Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Sunday, October 09, 2016

Trump's latest creepiness

Every Woman in America Knows Donald Trump and Billy Bush

Margaret Atwood said, “Men are afraid women will laugh at them; women are afraid men will kill them.”

But it’s a little more complicated than that. More omnipresent than the fear of death-by-men among most American women is the fear that every time we leave men alone together in a room, they talk about us like how Donald Trump and Billy Bush talked about women in footage that leaked Friday. We fear that while men may treat us with manners in public, in private and among themselves they are disparaging us as lessers. We fear that behind every closed door is a room full of men basking in our low-grade humiliation. And the 2016 election has brought all those fears to the surface.

The footage the punditry is now (unfortunately) calling “Pussygate” hit the waning hours of the workweek like a Charley horse because, for women, this scenario is the sum of a lifetime of anxiety. We know these guys, laughing about how easy it is to sexually assault us and dismissing it as harmless horny banter. We’re worried we’re married to them, or dating them, or one of them is our dad or our boss or our brother. We know somebody is doing what Trump and Bush did; we just hope they’re not doing it to us.

We’re worried we are Melania Trump, newly-married and pregnant with the child of a man who brags to a member of the media how amazing it is to be famous, because being famous means he can grab women’s pussies and kiss them without their consent. We’re worried we’re at home vomiting during our first trimester while our husband vomits unwanted affection on a soap opera actress. We're worried we'll one day be put in a position to say the sort of things Melania had to say after the video surfaced: "The words my husband used are unacceptable and offensive to me. This does not represent the man that I know."

We’re worried we are Ivanka Trump, who has stood up for her father at every turn, reassuring audiences that he can’t be all that bad since he raised her into such a poised and confident woman. We’re worried that our fathers are talking about our tits to their friends, or trying to fuck our friends. We’re worried that the men we have stood up for and believed in are secretly garbage.

We’re worried we’re Nancy O’Dell, the married Access Hollywood host Donald Trump bragged about attempting to seduce. We all have known at least one person who tried to—if I may coin a term— “Donald Trump” us, men who are older or more powerful taking a sudden interest in who we are. We’re kind to them, to be polite. We try to hold them at arm’s length. And then next thing we know, a tiny-handed orange man is trying to French us in a furniture store. When these things happen, we extract ourselves from the scenario wondering what we did wrong, what led the orange man to believe that it was acceptable to take it that far. We’ve been raised to believe that telling men no is embarrassing. We’ve been raised to please men, and the orange man is displeased. We feel bad. We hope he never talks about it to his friends, and we especially hope he will not go on to recount our humiliation to a colleague of ours. We know now that he does, sometimes .....

Yeah :(


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