Note to Donald J. Trump: Stop playing the victim

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Sexual violence: term used to describe “a specific constellation of crimes including sexual harassment, sexual assault, and rape.” — National Institute of Justice

It is something countless Americans endure each year.

I say “countless Americans” because the experience is not unique to women. Men are targeted, too.

Alexandra Bogdanovic
Founder/owner of In Brief Legal Writing Services, Alexandra Bogdanovic. Photo by N. Bogdanovic

In a recent media fact sheet, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center cited a survey in which nearly half the number of women who self-identified as lesbians and half the number of women who self-identified as heterosexual “reported sexual violence other than rape during their lifetimes.” Nearly 75 percent of women who self-identified as bisexual reported the same.

In the same survey, roughly 40 percent of men who self-identified as gay, nearly 50 percent who self-identified as bisexual and approximately 20 percent of those who self-identified as heterosexual said they too experienced sexual violence other than rape.

Another report cited in the same fact sheet indicates that “one in five women and one in 71 men will be raped at some point in their lives.”

And then there are the most heartbreaking statistics of all — those pertaining to the American children preyed upon by sexual predators each year. According to one estimate, one in four girls and one in every six boys will be “sexually abused before they turn 18 years old.”

These are the victims.

U.S. presidential candidate Donald J. Trump, who was caught on tape bragging about and making light of behavior that can definitely be characterized as sexual violence, is decidedly not a victim of anything.

Oh, he says he is. After the 2005 tape in which he bragged about and made light of behavior that could definitely be characterized as sexual violence became public, several women accused him of sexual assault. And he’s been whining and crying about it for days. To hear him tell it, he’s a victim of a media conspiracy, a victim of character assassination, a victim of a slur campaign… and on, and on, and on.

Perhaps his accusers are lying. Or exaggerating.  Or perhaps not.  Perhaps it is a political ploy dreamed up by the Clinton camp and the mainstream media. Or perhaps not. That all remains to be seen.

Hey Donald, There Is No Excuse

What is indisputable is that Donald J. Trump’s “locker room talk” (his words, not mine) was disgusting, reprehensible, vile, inexcusable and indefensible.

In fairness, the Clintons’ conduct (actual and alleged) is also vile, inexcusable and indefensible. But that’s another subject for another blog. For now I’m sticking to the topic at hand.

That Melania Trump said her husband was “egged on” would be laughable if it weren’t so pathetic. To hear Donald J. Trump tell it, he’s a big, tough businessman who doesn’t take c–p from anyone. He does what he wants, when he wants. No one can intimidate him, and so on and so forth…

But we’re supposed to believe that he only engaged in this “locker room talk” because  someone (presumably Billy Bush) pressured him into it? Or because he wanted to be accepted? Or because he wanted to be one of the guys? Come, come now. What a load of garbage. It’s the kind of lame, pitiful, excuse you’d expect from a teenager. As far as I know, Mr. Trump was an adult back in 2005.

Today he is an adult who wants to become president. So my question is this: Should someone who could be so easily influenced and use such poor judgment become the leader of the free world?

Donald J. Trump had an opportunity to exercise true leadership and strength of character 11 years ago. Instead of going along with the “boy talk,” as Melania Trump claims, he had the chance to say, “Hey, man. You know what — that really isn’t cool. Women should be treated with respect. You wouldn’t want someone talking about your mom or sister, or daughter or girlfriend that way. Knock it off…”

But he didn’t.

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