How Johnny Depp Turned Abuse Allegations Into a Comeback

By 2018, Johnny Depp was bordering on irrelevancy—but he soon gained a tremendous fandom as a public trial unfolded, prompted by abuse allegations from his ex-wife Amber Heard. In December, Heard announced she would no longer be moving forward with her appeal because “cannot afford to risk an impossible bill—one that is not just financial, but also psychological, physical and emotional.”

Depp has paved a new path for accused men in search of cultural capital—and accomplished the very thing women throughout the ages have been baselessly accused of: leveraging victimhood to gain status. Depp, whose career was flailing, became not just a rallying cry for men’s rights and the supposed victimhood of being a successful, wealthy, white man in a changing world, but a newly hot commodity in Hollywood once again with a thriving fan base.

#MeToo Victory: Biden Signs Law Limiting NDAs and Protecting the Right to Speak Out About Sexual Abuse

Since Alyssa Milano’s #MeToo tweet went viral five years ago, 16 states have passed laws blocking employers from requiring employees to sign agreements prohibiting them from speaking out about their experiences of sexual harassment and assault on the job.

Now, Congress has created a new national standard prohibiting this behavior: On Dec. 7, President Biden signed the Speak Out Act, limiting the enforceability of non-disclosure agreements and non-disparagement agreements (NDAs) for sexual harassment and sexual assault disputes.

New Laws Give Sexual Assault Survivors the Freedom to Share Their Stories

When the Ending Forced Arbitration for Sexual Assault and Harassment Act became law, it was a huge step forward for sexual assault and harassment survivors, restoring their right to pursue their best legal path. And now with the signing of the Speak Out Act, we’ve removed another obstacle for survivors, making it even harder for employers to cover up workplace harassment and assault. 

One in three women—disproportionately women of color—have suffered sexual harassment or assault in the workplace. Coupled together, these new laws are a one-two punch that will help survivors tell their stories. 

The War on Women Report: Anti-Abortion Movement Says It’s ‘Pro-Woman’; Kanye West’s Misogynistic Slurs; Brittney Griner’s Appeal Rejected

U.S. patriarchal authoritarianism is on the rise, and democracy is on the decline. But day after day, we stay vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching, and we refuse to go back. This is the War on Women Report.

This month: The anti-abortion movement frames its tactics as “pro-woman,” Kanye West claims Black women are engaging in genocide, the House Committee votes to subpoena Trump, Brittney Griner’s appeal is rejected and more.

#MeToo, Five Years Later

In the five years since it took off like wildfire, the #MeToo campaign has made widespread sexual abuse in the U.S. visible for the first time and inspired a record number of sexual harassment lawsuits against employers. It exposed how our decades-old workplace anti-harassment laws were outdated and often ineffective. In the last five years, 22 states and the District of Columbia passed more than 70 workplace anti-harassment bills in the last five years—many with bipartisan support.

Even still, U.S. rape culture persists and creates an environment where women and girls are disbelieved, survivors are discouraged from reporting abuse, and male abusers are forgiven—or even rewarded—for sexually abusive behavior. Congress must do more.

What Our Primate Ancestors Can Teach Us About Dismantling the Patriarchy: The Ms. Q&A with Diane Rosenfeld

A new book shines an intriguing new light on the possibilities for alliances among women in the ongoing struggle to end men’s violence against women by examining the social organization of one of our closest primate relatives. In The Bonobo Sisterhood, Harvard Law School professor Diane Rosenfeld shows how we have much to learn from the bonobos about how to eliminate male sexual coercion.  

“Patriarchy is not inevitable; the bonobos are living proof of that.”

Survivors Face Backlash For Reporting, 50 Years After Title IX. What Does Justice Look Like For Them?

Title IX created much support for survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault on the basis of sex discrimination, requiring institutions to address such harms in the workplace and in schools.

Ms. spoke with Alexandra Brodsky, civil rights lawyer and co-founder of Know Your IX, about the new backlash survivors still face coming forward, and the new ways activists are fighting for change and survivor-informed support.

We Heart: P!nk’s New Protest Anthem, ‘Irrelevant’

On July 18, the music video for P!nk’s new song, “Irrelevant,” dropped and has since been deemed a ‘protest anthem.’ She explained, “As a woman with an opinion and the fearlessness to voice that opinion, it gets very tiring when the only retort is to tell me how irrelevant I am. I am relevant because I exist and because I am a human being. No one is irrelevant. And no one can take away my voice.”

The proceeds from the new track will be donated to Michelle Obama’s national, nonpartisan voting initiative When We All Vote.

‘Good Luck to You, Leo Grande’: Pleasure as a Path to Wholeness

Good Luck to You, Leo Grandestarring Emma Thompson as Nancy Stokes and Daryl McCormack as Leo Grande is an exploration of whether women, due to internal and external messaging, are allowed to pursue and attain sexual fulfillment. The fact that Nancy has never had an orgasm answers that question.

In a world where we’ve started discussing the critical importance of sexual consent, and in the wake of MeToo, we must address women’s pleasure—making this film not only entertaining, but necessary.