to come forward because you probably are still going to be retaliated against. I’m working hard to change that. But you probably will.
  • Speaker 3
    0:25:54

    So it’s always a personal choice for women. Some women absolutely have to work. They need the money. They can’t come forward. And and that is a crime chain.
  • Speaker 3
    0:26:04

    But I hope by the time your five year old daughter is entering the workplace that I will have made significant amounts of change with laws and culture that we’re on the path to eradicating this. I have two children as well, and they’re older than your daughter, but, They are who I do this work for on a daily basis and everyone else’s children.
  • Speaker 1
    0:26:24

    So you just you spoke about kind of, you know, getting, having support, telling others So, ain’t that just really the fundamental advice of, you know, if you find yourself in this situation and maybe the area is gray, is like finding a colleague. If you’re in school, finding a friend or a or, you know, and kind of communicating with them. Is that basically step one not not batting it down inside you?
  • Speaker 3
    0:26:44

    Exactly. Well, if you can, because remember, a lot of work are signing these NDAs. So that means they can’t even tell a coworker about what’s happening to them. See, it’s all part of the process so that you can’t build
  • Speaker 1
    0:26:55

    So is that still true with the new law?
  • Speaker 3
    0:26:57

    Yes. Oh, yeah. Well, yes. You’re right. That’s not true with sexual misconduct, but if you’re facing any other kind of gender race age disability discrimination, lgbtq plus, you can’t talk about it with their colleagues.
  • Speaker 3
    0:27:09

    But, yes, you’ve made us an important point that now you you can on sexual misconduct. If you go to chapter four of my book, be fierce, it’s my playbook on what people should do, and I highly encourage people to check that out. So the number one thing I say is If you don’t know if what you’re experiencing is actually crossing the line, you you’d need to talk to a lawyer even if it’s just for five minutes because they will give you good advice and employment lawyer about whether or not you have a case. They’ll be able to help you figure out if, you know, if you have any other things in your contract that are gonna include you from coming forward or your handbook for that matter. And the next thing as you say is try to tell somebody if you can, if you’re allowed to, because It’s really important to have allies.
  • Speaker 3
    0:27:50

    So when they say, oh, we don’t believe you, somebody else can say, no, wait a minute. She told me this on such and such a date. She sent me an email, etcetera. And the third thing is to take any evidence that you gather about the situation, like emails, take that stuff home, because I can’t tell you how many people have reached out to me and said that they had gathered all of this evidence. And then when they went to complain, they were promptly fired and not allowed to go back to their office.
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:13

    Yeah. So that’s just three of my of my twelve points in my book. And it look, it’s hard. It’s not clear cut. I’m not gonna be naive enough to say to listeners that if you come forward, everything’s gonna be rosy because it’s probably not.
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:30

    It’s gonna be better than when I came forward, but it’s it’s not perfect yet. And so, you know, we have a lot of work to do. And if and if you wanna help us, You can go to lift our voices dot org and and make a small or big donation. We’re the only organization doing this work in the nation, and we believe that it’s the silver bullet to equity.
  • Speaker 1
    0:28:49

    Yeah. That’s so helpful and good. The earlier point you’re making about the young boys just really resonated with me. I don’t know if you’ve seen this, there’s this viral video going around. There’s there’s this YouTube guy Sneko.
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:00

    So I can edge lord. If you don’t know who Sneko is, that’s that’s that’s your bet that’s better for you. So I don’t no need to Google them. But he’s very popular with young boys. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:08

    And he does this kind of misogynistic anti gay kind of humor. Yeah. Yeah. And there’s this video that’s going on from this weekend. Where there were these young boys, sixth graders.
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:17

    They look up to be about sixth grad on how old they are. At at the football game, and exe sneaky and go up to him and start talking about how all gays should die and I I don’t remember all the other quotes. Exactly, but but they’re misogynistic and anti trans, and he’s just laughing it off and saying, oh, this is all just a big joke. This is all a big joke. I think that this is one area.
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:36

    Obviously, sexual harassment, sexual assault crosses party lines. But I think that this is one area where the conservative world has been particularly bad, right, which is this culture where, oh, free speech culture means we can joke and make fun of women and make fun of gays, and there’s no consequences for that. Like, that doesn’t matter at all. And I just wonder, like, do you kind of reflect on that time in your world, or did you always that was toxic. Have you kind of changed your views on that at all?
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:03

