Newsweek Cover Controversy: Orange Penis-Shaped Balloon Targets President

“Trump Rules Garden of D*cks, Sparked #MeToo Movement”

Well, Newsweek has outdone itself! A new cover story all about the mountain of sexual abuse allegations coming out of Hollywood is all pinned on President Trump and what’s worse, the cover is an orange penis-shaped balloon getting popped by a woman’s hand. Nice touch.



Nina Burleigh — because a woman would have to write this — brazenly titled her piece, “How Donald Trump Rules America’s Garden of Dicks and Sparked the #MeToo Movement.” The lead photo puts Trump next to Harvey Weinstein, Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, and Bill Cosby. Bill Clinton is tucked in there and disgraced journalist Mark Halperin brings up the rear:

Burleigh begins the article with a Trump quote from a New York magazine article published 25 years ago: “Women, you have to treat ‘em like shit.” Now that the tone was set, she goes on to describe this mythical place she calls the “Garden of Dicks" and how Trump is the evil ogre that rules there:

After centuries of indifference to or even tacit (and sometimes open) sanctioning of sexual harassment, abuse or assault, we are suddenly in the midst of a cock conflagration. Powerful men in Hollywood, politics, journalism and many other fields are being pilloried, sacked or jailed for piggish or even criminal behavior toward women.

To understand how this bonfire started, we must speak frankly about the Garden of Dicks, a mythical place in the caveman lobe of the male brain. Like that other primeval paradise, the Garden of Eden, men have tried for millennia to create it here on Earth.

The Garden of Dicks is a Hooters. It’s an NFL locker room. It’s the Vatican. It’s the Rolling Stones’ private jet. It’s Harvey Weinstein’s suite at the Tribeca Grand Hotel… In the Garden of Dicks, the sense of entitlement regarding female bodies is so massive that many men assume women will “let you do anything,” as Donald Trump has suggested on more than one occasion.

Burleigh’s lengthy diatribe spends less time focusing on the horrendous, and credible, accusations against serial sexual predator Weinstein, who is accused of multiple accounts of rape, in order to skewer Trump for starting the whole mess using nothing more than baseless accusations and hearsay against him. 

But the cover, which was surely meant to provoke, has backfired and is instead serving as a point of unity, even for those who have found Trump guilty in the court of personal opinion. The cover makes light of a serious problem — a balloon with a comic book-style “POP” next to it is no way to take down rampant sexual abuse. Plus, it buries the crimes by becoming nothing more than a Trump hit piece.  Reaction on Twitter was swift with requests for the cover to be recalled: