Sexual Assault Isn’t Locker Room Talk: It’s Time For Men To Join Women In Rejecting Trump

Donald Trump continues to defend his boasting about sexual assault. Women long ago saw who Trump really is. Men can not allow Trump to hide behind excuses like “locker room talk.” Men must stand with women in rejecting Donald Trump.

Women have understood that Donald Trump is a dangerous misogynist since the beginning of his campaign. The gender gap in the presidential election polls hasn’t been caused by the fact that Trump is running against a woman, but by Trump’s statements and behavior towards women.

Trump’s history of attacks on women during this campaign alone should have been enough of a warning sign to wake up men. From Megyn Kelly to pushing a reporter, and attacking a former Miss Universe. One of the constants of Trump’s campaign has been his attacks on women.

Many men already knew that Trump’s comments weren’t those of a sexist playboy, but it took a videotape of Trump bragging about sexual assault to wake up the male-dominated press.

Initially, Trump tried to blame his comments on locker room talk, ““This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago. Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course – not even close. I apologize if anyone was offended.”

As a self-described gym rat, I have spent over half of my life in locker rooms, and I can say with certainty that I have never heard a man speak about a woman the way that Trump did on that audio tape. Oddly enough, most men don’t talk about women at all in the locker room. They complain about work or school. There’s lots of talk about sports. Plenty of moaning and groaning about aches and pains associated with a just completed workout, which someone is nearly certain to proclaim to be “the hardest workout of their entire life,” but there isn’t a lot of sex talk. If men do want to say something sexual, they are likely to whisper it to each other in hushed tones.

My personal experience is that the vast majority of men don’t talk that way in the locker room.

Trump’s locker room excuse makes all men sound like him, and what Trump sounds like is a threat to the physical, psychological, emotional, and professional well-being of women.

There is implicit sexism all though American culture that is absorbed by men and boys every single day. Male privilege is real, and most men exert it in big and small ways without realizing it on a daily basis. Even well-meaning men can and do behave in sexist ways.

Donald Trump does not mean well.

He is a predator who views women as sub-human objects for his own amusement. It wasn’t only Trump’s words that were appalling on the tape, but more importantly, it was the actions that he was bragging about. Donald Trump thinks that because he is a man he is entitled to sexually assault women.

Trump’s behavior does not represent all men. Donald Trump doesn’t speak for men. There is no evidence that “Bill Clinton did it too” as Trump claims, and even if anyone else did, that doesn’t make it right or acceptable.

Men must understand that Donald Trump is claiming to speak for you. Trump is making his behavior all of ours.

Donald Trump doesn’t speak for me. Men can’t stay silent. Silence is acceptance of Trump’s actions and justification. Male silence is what encourages and advances violence against women and rape culture.

It isn’t enough to cast your vote against Donald Trump on November 8. Trump’s behavior is about more than politics. Men must stand up against the sexism and culture that Trump is trying to mainstream.

Donald Trump is attempting to speak for you, which is why men must join women in speaking out against him.