This week: The latest on Harvey Weinstein’s trial, the harassment women experience on dating apps and a fanny pack we love.
Today’s featured news
Even as strides have been made in gender equality, a new Gallup survey found that among heterosexual couples, those ages 18 to 34 were no more likely to divide most house chores equally than older couples. As the New York Times reports, those findings — coupled with other research that found that almost a quarter of high school seniors said the ideal family arrangement consisted of the man working full time and the woman staying home — show the persistence of entrenched gender roles in the household.
Researchers have different theories on why these ideas about gender roles have remained so fixed: It could be that while men are happy to have a partner who also works, they may not be happy doing more chores. What is clear is that women’s disproportionate time spent on housework and child care is a leading cause of the gender pay gap, as the Times reports.
Two bills that saw movement in the House of Representatives last week were seen as victories for women. On Tuesday, the House voted overwhelmingly to approve the creation of a national women’s history museum in Washington. According to the text of the bill, the museum would include collections “relating to women’s contributions to various fields and throughout different periods of history” as well as “exhibitions and programs that recognize diverse perspectives on women’s history and contributions.
And on Thursday, the House voted to remove a 1982 deadline for ratification by the states for the Equal Rights Amendment. Last month, Virginia became the crucial 38th state to ratify the amendment, and the deadline for ratification was seen as an obstacle to the amendment actually being enacted. But legal challenges remain, including that five states that ratified the amendment in the 1970s have since said they wanted to rescind their votes.
Several lawsuits have been filed over the years alleging that women were discriminated against at Mike Bloomberg’s business-information company, including a case brought by a federal agency and one filed by a former employee, who blamed Bloomberg for creating a culture of sexual harassment and degradation. A review by The Washington Post underscores how Bloomberg and his company, Bloomberg LP, have fought the claims.
As Mike Bloomberg is increasingly viewed as a viable Democratic candidate for president and the #MeToo era has raised the profile of workplace harassment, he is finding that his efforts to prevent disclosure are clashing against demands that he release former employees and complainants from their nondisclosure agreements. Read the full report here.
Weinstein is being tried on two counts of rape involving former aspiring actress Jessica Mann in 2013 and former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006. If the jury finds him guilty of sexually assaulting Mann or Haleyi, the panel can consider counts of predatory sexual assault, for a pattern of misconduct.
In her closing argument, prosecutor Joan Illuzzi-Orbon said Weinstein’s thinking was that “they want to be in the universe [and] the universe is run by me and they don’t get to complain when they’re stepped on or demoralized and raped and abused by the defendant.”
Jurors are slated to begin deliberations Tuesday.
News by the numbers
A Pew Research survey found that unpleasant interactions on online dating platforms were more prevalent among women than men. For example, while 46 percent of women reported they had been sent a sexually explicit message or image they didn’t ask for, 26 percent of men said they had. Women ages 18 to 34 were the likeliest group to be harassed, with 6 in 10 saying someone through a dating site or app continued to contact after they said they weren’t interested.
5 need-to-know stories in 100 words or less
1. The HistoryMakers, an oral archive that’s recorded the stories of more than 3,300 African Americans, launched The WomanMakers initiative with a $1 million gift from Ursula Burns, the former head of Xerox. “We have to value our own stories,” Burns said. The project will focus on recording the stories of black women.
2. On “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” retired NBA star Dwyane Wade spoke about his and actress Gabrielle Union’s 12-year-old child’s decision to use she/her pronouns. Wade said that he and Union are “proud parents” and “proud allies.”
3. Tennessee state Sen. Joey Hensley (R) faced criticism after expressing concern that if menstrual products, including pads and tampons, were included in the state’s upcoming three-day, tax-free weekend, women would buy them in bulk. Clarifying the comments later on Facebook, he wrote: “I am not against adding feminine hygiene products to the tax free weekend holiday. … My concern in Revenue Sub Committee was the cost.”
4. Altra Running announced it is sponsoring two pregnant runners, U.S. national champion and Olympian Alysia Montaño and British marathoner Tina Muir. That’s a rare move in the world of running, and Montaño told Outside magazine that the idea of signing a contract while 37 weeks pregnant would have been inconceivable a year ago.
5. On Friday, demonstrators in Mexico City hurled paint at the entrance to the National Palace to protest the gruesome killing of Ingrid Escamilla earlier this month and other “femicides” — murders of women because of their gender. The country recorded more than 1,000 deaths were classified as femicides last year, part of a historic high of 35,588 killings.
This week, we hear from photographer Tawny Chatmon
Tawny Chatmon’s art is very much influenced by her family: She takes photographs mostly of her three children (but nieces, nephews and kids of friends, too), then digitally manipulates and hand paints them. Her work is currently on display at Fotografiska New York.
The message she wants her photos to convey: “Really, I just want to celebrate the beauty of black children, black motherhood, black culture, black life, black hairstyles.”
How motherhood factors into her art: “Being a mother is one thing, and then understanding that I am the mother of three black children was a whole different realization. The older I got, the more I would see stories — like Trayvon Martin, or black children getting sent home for the hairstyles they were wearing. And going to the museum with my black children and them not seeing themselves on those walls, it just became very important for me to use these art practices as a response.”
On her process:
“I’ll ask my kids if they want to sit for me, and if they don’t, they don’t have to. My middle daughter, she always wants to. But my youngest, it’s really rare when I get a chance to photograph her, because she doesn’t want to be bothered. She has all these rules, like, ‘If you use me, you can’t edit me in this way.’”
How much do you know about your grandmother? For Women’s History Month, we want Lily readers to ask their grandmothers to share their stories. Learn more here.
Things we love but weren’t paid to promote
For the last couple of years, I’ve struggled to find the perfect bag to carry around my essentials. A backpack? Too big. A purse? No, thank you. A fanny pack? I’m intrigued. I personally love wearing this fanny pack across my chest instead of around my waist. I love the bright yellow I chose, and I feel very stylish. I can easily swing the bag around to my front in order to grab something out of it. It’s the perfect size. I was targeted on Instagram and it worked. And now, I look cool.
—Rachel Orr, By The Way design editor and Lily comics editor
[bye-koo] Saying goodbye with a haiku