Since 1927, Time magazine has awarded a person, group of people, object, or place as its “Person of The Year,” an award given to those who have influenced events surrounding that year, for better or for worse.
And 2017 marks the year of the “silence breakers” as the magazine gives its award to those behind the #MeToo movement, which took a massive stance against sexual harassment.time/Instagram
The overwhelming stance against sexual harassment began after the many sexual assault and harassment allegations surrounding disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein came to light.
The magazine’s cover features women ranging from celebrities, such as Taylor Swift and actress Ashley Judd, to a former Uber engineer and a strawberry picker.
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In the Instagram post debuting the big reveal, Time presented a video featuring women and men from the hashtag #MeToo campaign.
The “Me Too” campaign was started by social activist Tarana Burke more than a decade ago, although following the Weinstein reports, actress Alyssa Milano brought back the campaign as she became one of the first high-profile celebrities to push the moment.
I’m honored to be a part of the Time Person Year issue with @TaranaBurke. This is for every woman who came forward. This is for every woman who was brave enough to say #MeToo. I hear you. I stand with you. I see you. I am you. #BreakTheSilence pic.twitter.com/MRSSKKPWeu
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) December 6, 2017
As for why the “silence breakers” were chosen, Edward Felsenthal, Time’s editor in chief, called it the biggest shift in culture since the 1960s.
According to NBC, Felsenthal said in a statement:
The galvanizing actions of the women on our cover … along with those of hundreds of others, and of many men as well, have unleashed one of the highest-velocity shifts in our culture since the 1960s.
The idea that influential, inspirational individuals shape the world could not be more apt this year. For giving voice to open secrets, for moving whisper networks onto social networks, for pushing us all to stop accepting the unacceptable, The Silence Breakers are the 2017 Person of the Year.
The Time article features a number of men and women elaborating further on their stories that have helped shift society.
Time concludes its piece by imploring that anger will not amend history wrongs, but instead, conversation and legislation will be the key to ending sexual assault and bigotry.