While on tour promoting her new book, “BE FIERCE: Stop Harassment and Take Your Power Back,” former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson opened up about sexual harassment and revealed that she had even shown Donald Trump’s infamous “Access Hollywood” tape to her two children — who are 12 and 14.
“When the ‘Access Hollywood’ tape came out with now-President Trump, I played it for my children,” she told interviewer Nancy Armstrong, during a live discussion presented by Build Series and the “Makers” storytelling platform. “I wanted them to see how not to treat human beings. I wanted then to know that human decency, in my mind, supersedes any political policy.”
Watch the clip above.
Recorded in 2005, the Trump “Access Hollywood” tape featured the future president on a hot mic bragging about behavior many people have described as sexual assault, including his claim that he would “grab em by the p—y,” and his statement about one woman that he “moved on her like a b—h.”
Carlson became a symbol of the fight against workplace harassment in 2016 when she filed a lawsuit against Fox News chief Roger Ailes. The suit proced a watershed moment, ultimately leading to Ailes’ ouster from the network he founded. Since then Fox News personalities Bill O’Reilly and Eric Bolling have been fired from the network due to their own harassment scandals.
At the event Tuesday night, Carlson talked frankly about the pitfalls of dealing with sexual harassment in a professional setting, and had choice words about Human Resources departments, which she accused of overwhelmingly favoring powerful executives.
“I actually believe reporting sexual harassment should go to a different part of the company,” she said. “If the harasser is a boss, then just forget it. You, as the employee, have no chance.”
Carlson also talked about two instances of sexual assault she experienced while serving as Miss America in 1989 (previously detailed in an essay for InStyle last week) and talked about why she declined to name the individuals involved.
“It doesn’t really matter,” she said before noting that one of the assaulters is still working in the industry.
“Maybe at some point I’ll decide to make them [public]” she added. “It’s actually a legal issue about why I wouldn’t and I’ve had my fair share of lawyer advice over the last 15 months. So it’s not because I’m not speaking up about it, it’s more of a concern from a legal point of view.”