So just why didn’t Hillary have anything to say Sunday when Donald was stammering about the medieval times we are living in and saying it was just locker room talk? Maybe it was because she too is a big part of the rape culture. Does anyone remember the dress where Hillary’s husband (who was president of the United States) left a semen sample? The dress belonged to a young woman who was a Whitehouse aid. Hillary didn’t do that, her husband did you might be saying. Again, as with Donald, it is not the actions themselves that I find offensive, it is the way it was handled by Hillary.
What do you do if you are the first lady of the United States and your husband has been caught red handed playing sexual shenanigans with much younger Whitehouse aids? Well, if you are Hillary Clinton and you have spent your entire life getting ready for the position you are in now, you not only ignore it, you look for ways to discredit your husband’s victims. Before anyone goes off and says that the aids were not victims because it was consensual, think about this. He is in the ultimate position of power and he is using it to get these young women to do things with him that they would not do otherwise. He probably thought he would never be found out because who would believe an aid over him? Forensics, that’s who Bill. This is why it is generally forbidden in business for supervisors and employees to fraternize, because of the unequal balance of power.
Back to Hillary. She acted to save both herself and her husband when she stood by a cheating spouse and pointed fingers elsewhere. In doing so, she set our country on a course for further accepting rape culture. She didn’t do this single handedly, she did however hold a lot of power herself in this situation to empower women all over the world to take a stand against being wronged and blamed for someone else’s actions. She chose to relinquish that power to the current culture in politics, a culture that blames the weak for actions of the domineering, controlling, powerful entities. The culture of getting ahead at all costs, and banking on the faulty memory of Americans who decide to forget old transgressions and focus on the next thing that comes along.
Both Trump and Clinton have contributed to the acceptance of rape culture. Do I have a solution? Sure, if you see something, say something. We all feel it in our hearts and souls when someone is being treated poorly or unfairly, but rarely do we say anything, especially if it goes against the grain of the current culture. Examples would be the lynching of young black Americans up until the 1960s and maybe even beyond. Who knows what happened at Rosewood Florida in the 1920s? Everyone knew this was wrong but it took a few brave souls to speak out against it to get it to eventually stop.
I recall a time my teenage son and daughter were walking into the store with me, they were arguing and my son either grabbed my daughter by the shoulders or did some other threatening move towards her. There was a man another row over who saw this and did not hesitate to tell my son he needed to straighten up and it was never right to be violent with a woman. Inside I had conflicting thoughts, as a mother I was not proud of my son, and at the same time I felt I should defend him, but I also needed to protect my daughter. As a woman, I was so happy that this man was not afraid to stand up and say something. It’s little moments like this that collectively can make a big difference in society.
Want another example? What about the acceptance of people in the LGBT community? Most were not accepted for who they were and could not even be themselves openly without fear of being critically judged until very recently. It has taken the bravery of some people speaking out against this judgmental attitude instead of just keeping quiet to bring about change. Even today there are people who hold onto the belief that there is something inherently wrong with people who are oriented “differently” and they need to straighten up, but this is a dying belief at least in our country. This is why I still have hope that if enough of us say something, rape culture will eventually die out and respect of person will take its place. When people in positions of power fail to see or realize they are part of the problem, they can not be part of the solution. This needs to change.