When I was a woman in my early 20s, I was invited to a follow-up business dinner by a very successful man and a female colleague of mine.
I had met the man previously and found him crude, but because it was an opportunity the other woman had courted, I agreed to meet them out of courtesy. When I arrived, I found that my colleague had cancelled at the last minute and I was on my own with him.
What followed, instead of the business meeting I had anticipated, was an extended pitch from this man to essentially live as his kept woman. Financial details were laid out, perks promised (plastic surgery! A new car!), and just in case that wasn’t enticing enough, there would be picnic lunches on the beach.
I was shocked, obviously; also, afraid because we were alone, as he had asked us to meet at his apartment so we could drive to the restaurant together.
As dumbfounded and freaked out as I was, I managed to maintain my composure and attempted to politely refuse his bizarre offer. “No” was not the answer he anticipated, so his first response was an attempt to “sweeten the deal.” When I said “No, thank you” to that, he grabbed me and shook me by the shoulders.
He got up in my face and hissed, “What’s so special about your p*ssy?”
In that moment, I had no idea what would happen next. He was physically stronger than I was, we were alone, and he had laid hands on me in a violent manner.
But I calmly answered his vile inquiry by shaking my head and saying, “Nothing, except the fact that I make the decisions about who has access to it.”
He pushed me away with contempt and told me to get out of his apartment. I walked out to the street, got in my car, and sobbed. Then I drove to a friend’s house because I was afraid to be alone. I never saw that man again, but eventually learned through the grapevine that I was not the only woman who had such an experience with him.
I counted myself lucky that I got away virtually unscathed.
So now we have this audiotape of another “successful” man, bragging about sexually assaulting women by “grabbing them by the p*ssy” because “you can do anything.”
It makes me realize once again that I was lucky I was only shaken by the shoulders by the man who wanted ownership of my “p*ssy” instead of being grabbed by it.
Aren’t those women lucky that they only had their pussies grabbed instead of what Brock Turner did? And isn’t Brock Turner’s victim lucky he used his fingers instead of his penis?
Dear Trump Supporters: NO, we are not LUCKY, none of us. And if you are defending his comments, you are officially a card carrying member of the rape culture.
Women should not have to count on luck in order to not be sexually assaulted. Women should not have to be lucky in order not to be sexually demeaned.
If you don’t believe that women should be treated with respect and have ownership over their own bodies, then yes, Trump is a good candidate for you.
If you now would like to start a conversation about how somehow Hillary is “worse” because she stayed with a man who betrayed their marriage vows, then go have that conversation with every single woman who has stayed with a husband through infidelity, addiction, and other challenging circumstances. Condemn them, too, because that is what you are doing. Take a stand for marriages between perfect people who never make mistakes, and then take another look at your candidate. I hope you don’t mind hypocrisy!
If you now want to start a conversation about how what Trump said was “just talk” then hey, when that man hissed in my face, “What’s so special about your p*ssy,” that was just talk, so he’s probably an okay guy. He was a good businessman, too—made a lot of money suing people—so he would probably be a great President, right? Oh, and about the “just talk” argument for your boy: yes, it was “just talk” about things he actually DID and was PROUD of doing. His talk was actually BRAGGING.
And you know, all of the other things he has said about women, the things he has said about Mexicans and Muslims and people with disabilities—that’s all “just talk” too! It’s not like we have footage of him making a physical mockery of a person born with disabilities, right? It’s not like he was actually sued for racial discrimination, right?
If you are okay with what Trump said (and DID, mind you), then you are okay with what happened to me.
You think men can assume ownership of a woman’s pussy without her consent. You are okay with what happened to Brock Turner’s victim. You are okay with a world in which sexual assault is okay.
It probably comes as no surprise to you that I am not okay with that. If you are a man and you think this is okay? I know a lot more about you, your character, and your attitudes about women than I did yesterday.
If you are a woman and you are okay with it? I can’t even imagine how you have been treated in your life that this seems normal to you.
Speaking of women, Ann Coulter has dismissed this episode as Trump having a “potty mouth,” like he is an errant toddler instead of a grown man capable of being held accountable for his behavior. An errant toddler that she will be voting for as leader of the free world.
So the question is: are you with her?
Read Kara Post-Kennedy every week here on The Good Men Project!