Every day, women, men, and children across America suffer the pain and trauma of sexual assault. From verbal harassment and intimidation to molestation and rape, this crime occurs far too frequently, goes unreported far too often, and leaves long-lasting physical and emotional scars. During National Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we recommit ourselves not only to lifting the veil of secrecy and shame surrounding sexual violence, but also to raising awareness, expanding support for victims, and strengthening our response. Continue reading Presidential Proclamation: National Sexual Assault Awareness Month
This is just over a year old but just came across my desk. The study is: Sexual Assault Victimization Among Straight, Gay/Lesbian, and Bisexual College Students by Jessie Ford and Jose Soto-Marquez, Violence and Gender, June 2016.
I feel it is time for a repost of an essay I wrote about five years ago during an earlier period of turmoil on the internet caused by women and men acknowledging that women are generally under constant sexual harassment and under constant threat of sexual assault.
There may be a few broken links here that I’ll just deaden, but otherwise, I’m not changing the essay at this time.
I want to mention three separate instances of men acting inappropriately towards a woman that occurred to people I know over the last couple of months.
[Trigger warning: Sexual harassment and rape]
In once case, a man drove up to a woman who was just getting out of her car, in a relatively secluded parking lot, to ask her what kind of mileage she got on that model and make. There was nothing exceptional about the car that would cause special interest in this issue. In the second instance, a man skated (on in-line skates) up next to a woman who was skating on a long trail a mile or two into the woods where no one was around, and insisted on “teaching her” how to “draft” which involved him skating to a few inches behind her and holding his hand on the small of her back while he explained how great that felt. In the third instance, a stranger cornered a women in an enclosed space, tried to rape her, and in so doing hit her several times in the head while pulling off her clothing.
OK, lets start out with the assumption that it does not matter who you or anyone else supported in the last election or what your politics are. If it happens, hypothetically, to be the case that a vulnerable person feels threatened by some sort of bully, wouldn’t you like that vulnerable person to know that you are an upstanding citizen of good character who is willing to stand up for that person? This is especially true if you are a teacher, or you work in a retail business, or any place where there might be bullies and victims.
One way to convey your willingness to stand up against bullies is to were some kind of button or pin or label or something that says something like “safety” on it. And when you think about it for a second, why not just wear a safety pin???
Most of the safety pins we had around the house are tiny and nobody would see them if I wore won. So I found some larger ones on line.
The really big ones start to look a bit less like regular safety pins. May be it is a good idea to wear two. I don’t know.
Anyway, here is what I found:
Something that big might have the downside of damaging the clothes it is attached to. On the other hand, it is so large you can probably sew it onto something, like a hat. Or attach it to your car. Let me know if you have ideas.
Then there are these, which look like normal safety pins, but they are not as large. Listed as: Set of 100 Extra-Large 1-3/4″ Safety Pins.
This might be ideal for a teacher, who might wear it as a lapel pin or small broach. It won’t be noticed from across the room at any particular instant, but the teacher’s students will by and by see it and know that this teacher is on their side in case of any bullying, regardless of what the nature of that bullying might happen to be.
By the way, the wearing of safety pins to signal opposition to racist abuses started in the UK after Brexit, according to this.
… until you have cleaned house and stopped embarrassing yourselves. And by clean house, I mean, take are of this deeply offensive bullshit your people are now spewing out.
You have turned a very bad situation into something ten times worse.
As background, this comes from a meeting of national level evangelical leaders who got together to decide what to do about Donald Trump. They decided to fully support Trump, and the woman in the video shown here is giving their arguments. I am not making this up.
Michele Bachmann: Elect Donald Trump Or There Will Be ‘Even More Sexual Assaults’
First, Michele Obama’s full speech earlier today:
You know two news outlets have produced confirming evidence of actual sexual assault by Donald Trump. So, naturally, Trump intends to sue.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s threats to The New York Times for reporting allegations that he committed sexual assault are legally far-fetched and provide a troubling portrait of how a Trump administration would handle the press, according to experts interviewed by Media Matters.
Several experts tell Media Matters his latest threats of legal action against the Times are further evidence of what would likely be a problematic relationship between the press and Trump if he were to be elected president.
