Trump’s apology for ‘locker room talk’ is rape culture in a nutshell

Donald Trump’s lust for attention hasn’t been a secret throughout his campaign.

The candidate has mocked the disabled, alleged that certain ethnic or religious groups are murderers and degraded women every step of the way. However, his latest implosion has left even the staunchest Trump supporters stunned and distancing themselves from the presidential hopeful.

Even amid calling women slobs and pigs, the worst of Trump’s vindictive attitude toward women emerged Friday in an unedited 2005 conversation between Trump and former “Access Hollywood” host Billy Bush.

“Grab them by the [expletive],” Trump told Bush, explaining his “seduction style.”

“You can do anything. When you’re a star, they let you do it.”

In the clip, Trump later explained how he can’t control himself around “beautiful women.”

“You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful. I just start kissing them,” Trump said. “It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”

The vulgar tape and the criticism led some supporters, including Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and state Rep. Jason Chaffetz, both Republicans, to say that they can no longer support Trump for president, according to the New York Daily News.

Quite possibly the most unsettling reaction regarding the transcript was the statement Trump’s campaign issue shortly after the video was released.

“This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago,” the statement said. “Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course – not even close. I apologize if anybody was offended.”

This comment of “locker room behavior” is remarkably similar to the age-old excuse “boys will be boys,” which was just one of many used in the case of Stanford rapist Brock Turner earlier this year.

These statements contribute to the dangerous climate of rape culture, which is defined as including “jokes, TV, music, advertising, legal jargon, laws, words and imagery that make violence against women and sexual coercion seem so normal that people believe that rape is inevitable,” according to Women Against Violence Against Women.

Rape culture is the view that rape is not a problem, but instead is “just the way things are.”

“Locker room behavior,” “boys will be boys” and “just the way things are” are just a few of many justifications used to perpetuate this behavior that has been exceedingly harmful to women and used to victim-blame in cases of sexual assault.

This is all bad enough for women, especially those who have experienced sexual violence, but the scope of these comments is just as harmful to men.

Trump is doing every single man a great injustice by saying that men are inherently rapists.

If this is just locker room talk, if this is just behavior that all men can empathize with or that all men have expressed, or if men are unable to control their impulses when
distracted by something “beautiful,” then Trump is lowering men’s standards by reducing them to animals who can’t be held responsible for – or even control – their own
actions.

Trump’s words may have been all “fun and games” to the average voter at the beginning of the election; however, the candidate has now insulted more than just a few minorities.

Trump has disrespected every voter.

Categories: Opinion

About Author