Questioning the Sisterhood of the Traveling Misogynist

Questioning the Sisterhood of the Traveling Misogynist

Adrienne BoettingerWednesday,3 August 2016

Many months ago I stopped reacting to every terrible thing that came out of Donald Trump’s mouth. It was an act of self-preservation otherwise I would have had to stop working, sleeping, and even breathing. Every time we turn around he is saying something new and terrible. Whether it’s mocking a disabled reporter, attacking the parents of a fallen Marine who dare to dispute his “knowledge” of the Constitution, besmirching a POW for being captured, or accusing fire marshals of limiting the size of his crowds for political reasons — the angry cantaloupe knows no bounds.

But then the idiot went and opened his mouth about sexual harassment so now it’s about to get real.

Let’s set the scene for those of you who tried to ignore this latest Trumptastic moment in awfulness. First, when questioned about sexual harassment claims against his bud and former Fox News head Roger Ailes, Trump indicated he didn’t believe the alleged victims because Ailes had helped them advance in their careers so he would not have been able to harass them at the same time. Secondly, when questioned what his daughter would have done if sexually harassed, Trump said Ivanka (and Tiffany?) would “find another career or find another company.” Finally, following in the example set by his father, Trump’s son Eric said Ivanka was too “powerful” to “allow herself to be subjected to sexual harassment.”

Donald, let me put your understanding of sexual harassment in the simplest terms possible so that even you can understand it: THIS IS NOT HOW ANY OF THIS WORKS. REMOVE YOUR ODDLY FOLLICLED ORANGE MELON FROM YOUR RECTUM AND ATTEMPT TO USE SOME BRAIN POWER TO DO SOMETHING OTHER THAN PRAISE YOURSELF.

Women—and yes men—are sexually harassed and still “do well” in their careers. Often that’s how their predatory bosses justify to themselves and to the world their despicable treatment of their vulnerable subordinates. No, it’s not strange for the women now accusing Ailes to have previously not accused him or even spoken well of him. They probably liked having a paycheck and were afraid of being fired, blackballed or having their reputations ruined for the rest of their careers or even longer by a human pile of garbage.

And that brings me to my next point, most women can’t just quit their careers or find new companies where they won’t be sexually harassed. Speaking as someone who has been sexually harassed in the workplace and didn’t have the luxury of quitting or magically finding a new job, it really sucks. I have just bit my tongue, pretended it didn’t happen, and tried to ride it out because I was afraid that doing anything more would result in people not believing me, losing credibility with my colleagues, and even not being able to support myself.

Now, for the rotten apple that didn’t fall far from the small-fingered tree, whether or not a woman is “powerful” has nothing to do with whether or not she is harassed. Many powerful women are marked for harassment by fearful, tiny men who are terrified of losing their stranglehold on power (Eric, maybe this is sounding like your dearest papa). Your defense of your father was pathetic and your understanding of the challenges women face in the workplace every day shows you know nothing about business and even less about women.

Finally, I’ve got to ask women who still support Trump: after everything—all the disgusting and despicable things he has said about women and his terrible actions that confirm his decades-long pattern of misogyny–why are you still in this bloviating asshat’s corner? I’m not saying you have to support Hillary Clinton because you’re a woman. I’ve heard from enough of you about the persistent issues you have with her that prevent you from pledging your support. I disagree with you but I respect your right to your opinion. But how in the name of all that is holy are you still supporting Donald Trump?

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Image Credit: Gage Skidmore on Flickr

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