“It just confirms how difficult he would be with the press and how he would view the press as an enemy,” George Freeman, Media Law Resource Center executive director and former New York Times assistant legal counsel, said about the latest attack. “It would be a very contentious relationship in all probability, particularly in that his whole character is built on beating up anyone who attacks him.”
Freeman of the Media Law Resource Center called the legal claim “a pure loser.”
“I think it’s all bluster,” he said. “But it’s not surprising given that he is always threatening litigation. As a presidential candidate, he would have to prove actual malice. … It seems to me it would be virtually impossible for Trump to even come close to showing the Times had serious doubts about the claims of groping when the women seem so credible and it was confirmed and substantiated by many other people they had spoken to.”
Read more about that here.
You can’t say who really won the debate, because on Friday, news broke, confirming other news from the prior Monday (and general suspicians) indicating that Donald Trump is not fit to be President in Yet Another Way, and his campaign essentially imploded. So, instead, we’ll ask, “who won the weekend?”
As you know, I’m the last person to write off Donald Trump. From the very beginning, without fail, I’ve been warning you that he’ll do well, that he’ll win the GOP debates, that he’ll win various primaries, that he’ll win the nomination, etc. All of it. I have never once been wrong about this.
The reason I’m never wrong is because I know something that you also know but that you refuse to admit because it is too painful. Most Americans, perhaps way more than a majority, share one or more opinions with the core Republican political and social philosophy. A smaller number, a minority but not fewer than about 40%, agree with most or all of those points of policy. Added to this Republicans tend to work better in lockstep than Democrats.
And this, dear reader, is why Republicans have been mostly in charge for most of the time since the Republican party became what it is today (staring in the 1970s).
Donald Trump, meanwhile perfectly represents most of that ~40% of Americans, and that is why he is their candidate.
However, more than one thing must be in place to win an election. One of these things is having a large and loyal base, and Trump has that. Another is money, from multiple big donors. Trump had that (including himself) but it is gone (except himself). Another is the support of the party elite and all those great surrogates that go out and stump for you. Trump lost whatever he had along those lines a while back, and as of a couple of weeks ago has had absolutely nothing in the way of surrogate support. It has been just Trump and Pence. And now, Pence seems to have stopped campaigning, so it is just Trump over the last few days, today, and tomorrow, at least.
There remained for a while the Basket of Hypocrites, such as Mike Pence, Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz and the others. These are mostly evangelical conservatives who were willing to throw every one in the country under the bus just to defeat Hillary Clinton, regardless of the cost. But with the culmination of sufficient evidence to regard Donald Trump as a supporter and likely doer of sexual assault on arbitrary females as a given part of his privilege, even the Hypocrites can not survive being associated with him.
And for this reason, over the weekend, these rats left the ship.
As of some time over the last 48 hours or so, the Trump Campaign is over, and this is true regardless of any debate.
Then, there was the debate.
One could argue that Trump did better than expected, and Clinton could have done better, but everyone who is not extremely partisan thinks Clinton pretty much won.
So, what do the polls show? A new poll by NBC and the Wall Street Journal, that does not include the debate (because it was conducted on Saturday and Sunday, before the debate) puts Clinton at 46% to Trump’s 35% in a four way match. Head to head, the spit is 52% to 38%, so if some of those third party snowflakes get with the program and actually vote in the election, the spread widens from 11% to 14%.
Those are double digit numbers. We’ve not seen double digit numbers from a major and legit poll since, I think, the start of the national campaign.
I’m pretty sure the debate did not push the polls back the other way. I’m pretty sure this weekend poll reflects the current situation, more or less. Of course, it is only one poll.
Looking at phone polls by major pollsters and/or major news agencies, excluding one outlier because its numbers are so far different (FOX), from September 1 to the present (including the poll mentioned above) we get this from HuffPo Pollster:
OK, now, pretend I’m wearing a Steve Kornacki mask and I’ve got a sharpie.
I could do more, but I think you get the point.
I expect more scandalous news.
