By Devyn Jauch
As a millennial, a college student, a liberal, and—most importantly—a woman, these is nothing that could ever make me consider voting for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.
Unless you have been living under a rock these past few weeks, you’ve probably heard about some of Trump’s most recently exposed scandals and allegations. Trump has been caught on tape laughing about consensual encounters with women and, in light of that, many women have come forward with claims that Trump has sexually assaulted them in the past. Now, these events are only the most recent. Throughout the campaign, and even for years prior, Trump has not been shy about his opinion on women and women’s rights.
Let’s look at his comments about 1996 Miss Universe winner Alicia Machado, whom he started referring to as ‘Miss Piggy’ or ‘Miss Housekeeping.’ Or what about his comments to the many female reporters who dare to differ with his ideologies or even question him? And then there are his sexual comments towards his own daughter. These all create one very clear picture: Donald Trump has a blatant disregard for women.
But we need to focus more on the current scandals and how they impact the campaign. In short, things do not look good for Donald. The comments, and his response to them, have shown the country his true character. He has the mindset that because he is rich and famous, the rules do not and will not apply to him. He is impulsive and negligent. Are these really characteristics that we want in our president? Sure, Trump has apologized to his family and to the American people, but what about the women he assaulted? To them, he has said nothing. In fact, he has stated that many of the women who are now coming forward are just looking for attention and a chance in the spotlight. This further adds insult to injury. It takes courage to step forward about a sexual assault, especially when you are accusing someone in a position of power. And rather than owning up to what he probably did, Trump further victimizes the women.
Now many have argued that Trump’s recent scandals and Bill Clinton’s scandals during his presidency make the election equal. However, that could not be further from the truth. Bill Clinton is not running for president. Hillary Clinton is. And she has shown time and time again that she is not her husband. On the other hand, Trump is running for president, and he is the one being accused. If elected, he will be the one making the executive decisions, he will be the leader of the country. Do we really want an accused rapist and proven misogynist as the face of America? Because at the end of the day, that is who Trump really is.
His actions show that he has no respect for women and that he views sexual assault as a joke. The country is already running rampant with rape culture, who’s to say how that culture would grow if Trump were to be in power? Women would likely continue to experience job and wage discrimination, threats of punishment for abortions, and who knows—Trump supporters have even talked about repealing the 19th Amendment.
Let’s compare that potential with some current political motions. On Oct. 7, President Obama signed a Bill of Rights for survivors of sexual assaults, giving survivors better access to and autonomy over their rape kits. Meanwhile, Donald Trump is dismissing allegations of rape as cries for attention.
I personally am a survivor of multiple sexual assaults, and a victim of rape culture and judgement in reporting, especially on college campuses. Trump’s treatment of women disgusts me, as he is showing the country that this is an acceptable way to act toward and speak about women.
Whether you are a woman or not, you know a woman—your mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend. Trump’s comments must be seen as wrong. No matter what your political views, it’s important to think about the effects the next POTUS will have on our country’s character. Do we want a country where women are further objectified, or do we want a country of equality? I want equality. I want to be seen as a person, not an object available for the sexual pleasure of men. With that goal in mind, there is nothing that Trump could do in the following few weeks preceding the election that would make me vote for him. #ImWithHer.