Donald Trump Defends Using "Schlonged" Against Hillary Clinton In (What Else) A Twitter Tirade
Looks like Donald Trump's latest verbal controversy will sustain itself through the holiday season. On Tuesday, Trump went on Twitter to defend his "schlonged" comment aimed at Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton and insisted that the word was "not vulgar." Relying on multiple 140-character tweets, Trump attempted to legitimize his sexist remarks instead of acknowledging that, hey, maybe this really wasn't OK.
During a rally on Monday, Trump poked fun at Clinton's 2008 primary loss to Barack Obama, saying, "She was favored to win, and she got schlonged." The word, slang for a penis, drew sharp criticism for its sexist tone toward a female candidate and the insinuation that she was "manhandled" in what can be interpreted as a sexualized type of attack. While Clinton has yet to respond, her head of communications earlier on Tuesday tweeted, "We are not responding to Trump but everyone who understands the humiliation this degrading language inflicts on all women should. #imwithher."
It seems Trump did hear from quite a number of folks since he felt compelled to address the situation on his favorite line of communication: Twitter. Trump attacked the mainstream media, or MSM, and accused it of being dishonest in its reporting, pointing to past instances when the word was used in politics.
But as The Washington Post pointed out, it's been rare. The one time a reputable journalist or member of the media used it was NPR's Neal Conan in reference to the failed Walter Mondale and Geraldine Ferraro bid in 1984. The difference, though, was that Conan didn't use the term to explain how a man beat a woman, and Conan doesn't have a reputation for making sexist remarks on the regular. The distinction is subtle but crucial.
Trump then retweeted American journalist Jeff Greenfield's assertion that the term is generally used in New York.
And in case you needed some final thoughts from Trump, he was more than willing to oblige.
What's perhaps more disturbing than a presidential candidate's use of the word is his ardent defense of it. Rather than concede and acknowledge, "Hey, maybe I shouldn't have said this," Trump has stuck to his guns on the issue and has attempted to diminish the dangers of using such sexualized rhetoric against a female candidate.