    Like, what’s your sense on that kind of world?
  • Speaker 3
    0:30:05

    Look, I think that we are in this place where somebody like Sneko is popular and raping the minds of our young men, and it’s despicable. But I think we’re here because of Donald Trump. I think we’re here because he allowed all those people with these kinds of thoughts to speak them out loud and make it okay. And I think we’ve gone back decades in how we approach minorities, how we approach Jews with the whole anti Semitism movement, how we approach trans, how we approach gay people. Sorry to say.
  • Speaker 3
    0:30:41

    I think that that all started when He came into power and before, when he was campaigning. And it gave people who were thinking this stuff in the back of their minds the ability to say it out loud and be okay. And that I don’t know if we you know, look, I hope we can put the genie back in the bottle. But and to your point, I think all Republican candidates running for president should voice exactly the opposite if there’s any hope for our democracy and our people coming together.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:12

    Yeah. I mean, because that is just so right. Like, it’s weird that these two things happen at the same time. Right? Just in this thirty minute podcast.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:19

    Right? Like you’ve you’ve talked about how in the seven years, we’ve seen so much progress on the Me too culture and like, you know, we’re not there yet, but just the way victims are are treated. It’s not perfect, but it’s better progress. But the language and the rhetoric that we’re seeing, you know, particularly in the right has like, devolved almost. It’s getting worse simultaneously.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:40

    Maybe there’s a relationship between those two things. I don’t know.
  • Speaker 3
    0:31:42

    That’s a really insightful point, Tim. And I get asked that all the time is, you know, how can we have all this horrible news for women in the last couple of years and for other protected classes And at the same time, be making this progress for the work that I’m doing. And, you know, some people speculate, well, maybe it’s happening because it’s it’s like the antidote too. The bad news. It’s like, okay.
  • Speaker 3
    0:32:07

    Well, we gotta try and do something good then because this is just horrible over here. I’m not exactly sure what the answer is other than we live in a crazy time right now, and that’s kind of what I chalk it up to. I just, like, I just put on the blinders and I just keep forging ahead every single day. Not that I’m naive enough to not think that all this other stuff is happening, but I wanna stay in my lane to make sure that I’m trying to make positive change. And I’m well aware of the negatives, but trying to make sure that I take continue to take steps forward.
  • Speaker 3
    0:32:41

    I don’t know what the answer is, you know. I I said to my kids three Thanksgiving ago, at the Thanksgiving table that our democracy was in peril, And, you know, everyone kind of laughed at me, and I’m I’m unfortunately thinking I was I was kinda right.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:56

    Yeah. I think it might be the inverse of what you’re saying about how people would need good news. I think it might be the opposite, right, that the progress from me too in a weird way caused a backlash. Right? People feel like that that they are asserting their power.
  • Speaker 3
    0:33:08

    It’s a good point. I
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:09

    don’t wanna force too much on this. I’m gonna make you take your blinders off for one second here. I just wanna play. This is from Monday. And I don’t know exactly the rules.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:16

    So you don’t have to necessarily speak about this person. But I think it’s important for listeners here. This is this is Monday, two days ago. Sebastian, can you just play this? It’s ten seconds.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:24

    On on your forward network.
  • Speaker 4
    0:33:25

    If you look at how models are these days, models aren’t that good looking. You look at them in the seventies and the eighties. They were all smokes. Not anymore. If you go and you look outside at the beach, everyone has a tattoo.
  • Speaker 4
    0:33:38

    That’s celebrated. It’s disgusting.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:39

    A lot of laughs there. So I don’t know what you’re allowed to say, but isn’t this just like unbelievable that after having to pay these discrimination lawsuits after all this progress, that just that just like casual sexism?
  • Speaker 3
    0:33:52

    This is on a daily basis coming out of their mouths. So you could rack up something from Tuesday probably, and you could rack from last Friday. I’m not kidding. It’s really horrible. So let me just answer this hypothetically because I can’t say specifically that this is what I’m talking about.
  • Speaker 3
    0:34:09

    Like, this is akin to sneaker. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:12

    Yeah. Right.
  • Speaker 3
    0:34:12

    People are laughing about it. And by the way, hypothetically, some of these same people who are saying these things actually live a different life when they’re not on TV. They have affairs at work even though they’re about family values. They get divorced. They marry people that they they were having affairs with.
  • Speaker 3
    0:34:31

