Editorial, Opinion

EDITORIAL: Revenge porn is an abuse of power — so is dating a staffer

California Representative Katie Hill gave her final speech on the floor of the House of Representatives on Thursday following the leakage of several nude photos of Hill — some of which depict her, naked, with a staffer.

The photos were first published by The Daily Mail, which also posted allegations that Hill had been in a relationship with another staffer more recently. She has faced considerable backlash for the nude photos and her relations with staffers, which eventually led her to resign from her position.

Hill has made several statements since, including in her last Congressional address on Thursday where she emphasized the injustice her situation has been in the fight against revenge porn, given its implications that someone can post another’s nude photos and get them fired.

But by making this a conversation solely about revenge porn, Hill has delegitimized the very real struggle that people face in the workplace in instances like these. Hill ultimately resigned because she had a relationship with a staffer.

It is unfortunate that her nude pictures were leaked given that they were not needed to prove the former relationship, but Hill was not pushed out of Congress because of the pictures. She was pushed out for abusing her power by entering a relationship with someone who worked beneath her.

She has been the first representative affected by the new House rules that were developed in response to the #MeToo movement in order to prevent predatory members from taking advantage of their staffers, as Hill has done.

Her resignation is essentially a perfect execution of what these rules were meant to accomplish, not the result of a misogynistic witch hunt as Hill claims. 

Revenge porn is wrong and should be condemned; in the future, society and Congress must strive to punish the leaking of private nude photos, not the taking of them.

As millenials and younger people get more jobs and attain higher positions, there is much more possibility for scandal given the current digital age. 

Hill’s situation is not important because she has been forced out of her position for nude photos, it is important because Hill abused her experience with revenge porn to manipulate public opinion regarding a scandal that she was responsible for.




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