Opinion. Reading some shocking allegation against Donald Trump should not surprise anyone these days. But maybe some of Trump’s answers should.
At the end of June, US-American journalist E. Jean Carroll published an excerpt from her new book in ‘‘The Cut’’, in which she claims that Trump sexually assaulted her in a dressing room several decades ago. The shocking aspect is – sadly – not that a woman claimed that Trump sexually assaulted her. This is – again: sadly – not the first time this happened. What is really shocking is the way Trump reacted to the allegations against him.
In an interview with the US-American publication ‘‘The Hill’’ Trump argued that all of Carroll’s claims were false – as could be expected. However, his reasoning is more than just a little problematic. The president of the USA is quoted to have said the following: ‘‘I’ll say it with great respect: Number one, she’s not my type. Number two, it never happened. It never happened, OK?’’ Look at the build-up of his argumentation: The argument that he has not sexually assaulted Carroll is only the second one he lists. The first one is ,,she’s not my type’’. Is the crucial point for him that he is not attracted to her? First, this goes against many experts arguing that sexual assault and rape are usually linked to power rather than sexual attraction and lust. Second, this leads to another question: what would have been Trump’s argument if the claim was made by a woman that he officially thinks of as ,his type’, as attractive? And furthermore: if his first reason against the assault is his supposed lack of attraction… does he think that being attracted to her would have made him sexually assaulting her more likely? The US-president did not argue against it by reasoning that he would never sexually assault someone in general but by claiming that he was not attracted to that specific woman. This does not only make Trump more problematic than he already was – if this is even possible – but also supports the lasting idea of many people that sexual assault can be (at least partly) excused by immense sexual attraction. It is problematic on many levels.