He Just Doesn’t Get It

He Just Doesn’t Get It

Too many sadly don't get it. The problem with Trump's video of lewd comments isn't the video, it's the excuses. It's the casual brushing-off of the thing as 'harmless words,' as though there's nothing inherently wrong with the line of thinking that went into it.

Doubtless, you’ve seen the video, read the transcript, or otherwise heard about the latest salvo in this year’s presidential circus. But what’s most appalling, however, is not that Trump said those things; it’s the excuses.

In all fairness, I’ve said some things in ‘the locker room.’ I’ve numbered women on how hot they are. Most men have, when they were boys – i.e. younger and less mature. As a freshman in high school, I was disciplined for writing some inappropriate words to a girl who didn’t respond favorably to my advances. And for good reason; I was crass and totally inappropriate. I don’t specifically remember what I said to her, but I certainly remember sitting in detention for a month.

It was wrong. Period. Even if things are said behind closed doors, among men, in the locker room, golf course, wherever, it’s wrong. It’s wrong because it promotes a way of thinking that damages women. It damages women by the way he thinks of her, which influences the way he acts towards her, and the way he treats her. It degrades, in the male mind, the image of woman to the status of pleasure object and diminishes her value to a point where she can be discarded once she’s over 35 and no longer useful. It dehumanizes women to where self-gratification is the only objective, and therefore, the word consent becomes vague and ambiguous. It’s where we lose the distinction between persistence and harassment.

These are things men teach boys. We’re supposed to, anyway. My father was a thousand miles away when I was in high school, but I was lucky enough to have a male teacher talk to me about my behavior, and give me time to think about it.

What’s unfortunate is that this isn’t being taught. Long before the Moral Right chose this candidate, this attitude has existed. You see it in pop culture, in music, in TV shows where attractive women are used as background decoration, in the grocery store where every other magazine on the shelf is telling women what to look like, and of course, in the rampant permissiveness of those willing to brush off this kind of behavior as ‘locker room banter.’

BTW, Mr. Trump, if you, or any other fifty-nine-year-old man grabs my wife by the p..sy, I’ll cut your hand off.

Michael Patrick Lewis is a teacher, and bestselling author of Edge Of God, and Preferred Rewards. His wife is a ten, in case you haven’t met her.

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