Trump’s message at a Mississippi rally is an attack on all sexual assault survivors

At a rally in Mississippi on Tuesday evening, President Trump mocked Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh, Supreme Court hopeful.

Following Ford’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, Republicans have avoided attacking her directly. They’ve claimed they do believe something happened to her, and empathize with her because of it, but they do not believe the assault was at the hands of Kavanaugh.

Trump seemed to be following their lead, it seemed, until he spoke at the rally. He imitated Ford during her testimony, exaggerating the fact that she failed to recall some details about the night in question.

“How did you get home? I don't remember,” Trump said, imitating both Ford and her interrogator. “How'd you get there? I don't remember. Where is the place? I don't remember. How many years ago was it? I don't know.”

His remarks were met with applause and cheering from both men and women in the crowd as he continued.

"What neighborhood was it in? I don't know. Where's the house? I don't know. Upstairs, downstairs -- where was it? I don't know -- but I had one beer. That's the only thing I remember.”

He then said that Kavanaugh’s life is “in tatters” and urged the crowd to think of the judge’s wife and daughters. He also claimed that accusers “want to destroy people” and that “these are really evil people.”

Following the rally, Senator Lindsey Graham, a fierce Kavanaugh defender, said that he “didn’t particularly like” Trump’s comments and “would tell him, knock it off. You’re not helping.”

Senator Jeff Flake also condemned Trump’s remarks, saying that “there is no time and no place for remarks like that, but to discuss something this sensitive at a political rally is just not right.”

The sad part about all of this? We’ve come to expect this from our president. With his criticisms of the #MeToo movement and seemingly constant derogatory comments towards women, anyone would be able to guess what his opinion on Ford’s accusations would be-- none of his comments come as a surprise.

And yet, the most shocking part of the rally was how the audience reacted to his comments.

While he imitates Ford and attempts to make her trauma and pain a mockery, they cheer. While he claims that the men are the ones under attack in this country instead of the people being sexually assaulted, they cheer. They raise their “Make America Great Again” signs higher and proudly clap for their president, the accused sexual predator.

Trump claims that this is a dangerous time for men in our country, when in reality, he is making it a dangerous time for all sexual assault survivors. By making these comments he is telling Dr. Blasey Ford and millions of other survivors that their stories, their pain, their suffering doesn’t matter. He is setting a precedent that supporting accusers and demeaning those coming forward with their stories is okay. He is saying that victims should just stay silent, because all they’re doing is ruining someone’s life.

While his words protect Kavanaugh, they attack survivors all over the world.