I’m trying to understand, with all that has happened in this election, why so many people, especially women, still support Trump. Maybe it’s because no matter who is wearing your team’s T-shirt, that’s who you are going to stay loyal to. Trump has disparaged everyone who is not a white Christian. A few days ago, it became painfully obvious that all women were, in Trump’s mind, objects. Objects that he can demean and degrade without any consequence. The victims that are coming forward are the ones being judged and refuted. All of this has brought up too many painful memories for me.
I consider myself one of the lucky ones. I wasn’t raped, just an attempted rape. I’ve met many women who have had similar experiences and it’s almost a given; you’re a woman and it’s going to happen to you on some level. I’ve been groped on a crowded subway: I’ve been pushed up against a wall by a boss who thought he had the right to do so; I’ve been followed by men; and I’ve been propositioned while standing on the sidewalk trying to cross the street. Because of my experiences, I am constantly aware of my surroundings. I walk with strength and confidence hoping that will be enough to keep me safe. I see the men who do this for the cowards that they are. They are the ones who are terrified of women. They are scared of being rejected by us, so they use their physical strength to impose their will on us. The pitiful excuse of the man who tried to rape me fits this description perfectly.
I was 20 years old working on my bachelor’s degree at the University of Miami where I had an internship at the cable station. The director and head of the station invited me to go to a networking event. This was the man who was in charge of my internship and my grade. After the event, he drove me to my car that was still in the cable station parking lot. I unlocked my door and got in. He opened the passenger side and jumped into the seat. He grabbed my car keys out of my hand and tried kissing me. I pushed him away but he kept coming at me. I said, “What is wrong with you? You’re married. You have to stop.” He responded, “Look, we both have been drinking. What’s the big deal?” I shouted,”I’m not drunk, and I certainly am not going to have sex with you. Get out of my car!” He looked at me and said, “I can fail you and ruin your grade point average”. He started to grab at me again. Something in me just snapped and I become so angry. I started yelling, “Let me tell you something you asshole: I will rip off your fucking face if you don’t get off me! I will tear your throat out and let everyone know what you tried to do!” ( I may look small and helpless, but I’m quite scary when I get mad) He looked at me and said, “Go ahead. Tell anyone you like. They are not going to believe you.” Thankfully, he got out of the car.
The next day I went to my professor who set up the internship and informed him of what happened. His response was, “Is this the only way you can get hired for the job?” I looked at him dumbfounded and said,”I’m not going to work for him.” My professor said, “Well, it doesn’t really matter then.”
When I had to get my grade for this internship, the director had given my paperwork to his assistant, a woman whom I did very little work for. She decided to give me a C. I asked her what she was basing this grade on and she responded that she felt that was what I deserved. I took the paperwork and went to the director. I handed him the sheet and he just laughed, “Oh, you don’t like the grade she gave you?” I said, “She knows very little about the work I did here. I worked for you. Change this to an A. Now!” He changed my grade to an A.
I bring this last part up for a reason. Working with other women was also an obstacle. Instead of banding together and helping each other, I found many women siding with men, hoping that will give them the respect they want. All it did was help this type of behavior become acceptable.
That’s the only way I can reason why so many women will still support Trump. You can’t tell me it’s because you like his ideas or that Hillary is crooked. The facts are that Hillary Clinton has been investigated for Benghazi, her emails, her charitable foundation and still comes out innocent. Trump has done very little for this country. As a matter of fact he has done a lot to hurt people financially and emotionally. There is nothing presidential about him. He’s not smart; he’s a failed businessman and a sexual predator. It’s time that all women come together and send a loud message to all the cowards in this country that we will not stand for this type of behavior anymore.
Celeste DeCamps has a B.A. in Communications from the University of Miami. She worked in radio and television, was a professional belly dancer, drummer, percussionist, nightclub owner, and a sales rep for Southern Wine and Spirits for 12 years. Throughout her different career moves, speaking to and teaching women how to be more confident is Celeste's most fulfilling job.