Last week there were indications that the NYT had more about taxes that would eventually come out. I’ve heard rumors of a tape with Trump saying the “N-word.” Right now there is strong evidence that Trump is on board with the whole idea of sexual assault, and there is already some information out there about this, but with the Access Hollywood tapes out, may be we will start seeing actual victims, if any, come to the fore. And, there are known to be tapes from The Apprentice said to be similar to, maybe worse than, the Access Hollywood tapes.
These things will not come out today, because today, the news cycle is still finishing with Friday’s information, and still working on the Debate, so any editor or producer with something to say will wait until tomorrow. So, if something is out there, may be we’ll hear of it then. a few days ago I suggested that we’d be seeing approximately one Trump news dump about every four days until the election. The time span between Monday’s revelations (already forgotten) and Friday’s was about four days, right? Then there was friday ..let’s see … (counting on fingers) … friday, saturday, sunday monday, … TUESDAY! So, Tuesday, or maybe Wednesday. Stay tuned.
You know the problem. Not just the release of the “I’d grab her …” tape, but starting before that. Here, watch:
A roughly written Facebook comment by me, reacting to much of the reaction I’m seeing:
To everyone who is saying that Trump is out of the race because of his admitted preference for sexual assault as a way of getting women to like him: Sorry, you are wrong, and you may be living in a bubble.
Do a transect across humanity, in the US. You will find that a double digit percentage of both women and men (though I’ll allow you the possibly true but possibly not true idea that more men than women) view intersexual relationships exactly as Trump views them. Not only that, but they probably view this as both normal and, suddenly, politically preferred.
(While you are doing your transect of society, take notes on decals and bumper stickers on pick up trucks. You will see the correlation between “Trump for President” stickers and “Get her drunk and get her done” stickers.)
Putting this a slightly different way, now that sexual assault is part of the known Trump behavioral repertoire (it already was, but for some reason these remarks are being taken seriously while earlier indications were not), it is now a feature of Republican philosophy (yes, my dear friends and family who are Republicans, you are now part of the Sexual Assault is OK Party, so let’s see how long you can live with that!)
This revelation may affect the distribution of support for Trump at close to the level that a bad debate performance will. Not much, but a little.
Second point: All the talk about replacing trump, or how would that work, etc. etc. is pretty much information free yammering.
On one hand, it is virtually impossible to change a ticket.
No, you can’t replace the Presidential candidate with the VP candidate. It simply does not work that way.That is not what the VP candidate is or does. Even if a ticket was elected and the president elect died, the VP would not take over that position (this doe not apply after the electors have chosen, thanks to Steve for noting my ambiguity here). The VP has no role in party or national politics or governance other than to replace the president on the event of the president’s death, or in certain other situations.
On the other hand, the electors are not legally bound at the federal level to do anything in particular. They are bound at the state level. I’m pretty sure that faithless electors, say, the electors from a state that are supposed to vote for Trump vote for someone else instead, were charged by their state’s attorney, that would be thrown out of court at the federal level like moldy cottage cheese.
Of course, what electors would do this, and for whom would they vote? They’d be from that population of inexperienced but energized by Sanders or Trump to join up, who somehow got to be electors. There are probably no more than a handful of such individuals, most electors are experienced in the process. But in a close election it would only take a few electors voting for a third party to send the entire process to the House of Representatives. This is highly unlikely, but it would give us a non-elected Republican president for four years. Cruz? Romney? Gingrich? the fight would be epic.
It is possible that this process gets ruined so far down the line that this does not work either, and we get to the part in the Constitution that says something like, “Hand the problem over to The Congress and they will figure out, in a manner they deem appropriate, who the next president is”
(The process for the VP is parallel and different. Senate not house, etc.)
So, to summarize:
1) No, this revelation has no real meaning, no real new information, and will have no effect. Trump really is the candidate because he represents the party that nominated him, nothing has changed.
2) Most of the yammering about what might happen or what might be done is based on zero understanding or information about anything.
I made a big ugly graphic to summarize two possible effects: small vs. large. Unfortunately, the Monday debate will be conflated with this effect. Let’s check back on Friday and see.
Of course, according to my four day theory (there will be a major October surprise every four days until the election) there will be yet another big news story on Tuesday (plus or minus one day) so it may be impossible to test this hypothesis.