Donald Trump chose the wrong avenue of attack this time around. At a rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan on Monday night, the Republican candidate attacked Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, declaring that she "got schlonged" by Barack Obama in the 2008 race. He added that her bathroom break during Saturday's Democratic debate was "disgusting" for unstated reasons that he believes are all too obvious (?). Through his gross propagation of sexist language, Trump gave Clinton the opportunity to appeal to women everywhere. He's apparently not as smart as he thinks, and no... This article is not going to be about him. Instead, I'm going to discuss Clinton's poised response and how she ranks in her support for women's rights. Thanks for prompting this important convo, Trump.
Trump foolishly granted her Clinton chance to discuss not one, but two larger issues: bullying and sexism. As it turns out, the Republican candidate employed both last Monday. Firstly, he made the "schlonged" comment. Just not okay. Secondly, he insulted protesters as well as his political opponents. According to CNN, Trump's Grand Rapids speech was one of his most interrupted since he announced he was running for president. Instead of accepting alternate points of view, he directed superficial jabs reminiscent of high school (or even middle school, for that matter). He told one of the protesters that they had a "weak voice" and called the group "a bunch of losers."
During a rally in Iowa on Tuesday, Clinton addressed Trump's immaturity by refusing to directly mention his name. Instead, she referenced the epidemic of bullying and said it has no place in the campaign. Her restraint made her appear more poised than ever.
You're looking at someone who has had a lot of really terrible things said about me. ... I think we are not treating each other with the respect and the care that we should show to each other. And, that's why it's important to stand up to bullies wherever they are and why we shouldn't let anybody bully his way to the Presidency.
In response to his sexist comments, Clinton's director of communications Jennifer Palmieri posted a Tweet that called for a response from all women, letting them know that they should be offended.
Clinton cleverly expanded upon the insult that was directed towards her and applied it all women in a succinct call for action against sexist remarks. In doing so, she mothered a rally against sexism that could potentially result in more women's votes during the primaries.
So far, 13 women Senators have endorsed Clinton, as well as the majority of the Democratic party's elected officials, reported MSNBC on Dec 1. That being said, Clinton is in desperate need of greater support among female voters, making her response to Trump's sexist attack a potential game changer for her. The Washington Post reported that Clinton's support among Democratic female voters dropped from 71 percent in July to 42 percent in September according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll. By standing up to Trump's statements, she may be able to change this.
And it doesn't end there. Clinton is effectively using Trump's inflammatory statements across the board to appeal to people who care about human decency. Unlike the GOP candidate, Clinton has consistently refused to insult the character (or looks) of her fellow running mates. Instead, she's brought more concerning issues to the table when it comes to Trump's racist and hate-mongering commentary. During Saturday's Democratic debate, Hillary Clinton said that Trump's anti-Muslim rhetoric fuels ISIS. On Tuesday, during the rally in Iowa, she refused to retract her statements.
You know, people around the world pay close attention to our elections. And if you go on Arabic television, as we have, and you look at what is being blasted out with video of Mr. Trump being translated into Arabic, "No Muslims coming into the United States," other kinds of derogatory, defamatory statements, it is playing into the hands of the violent jihadists. There is nothing they want more than to be able to claim that the United States is against Islam and against Muslims and that then lights an even bigger fire for them to make their propaganda claims through social media and other ways.
Clinton points out the most important reason why Trump is unfit for the presidency: He's a bigot. So, in less than a week's time, Trump has given Clinton the opportunity to speak out against sexism, bullying, and racism. Perhaps this will teach him to think before he speaks.