Dear Donald,


You do not have the right to touch me, any part of me. Ever.


“I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there, and she was married. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything.” (It’s not clear who Trump was talking about.)
“I’m automatically attracted to beautiful [women]—I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything … Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

Do I have to say that? Is that something I need to be upfront about with every guy I meet? Is this what the world has come to now? I hope not. When a candidate for the president of the United States says this and people make excuses for it, it angers me. No, it does not make it better that it was in a private conversation, although I am sure he would say it to most anyone. It does not make it better that someone else would say it. In fact, it makes it worse that we live in a culture that accepts this at all.
I am a rape and sexual assault survivor. I use the word survivor because the rape and sexual assault have changed my life. The rape, over a decade ago, changed my entire life and still affects me. My self worth was shattered in that moment. While I rationally understand it was not my fault, my subconscious can’t let it go so easily. I relieve certain memories at times I least want them there. I have been told to “get over it” and to “move on.” When a person takes your virginity, that was your precious gift from God to give, no one else’s, it is not something you get over. Your trust is shaken. Your ability to love is changed. When a person you are in a relationship touches you when it is unwanted and you have said no, it is assault. When a woman says no, it should mean no. It should mean stop. I don’t know why this is confusing.
I partly blame a society that tells men it is ok to take what they want, whenever they want. I blame the women who are making excuses for such abhorrent behavior. Have we not come far enough? Are women still not respected? How can anyone make jokes and stupid memes about a man admitting he will sexually assault anyone he chooses? I saw one meme comparing the comments Trump made to the book 50 Shades of Grey! A book, in which the lead character went so far as to have the woman signing a waiver accepting the sexual contact. I saw one meme that dismissed the comment as something all men say. ALL MEN? We are doomed if all men think they can grab my “pussy” whenever they want. DO NOT TOUCH me, is what I now apparently have to say to all people with pensises. Is that what we have to do now?
To me, this is beyond politics, but while we are on the subject, I am terrified of having a president that speaks like this. I am more terrified that people are ok with it. You can still vote for him, that is your deal, but do not act like what he says and his general attitude towards women is acceptable. Is that what he means by “make America great again?” Does he mean go back to a time when women didn’t vote? Go back to a time when women had no rights? Go back to a time when women were basically property? That is what it seems to me. As a woman and a mother of a daughter, I can’t pretend that type of speech is acceptable. I will not tolerate a man who thinks he can do anything he wants to anyone he wants. He cannot buy me. I am not for sale. I do not want my daughter to think any man is better than her purely based off the fact that he has a penis. NO.
I am not making excuses for anyone else. I am not saying I agree with all the words or actions of any other candidate. However, I am saying NO to Donald Trump. He has compiled a long list of reasons I will not vote for him, the main one being is general disposition towards most human beings, especially women.
I hope we do not condone this type of behavior and speech as a whole. I hope we can stand up to such disgusting ways as a society. I hope we say no to the rape culture. I hope we can teach our daughters that they are valuable for more than their bodies.
His words should not just be “what every guy says.” I hope men teach their sons that women are to be valued for who they are, not what they look like. I hope that we can move towards having the same opportunities and get paid the same for the work we do. I hope fathers teach their sons to never assume a woman is theirs for the taking. I hope they teach them to cherish the women in their lives.
I hope that one day, the memory of the rape and sexual assaults I experienced do not affect my relationships. That healing comes slowly. That healing will probably last my lifetime. I know I am not alone. I know there are so many women who say nothing because they are shamed as if it is their fault. Honestly, that is what angers me the most about this. By saying his words are ok you are saying what he intended to do (and probably did) are ok with you. You are saying the pain so many women live with is funny. You are validating him. That is why I can’t sit silently.
My rape, my assault are not a meme. My rape, my assault is not a joke. My body is my own to give.
I realize there are so many other issues in this presidential race. As for this issue, I stand firm. I never waiver. My sincerest hope is that one day, this will all go without saying.

I am in no way excusing what any other candidate or person has said or done in reference to sexual assault. This post is addressing these grossly disrespectful comments towards all women that were only followed by a half-hearted apology due only to the fact that they were brought to light by a recording. This post is to say I love my America a heck of a lot more than the America Trump wants. This post is to say clearly we have so far to go with a culture that accepts sexual assault as a joke.


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