As the women of the world share their stories of sexual harassment as part of the #MeToo campaign to raise awareness about the universal epidemic of predatory behavior by men against women, it bears remembering how sexism and misogyny runs deeply through the First Family.
As the fallout from the Harvey Weinstein scandal continues to unfold, we can look to the President’s idiot son, Donald Trump Jr., for a textbook example of how misogyny is passed down from father to son and how rape culture is cultivated in American society.
Donald Trump, the current president, has a long and disgusting history of objectifying women, exploiting their bodies for his own personal profit, and abusing them for his own personal pleasure. He’s been accused of sexual assault or serious harassment by over twelve women, trafficked women to work in his modeling agencies, and spent his entire career insulting and demeaning women in public.
That despicable attitude has clearly trickled down to his awful sons. Here’s Donald Trump Jr. saying that women who can’t handle sexual harrassment should go “teach kindergarten.”
“I’m of that mindset — and I’ll get into trouble, I’m sure I’ll get myself in trouble one of these days. If you can’t handle some of the basic stuff that’s become a problem in the workforce today, then you don’t belong in the workforce. Like, you should go maybe teach kindergarten. I think it’s a respectable position.”
Here’s Donald Trump Jr. saying that his father’s behavior is “normal” and “makes him a human.”
“There’s sort of the reality of the situation and then there’s how the media portrays it again. So I mean, listen I know plenty of people. I’ve had conversations like that with plenty of people where people use language off color. They’re talking, two guys, amongst themselves. I’ve seen it time and time again. I think it makes him a human. I think it makes him a normal person not a political robot. He hasn’t spent his whole life waiting for this moment to run for the presidency.”
Here’s Donald Trump Jr. comparing women to chattel.
And here’ Donald Trump Jr. joking about sexual harassment:
This is what rape culture is. Men who refuse to stand up to those around them when they prey on women. Men who joke about women as animals, dehumanizing them and objectifying them in a way that enables their mistreatment. Normalization of sexual harassment as just “part of the workplace” and “makes him a human.”
If we are going to put an end to the mass harassment and assault of women in our society, men have got to step up and acknowledge how their own behaviors contribute to rape culture, how their silence in the face of their peers is complicity in and of itself. The onus can’t be on women alone. It’s time for us to step up.