2, Blog Post

Debate #1: Donald Trump’s Rape Culture

The first debate started with a shocker: Fox News host Megyn Kelly asked Donald Trump to answer for how he talks about women. She had very specific examples of things he has called women, such as fat pigs, dogs, slobs, and disgusting animals. He admitted that all of these were true.

Trump’s first response was to say that he had only been speaking about Rosie O’Donnell. Moderator Kelly didn’t let him get away, quickly emphasizing that many of these comments were made to other women on multiple occasions.

Trump’s second response was not an apology, and he launched into political rhetoric and the debate began.

Holy shit.

What we had witnessed was a textbook example of rape culture. If this is a new concept (how did you get here?) rape culture is the environment that permits men to treat women like second class citizens. It doesn’t necessarily involve a physical sexual assault, but does create harmful relationships between men and women that frequently lead to rape.

Rape culture happens when men learn they can treat women like shit if they want, and women learn to accept it. It’s even worse when you realize that often it’s when boys learn they can treat women like shit if they want, and girls learn to accept it.

Back to the debate.

Trump had admitted to treating women like crap. He insulted Rosie O’Donnell and Megyn Kelly. That’s the first problem: he attacked women.

The second problem, and this is EXACTLY what happens every day in classrooms, bars, and work places: No one did a damned thing about it. The audience went wild with applause.

Here were NINE other guys running for the president of the United States of America. They just heard real examples of how Trump speaks to women. THE CORRECT ANSWER would be to call him out. Demand he apologize or leave the stage.

Nothing. Not one word from any GOP candidate.

Rape culture happens when a man harasses or assaults a woman and his friends do nothing to stop it.

We’re an Ohio blog, so we’re going to focus on John Kasich, but they were all guilty.

Kasich did acknowledge Donald Trump, but it wasn’t to demand an apologize. Kasich’s second question followed a description of Trump’s hatred of Mexico and Latino immigrants. Kasich said that, while he doesn’t fully agree with Trump, he felt he had a point.

Kasich’s other interaction was to ask Trump for money. Trump proudly boasted that he had donated to most of the candidates on the stage. The context was that he bought politicians to get business done, removing the pretense that these donations aren’t bribes. Kasich waved his hands and said he’d be happy to get a “donation” from Trump. He actually solicited money on the debate stage.

Kasich’s campaign doubled down on this insane ask by immediately tweeting for money:

Rape culture and shameful money grabs. Welcome to the 2016 presidential campaign.

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