Over the last week, the number of women who have come forward accusing Donald Trump of #sexual assault has reached double digits, and the serial misogynist - I mean, Republican Candidate for President of the United States - continues to cry foul while showing zero remorse or any semblance of humanity. The tired cycle of victim blaming, dismissal, and disbelief to which we’ve become accustomed continues to run amok - shocker. And Senior Communications Adviser to the Trump campaign, Jason Miller, released a statement Thursday citing the Times’ piece alleging these assaults as “fiction...a completely false, coordinated character assassination against Mr. Trump” that "trivializes sexual assault.” Grab your popcorn, kids – the Trump campaign is losing it.
Exposing ≠ trivializing
Despite choking asthmatically on the polluted air emitted from Trump’s dangerously divisive, every -ist and -phobic, fear mongering narrative that has failed to espouse anything even remotely rooted in fact for the last 17 months, I still found that statement to be particularly negligent. The condescending insinuation that these women – victims of sexual assault – and the Times – revealing an abusive predator for what he is – were somehow trivializing the very thing they were exposing is so astoundingly obtuse and nefarious. And it feels all too familiar.
First, blaming the media for the plummeting perception of Trump’s character is like Ryan Murphy blaming literally anyone else for the demise of any one of his shows post-season two – Kurt Hummel deserved better, Murphy, and that’s a straight up fact. Second, no, Mr. Miller – your candidate trivializes sexual assault. In fact, over the last week he and his supporters have crafted it into a repellent art form. It’s like listening to an aggressively creepy, knock-off version of a popular R&B tune for women-hating half-wits on repeat…or, Robin Thicke. For instance:
- Bragging about having the power and celebrity to get away with sexual assault.
- Dismissing this as “locker room banter,” threatening to sue publications, refusing accountability, claiming the election is rigged, and then somehow having the gall to present himself as a martyr.
- Demanding why these women didn’t come forward sooner instead of demanding justice.
- Pointing the finger at Bill Clinton's past sexual behavior to somehow fault Hillary Clinton for "bad judgment."
- Having a history of victim blaming, criticizing, body shaming (which is honestly amazing coming from someone with both the look and temperament of a crossbreed between a rabid citrus Golem and a frumpy, toupeed cockroach), intimidating, or automatically not believing women.
- Supporters trending #RepealThe19th in response to a recent poll that showed Trump would win if only men voted in this election.
All of this trivializes sexual assault (isn't sexism fun?)
Third, this has become a globally-displayed microcosm indicative of the cyclical culture surrounding why most people don’t report sexual assault: the National Sexual Violence Resource Center states “one in five women and one in 71 men will be raped at some point in their lives,” yet “rape is the most under-reported crime” – in fact, only 63% of sexual assaults and rapes are reported to the police. That victims of sexual assault are systemically failed all the time, and that many refute this clear connection between Trump’s blasé response and rampant rape culture, trivializes sexual assault.
But the Times piece and the women coming forward to expose Trump? They merely confirmed him to be the sexist, narcissistic, privileged, weak, pathological liar absolutely no one should be surprised he is. So, Mr. Miller, they aren’t trivializing sexual assault, this isn’t character assassination, and the election isn’t rigged. It’s actually distressing how neatly this all falls in line with the characterization of Trump that America has come to know. It begs the question: how in the world are we here three weeks before election day? #Donald Trump #Election 2016