    They, who knows? They probably have tattoos, even though they’re saying that they don’t have tattoos. Just hypothetically, people who speak like it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:38

    Hypothetically. It’s just sick. Anyway, I am. It’s just I I just can’t No. It’s disappointing.
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:43

    You would just think and this makes me worried about the democracy side of things that you’ve brought too. Right? Like, you would think that after paying seven eighty seven million, you know, that after having to pay out sexual harassment lawsuits, having to fire so many executives, like, there might be a wake up call. It’s like, hey, like, maybe we can talk about conservative policies or whatever, have a different vantage point from other Bulwark, but without the sexist conspiratorial stuff, but that doesn’t seem like the the path that they’re going. Nope.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:09

    Okay. Just any final thoughts. It is pretty just three disheartening to look at that presidential primary on the Republican side. You covered all these guys when you were at Fox. Like, what I, are you as disheartened as maybe all of us are that the the party is walking right back into this, you know, somebody that’s now been convicted civilly of rape and all of these other problems one more time?
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:30

    I am, you know, incredibly disappointed that members of Congress didn’t find the courage that I found in so many other did to actually speak the truth. If they’re saying this stuff behind closed doors, I mean, look, I get it. They wanna be reelected. They don’t wanna lose the base blah blah blah blah blah blah. But how are they going to be remembered?
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:49

    You know? The Republicans that have have taken a chance and followed me on my issues, I will never ever forget them. Because they have done the right thing. And those that continue to hide behind supporting Trump. It it I just don’t get it because it might get them the next election But after that, what does it get our country?
  • Speaker 3
    0:36:15

    Like, is nobody thinking to the next level? So, you know, nobody knows what’s gonna happen, but, let’s hope that people come to their senses. And, you know, we could have never predicted that we’d be here. So maybe Maybe we’re off on this and something else surprising is gonna happen. Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:36:32

    So what about the other side of that coin? I mean, just so when you’re saying, you always remember the Republicans stood with you on this. I feel this way about the Never trumpers. Right? Like we were at the Bulwark crowd.
  • Speaker 1
    0:36:40

    We’re at the beginning of this, and it’s just like it never really disappointed me that he won the primary. It was it was disappointing so many of my friends, the people that I admired who I knew knew better, you know, didn’t say it. And so let’s talk about the positive folks. I mean, when you spoke out Was there anybody, ex Fox folks, and anybody in that world that were with you, or did you feel really alone?
  • Speaker 3
    0:37:01

    One hundred percent alone I can tell you on one hand how many people at Fox have ever reached out to me. Now let me say that I think for some of the women there, they were scared shitless. Like, you know, I mean, that’s why the the whole internal investigation had to be moved off property because people were scared to death to say things even inside of the building. Right? And I had one I had one woman who reached out to me and said she only told twenty percent of the truth, but it was enough.
  • Speaker 3
    0:37:29

    So I understand why they wouldn’t reach out. There were two really brave, amazing female reporters who everyone would know, but I can’t name them who did reach out to me. But, you know, look, when you do something like this, you find out who your friends are.
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:46

    Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:37:46

    And I’m fine with not having any, any friends from there anymore. You know, it was it was a great part of my life. I enjoyed certain parts of working there, but it was eleven years of walking down the hallway with a knife in my back with blood dripping up.
  • Speaker 1
    0:38:00

    Like, the amount of cowardly men in this world is just a astonishing. I mean, like, you would just think there would be one out there. It reminded me of, well, just how proud I was of them, but also just how sad it was, you know, having Cassidy Hutchison and Sarah Longwell Matthews, right? Like these young women that were still in the White House on January six being the one spoke out, and it’s just the men just absent everywhere. It’s really shocking.
  • Speaker 3
    0:38:27

    That’s a really good analysis too, because I thought the same thing when I saw them. And same thing with Liz Chang, you know, like, that here, it was all women who were really coming to the forefront. Let me just also say that there was one, foreign foreign based reporter, who is a man at Fox who also reached out to me. He’s he’s no longer there. But, you know, so I don’t wanna make it seem like it was just the
  • Speaker 1
    0:38:47

    Yeah. Sure. Sure. Sure. There were
  • Speaker 3
    0:38:48

    there were five people approximately, and and at least one or two were were men.
  • Speaker 1
    0:38:54

