Trump, Kavanaugh embody dominant male culture
Mia Berry | Tuesday, October 9, 2018
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, the most pronounced form of government hypocrisy has involved the way we treat women as a whole and those who have been sexually assaulted. I get it, almost every industry has shown some hypocritical actions in how it treats women, but the governmental sector seems to be the only industry that doesn’t demand or pursue a level of accountability for the accuser.
At this year’s ESPYs, where over 100 women won the Arthur Ashe Courage award due to the years of sexual abuse by former U.S. Gymnastic team doctor Larry Nassar. Months earlier, Nassar pled guilty and was sentenced up to 175 years in prison. The entertainment industry also took notice when Bill Cosby was sentenced up to ten years in prison, and Harvey Weinstein faced charges almost a year after over 40 women accused Weinstein of sexual assault. For the moment, it was beautiful to see society praise and acknowledge victims, which itself is a rarity. Two industries, two appropriate consequences for inappropriate actions.
Fast forward a few months, to when Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, and sexual assault accusations against Kavanaugh were met with great skepticism. On Trump’s infamous Twitter, he publicly attacked Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, insinuating that if the accusations were true she would’ve reported them. Another example of a powerful man exerting his control and denying the legitimacy of a woman’s claims. Other Republican senators followed suit and even went as far to insinuate what someone did while they were young shouldn’t affect their future. Smoking, drinking or stealing from a store may be forgivable infractions; sexual assault, along with murder, aren’t forgivable.
It was hypocritical in the sense that the same senators who claimed that a transgender bathroom bill would put the safety of women at risk didn’t seem too overly concerned with allegations that one of their own could have sexually assaulted a woman.
Adding insult to injury, Trump openly mocked Ford’s testimony, which Sarah Sanders basically justified by saying Trump was just “quoting facts.” It’s not surprising that Trump took this stance, especially given his own previous sexual assault allegations and the “grab her by the p—-y” remarks he made prior to the presidential election. Other than some verbal backlash by constituents, what real consequence did Trump face for perpetuating rape culture? None. What consequence will Brett Kavanaugh face? None. There are more rewards than consequences.
Today, Trump in still in office and Kavanaugh will now serve a life sentence on the highest court in the nation. Even if both are completely innocent, which is hard to ever fully know, there needs to be a change in how we handle senators and presidents accused of sexual assault and other heinous crimes. They need to be held to same accountability as everyone else. Right now, from where I stand, it appears the future of country rests on two powerful man, who have proven the they’re above the law. We should be ashamed we allowed this to happen.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.