In case you missed it, Donald Trump brushed his lewd 2005 tape as “locker room talk.” The Trump campaign seemed to imply that it is normal for men to discuss assaulting women in locker rooms. No, that’s not true and saying so is not okay. The campaign does live in its own alternative reality, however. So, perhaps that shouldn’t surprise us. Here are six lessons I took away from the weekend –
1. Twitter was on fire this weekend. There’s a dark side to Twitter and that’s a worthy subject of a different blog post. However, during a weekend when there’s so much news and commentary, Twitter is by far the most interesting place to be. I rarely use Twitter. But, this weekend, I was checking my Twitter feed every few hours.
2. There were a couple of very powerful threads on Twitter. One of them was when author Kelly Oxford asked women to share their sexual assault stories. A million women shared their stories. It was heartrending.
3. While the tape caused great damage to the Trump campaign, FiveThirtyEight shared that 10% of Trump supporters actually had a more positive view of the candidate after the tape went out. As Nate Silver put it, this is something else.
4. Muslims lit up Twitter with #MuslimsReportStuff last night. Human creativity and humor are beautiful things.
5. I could sense the false equivalence as I watched the debate yesterday. I could feel myself hoping Hillary came out as warm, inspiring and coherent. As long as Trump didn’t commit murder on screen, he’d probably do okay. Not okay.
6. Back to the women issue, it was nice to see Republican leaders denounce it. However, they all spoke about the fact that they had wives, daughters and mothers to whom this was insulting. Don’t they know any Mexican immigrants? Muslims? What about an example for their sons?
It frustrates me when people keep associating sexual assaults with their daughters. Sure, their daughters are the ones who are affected. But, it is their sons who could either be indulging such talk in said locker rooms or denouncing it.
I decided to cap myself at six. The list is long.
A month or so ago, I had a related post up here. Someone in the comments asked about the idea of voting in protest. I mentioned then that I didn’t have a point of view. I do now. If you share similar values and world view, then Trump is scary. Then again, if you don’t, Hillary is a liar. I still find it hard to believe that you could think she’s a worse human being than Trump. That, I think is a result of unconscious gender bias. Either way, will all this change anyone’s mind or cause them to support Hillary while they were supporting Trump? Probably not. Most people have made up their mind. Their friends who share “news” on Facebook keeps reinforcing that view.
But, I think Clay Shirky’s assertion that “There’s no such thing as a protest vote” is spot on. There isn’t. That’s just the way the system is set up.
Not okay. But, as history shows, realizing that is hopefully a step toward making it better.