During a weekend speech in Paris, former President Obama made some indirect observations on the avalanche of sexual harassment and sexual assault accusations against men in power. The current deluge began with allegations about Hollywood powerhouse producer Harvey Weinstein, and the matter now encompasses several industries, including the political realm, where two Democratic lawmakers are under ethics investigations, one GOP Senate candidate is accused of pedophilia and sexual assault, and the current POTUS recently got fact-checked by Billy Bush over how he bragged about sexually assaulting women.
According to Obama, who did not frame the matter in terms of elected officials but generally around men in power, he believes it’s time for more women to be in charge. Here’s part of what he said, courtesy of the AFP and France 24:
Former US President Barack Obama on Saturday called for more women to be put in positions of power “because men seem to be having some problems these days.”
“Not to generalise but women seem to have a better capacity than men do, partly because of their socialisation,” Obama said at an invitation-only event during a visit to Paris.
Obama never mentioned specific names, of course, although he did make reference to a “temporary absence of American leadership” while discussing climate change — a move that the Telegraph says prompted some scattered laughter. Further, he did not gear the speech around politics, for he was speaking to a room mostly filled with French CEOs, but that’s how some are choosing to read his words. And while women are certainly not immune to being accused of sexual misconduct, the current trend of accusations means that Obama made more than a fair point.