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Dear Donald Trump: Sexual Assault Is NOT “Locker Room Talk”

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Sonoma chapter.

Donald Trump is apparently still running for president (I know, I’m surprised too) and in the latest Trump drama, last weekend an audio feed from his microphone in an interview with Billy Bush in 2005 leaked into the press. Some conservatives, like Tomi Lahren, tried to deflect the attention put on his actual words in this video, saying it’s a well planned media blitz from the Democratic party. Even if it is, it doesn’t excuse what he said. During the three minute video, Trump says several vulgar and sexually expletive things about women such as “Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything” while stating that as a famous man, he can do anything he wants to women.

This isn’t the first time Donald has been blatantly sexist, and as a result, what’s sad is that I wasn’t even slightly surprised to see this as a headline. Here are a few things he’s said over the years:

“Yeah, she’s really something, and what a beauty that one. If I weren’t happily married and, ya know, her father…” -(2015, The Rolling Stones, also in an interview with The View in 2006)

“I’m not saying she’s an unattractive woman, but she’s not beauty, by any stretch of the imagination. And now she’s like a representative of the United Nations and world peace on hunger and all of this crap … It’s called give me a break. But she’s not – in terms of beauty, she’s not a great beauty. She’s OK. But she’s not a great beauty. … I really understand beauty. I do own Miss. Universe. I do own Miss. USA.” (2007, on Larry King)

“You know, it doesn’t really matter what [the media] writes as long as you’ve got a young and beautiful piece of ass” (in an interview with Esquire in 1991)

During the last debate, Donald gave a half-assed apology for the leaked video, one of the first in his career, stating, “Certainly I’m not proud of it. But this is locker room talk.” I happen to disagree (SURPRISE!). All of this type of language facilitated by men, i.e. sexist language, contributes to rape culture which is defined as an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture. Normalizing things like forcibly “kissing” someone even though you know they’re married and “grabbing women’s pussies” are acts often found in cases of sexual assault.

Donald, however, is no stranger to sexual assault. There are three known reports of sexual assault against him, including a case where a 13 year old accused him of drugging and raping her at a party in 1994. His ex-wife, Ivana Trump, admitted in a book entitled Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump by Harry Hurt III that her husband at the time violently attacked her which she describes at the time as “rape”. Later she states, “During a deposition given by me in connection with my matrimonial case, I stated that my husband had raped me, I referred to this as a ‘rape,’ but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense.” Michael Cohen, who’s a part of The Trump Organization, said about the incident, “You cannot rape your spouse.” Cohen is the same person who’s made headlines for arguing with a CNN reporter about what polls have Trump losing, famously stating “SAYS WHO?”. In 1997, a woman filed a lawsuit against Trump after he threw her against a wall and attempted to take off her clothes. While the lawsuit was settled, she still stands by her claims.

So, Donald, what you’re saying isn’t just “locker room talk”, your words have actions, and the world is watching. Women are not just pretty things for you to look at, we’re not just mothers inconveniencing your business, we’re not all either “all legs” or “fat dogs”. Your words will lead to actions, and even if it’s not from you, it may be from your supporters. Donald Trump, ladies and gentleman, is not saying what everyone is thinking, he’s spewing hatred under the guise of anti-political correctness and his hatred will never make America great again.

I urge everyone reading this to register to vote, the deadline in California is October 24th. You can register HERE.

Recommended Articles: Why Should College Women Care About Politics?, Women For Trump: A Response to Cosmopolitan Magazine

Kylie Walker is a senior at Sonoma State University studying creative writing & women's and gender studies. She balances school with napping as much as she posssibly can. She enjoys petting animals and radical feminist theory. She sometimes writes about things other than politics or feminism, but rarely.
Contributor account for HC Sonoma