Let's Talk: It's Time to Start Holding Trump Accountable
Trump has been accused of sexual assault once again. Except this time, the assault is rape. This time, the accuser is someone with unimpeachable credibility. And this time, we have to start remembering.
We now have more than a score of women who have publicly accused Donald Trump of sexual misconduct.
Last week, the twenty-second woman came out with allegations against Trump.
This is the story behind E. Jean Carroll's account of her alleged encounter with Donald Trump in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room more than two decades ago https://t.co/8GV1bw9cXA— New York Magazine (@NYMag) June 21, 2019
On Friday, New York Magazine published a cover story by E Jean Carroll, a well known popular columnist and author. She wrote, in the New York Magazine piece, that Trump had sexually assaulted her around 1995, in the dressing room of a department store. Her account details the incident with heartbreaking clarity, beginning with Trump meeting her in the lingerie department, to assaulting and forcibly penetrating her in the trial room.
Every time we hear about an accusation against Trump, it follows the same new cycle. The accusation is made. The media picks it up. Social media flies with it. Trump denies it. Trump distracts us with other tomfoolery. Our goldfish attention span is tempted, and our memories reset.
It’s a terrible cycle, filled with toxic masculinity, showing us exactly how prejudicial and painful patriarchy is, it is an example of the public enabling an abuser, of reinforcing the idea that he can not be held accountable for his actions. It is a cycle that says, whether or not we believe the woman, whether or not #TimesUp, at the end of the day, the man will remain The President.
This time, Trump’s behaviour has been no different so far: He accused Carroll of lying, in order to sell her upcoming book. He stated that he’s never met her - despite the fact that the story includes a photograph of the pair together. He then threatened her, and dropped this precious gem of a statement: “If anyone has information that the Democratic Party is working with Ms. Carroll or New York Magazine, please notify us as soon as possible. The world should know what’s really going on. People should pay dearly for such false accusations.”
And voila - our attention has been shifted to Democrats working with women to discredit the glorious and supreme leader of the free world, the righteous and much-victimised poor President Trump.
Don’t get me wrong - I am in no way downplaying her claim. If anything, this claim needs to be given more attention right now, because this is the first public accusation of rape against Donald J Trump. The previous accusations have all focussed on sexual assault or instances of groping.
There is no hierarchy of sexual assault - there cannot be. No claim can be downplayed, we need to make a change to prevent any further occurance of unimpeded sexual assault by a man in power. Every instance is terrifying, every instance leaves scars of different kinds.
But this accusation, made at this time, by this accuser carries so much weight that if it does fall to the wayside, once again, then we need to re-evaluate how we react to accounts of sexual violence.
So here’s the thing - this time, it has to be different. This time, it falls to us to treat it differently. This time, it has to make a difference, it has to mean Time’s Up, he has to be held accountable. This time has to be the last.
Yeah. We say that every time as well.