As of last week, a vote for Donald Trump has become a vote for a man who, in addition to spouting hateful rhetoric towards women and minority groups, inducing violence at his rallies, and speaking admiringly of dictators such as Saddam Hussein and Kim Jong Un, is no stranger to taking advantage of his celebrity status to sexually assault women.
As most voters already know, Trump was caught on tape prior to filming a 2005 Access Hollywood segment bragging to Billy Bush about how his fame lets him get away with making unwanted sexual advances towards women.
Here are some of the lewd comments the Republican Party’s presidential nominee has made on mic:
- “I moved on her and I failed. I’ll admit it.”
- “I did try and f**k her. She was married.”
- “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything…Grab them by the p***y. You can do anything.”
In response to growing criticism and Republicans distancing themselves from his campaign, Trump called the private conversation “locker room banter” (which he reiterated throughout his second debate with Hillary Clinton on Sunday night). He also went on the offensive against Bill Clinton, calling him a “worst abuser of women” and brought along four Bill Clinton accusers to Sunday’s debate.
Was this strategy successful in shifting the spotlight from Trump’s past? No.
The now infamous video, along with Trump’s response, became cannon fodder for late night comedians. As Late Night host Seth Meyers put it, “There is currently a higher standard for host of the third hour of the ‘Today’ show than there is for Republican nominee for president.” According to NBC Insiders, Billy Bush is negotiating his exit from the Today Show as reported by the NY Times.
John Oliver, host of “Last Week Tonight,” in addition to pointing out that Trump’s apology was far from adequate, took Republicans to task for letting Donald Trump get this far. While the tape led many Republicans to distance themselves from Trump (but not withdraw their support), the fact that this was the last straw is interesting, to say the least. Keep in mind that many members of the Republican Party stuck with him without being outraged as he spouted horrifying comments about women’s bodies, instigated violence at his rallies, advocated for committing war crimes against terrorists’ families, argued in favor of waterboarding, insulted gold star families, etc. in the last year and a half.
Oliver addressed to Republicans that despite knowing all of this, “All of you still thought he should be president. So the only way you get to be shocked and outraged now is if you were cryogenically frozen until Friday afternoon and that Access Hollywood tape was the first thing you saw upon being reanimated. Anything less than that, and this is on you too.”
Host of “The Daily Show,” Trevor Noah, might have been onto something when he remarked that the party had to say “…enough was enough, because the Republicans have won the White House without [Muslims, Mexicans, and Blacks], but this one group they can’t do without: the ladies.” After showing clips featuring Republicans being offended on behalf of their female family members, he remarked, “The Trump tape shouldn’t offend you on behalf of females. It should offend you as a human being.”
As a human being, I was offended after watching that tape.
As a human being, I was incensed that the Republican Party’s nominee, instead of showing remorse, went on the offensive against the spouse of his Democratic rival. Holding Hillary Clinton responsible for her husband’s sexual misconduct is nothing short of ludicrous!
As a human being, I cheered when President Obama denounced Trump’s behavior.
And as a citizen of the United States of America, I cry for the state of my country.
Instead of celebrating how our current Commander-in-Chief last Friday signed into law the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Rights Act, we are faced with the reality that one of our presidential candidates is a vulgar man who has sexually harassed women in the past and if elected, will use the power of the highest office in the land to become an unapologetic Assaulter-in-Chief.
God Bless America.