On Wednesday morning, longtime Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson announced that she was no longer with the network. Carlson had abruptly disappeared from the air in June and fans of her show, The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson, were given no reason for her departure until today.
At roughly the same time the news broke that she’d left Fox, even bigger news broke that she was suing the network’s CEO, Roger Ailes, for sexual harassment. According to the lawsuit, the anchor was fired from Fox last month for refusing to have sex with the 76-year-old CEO:
Ailes has unlawfully retaliated against Carlson and sabotaged her career because she refused his sexual advances and complained about severe and pervasive sexual harassment. Ailes retaliated against Carlson in various ways, as described below, including by terminating her employment on June 23, 2016, and, prior thereto, by among other things, ostracizing, marginalizing and shunning her after making clear to her that these “problems” would not have existed, and could be solved, if she had a sexual relationship with him.
Carlson alleges that when she went to Ailes to speak to him about the way she was being treated at the network, he said,”I think you and I should have had a sexual relationship a long time ago and then you’d be good and better and I’d be good and better.”
After the lawsuit became public knowledge, Carlson released a statement saying that she was proud of the work she’d accomplished at the network but she has “strived to empower women and girls throughout my entire career” and she had to “stand up” for herself.
As for Ailes, he has a long history of mistreating women who work for him. In 2014, Gabriel Sherman, released a book The Loudest Voice In The Room about the tycoon. At the time the book hit shelves, The New York Times wrote:
In one anecdote, a television producer, Randi Harrison, told Mr. Sherman that while negotiating her salary with Mr. Ailes at NBC in the 1980s, he offered her an additional $100 each week ‘if you agree to have sex with me whenever I want.’
It’s not surprising that Carlson was harassed during her time at Fox. The network is extremely misogynistic and has long been a foe of women’s rights for as long as it’s been on the air. It’s only natural that their misogyny would bleed into the behind the scenes environment at the “fair and balanced” network. Unfortunately, Ailes has an army of attorneys at his disposal and will probably further damage Carlson’s reputation and career. Hopefully, she wins the lawsuit because although we do not agree with her political views, no woman deserves to be treated that way by her boss or anybody else.
Read her lawsuit in full, HERE.
Featured image via video screenshot