    Alright. Well, let’s go, let’s go into a couple of rapid fire. One, thank you for, maybe I’m sorry if I retraumatized you a little bit better going back through all that, but I do think it’s important to just like to speak that out just that such big organizations how few people there were to do anything. It’s it’s really something. On rapid fire, everybody gets this, but I think it’s probably particularly interesting for you.
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:14

    So you live through all this. Obviously, I think that you would say your principles and your values. You said this beginning. I a lot of this comes from what you were taught as a young woman in Minnesota. Is there anything though that you’ve changed your mind on?
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:27

    Is there anything you kind of like look back on the last ten years and thought? You know, I maybe was naive about this. Maybe I didn’t consider anything like that spring to mind? Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:39:35

    I mean, first and foremost, I think when you work at Fox for eleven years, you kind of are in that bubble, you know. I mean, I’ve always been a registered independent, but I think that you’re that’s being pounded into your head on a daily basis. And so there’s a lot of things that I change my mind on completely. One eighty. So not that I wanna really go into detail other than to say that when when you get out of the bubble, And I think it’s way worse now.
  • Speaker 3
    0:40:01

    But when you, you know, even seven years ago, when when I got out of the bubble, you changed your perceptions and and, you start to be more free.
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:10

    I saw a fun picture from nineteen eighty nine of a billboard. Welcome to Anoca, home of miss America, nineteen eighty nine. That had to be so weird. What was that like to go home and, like, have that billboard be in shut down. It’s not pure pride, feelings?
  • Speaker 3
    0:40:26

    Well, it it only fitting. I think there was, like, ten feet of snow when they unveiled it too. So, of course, that would be what it would be like in Minnesota in January. I’m actually I’m actually going home to Minnesota this week, to pay tribute to my grandfather who was a minister there for thirty five years and grew our church into this mega shirt and to my parents who I’m still blessed to have in my life. So I’m speaking up there.
  • Speaker 3
    0:40:46

    And it’s actually gonna be eighty five degrees, so totally different. But, I guess it was a really proud moment for for Minnesota and and for my community and for for me. And all I can say is I’ve never forgotten my roots. And and the biggest compliment somebody can give me is that I haven’t changed at all from who I was as you know, a little kid growing up in a small town. So I still have a lot of Midwestern sensibilities inside of me, even though I live in the big city, and I try to make sure that I teach that to my kids as well, because I think it’s really important.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:17

    I have a question. Have you seen drop dead gorgeous? No. Oh my gosh. Gretchen Carlson.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:22

    You’ve not seen the movie. Drop dead gorgeous. No. How old are your kids now? How old did you say that?
  • Speaker 3
    0:41:26

    Twenty and eighteen.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:28

    Twenty is a family event for you then. Maybe I don’t know. I might be a little awkward with mom. This is a cult classic from, I don’t know, the early two thousands, and it is about a Minnesota Beauty pageant. I can’t believe that I’m bringing this to you.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:40

    There are so many great actresses in it. What I was gonna ask you is who you were in this. There’s Kirsten Ron DeSantis, Cirsty Ali, Denise Richards, Britney Murphy, our IP, Alice and Janney is in there. It is hilarious. It’s like a farce documentary.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:55

    What? A mockumentary. It’s like a fake mockumentary about a Minnesota Beauty pageant. It is hilarious. And I don’t know.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:03

    Maybe you’ll hate it, and you can let me know. But so that’s that’s the little project. I love drop dead gorgeous. I don’t get to ask my many follow-up questions about drop dead gorgeous, but now and all the listeners. If you need a laugh, can can have a Minnesota beauty pageant movie.
  • Speaker 3
    0:42:16

    Thank you.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:17

    I’ll check it out. So that is it. Do you have anything final? Anything I missed? Final thoughts?
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:22

    You know, leave people at You
  • Speaker 3
    0:42:23

    know, just that that people need to be aware of these issues because they usually aren’t until it’s too late. So please, please look at your contractor, employee handbook, see if you have forced arbitration or NDAs, and help help me on my mission, you know, go to my website, help us spread the word, donate you can.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:40

    Zftar voices. So inspiring. Thank you so much for doing this. Gretchen Carlson, and, hope we can chat again.
  • Speaker 3
    0:42:47

    Thanks, Tim.
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