When I first saw the infamous Donald Trump Access Hollywood video a few weeks ago, in which he bragged to Billy Bush about sexually assaulting women, I instantly felt sick, enraged, and dizzyingly triggered. Little did I know that women all over the country – and perhaps the world – felt exactly as I did.
When I was 12 I asked my mom to take me to church so I could learn about religion. I grew up in a secular Christian household. My religious upbringing was full of questions without answers and a sense that there must be something more out there. Though we celebrated secular Christmases and Easters at home, I didn’t belong to any faith and was starting to feel restless by that age, as though I had no path to follow.
In the innocent days of 2011, a striking young couple observed Sukkot with their new baby in tow. The man pushed a stroller down the street, one hand also holding a lulav, the other being sweetly held by that of his glamorous yet modestly dressed wife. The scene made the Daily Mail Online because of who the people were: investor Jared Kushner and “first time mother” Ivanka Trump. The Mail interpreted the lulav to be “some flowers,” suggesting they were “perhaps a gift for his wife.” Astute Jewishly-informed commenters corrected.
The hypothetical of the moment goes as follows: what if Hillary Clinton were the candidate grabbing opposite-sex colleagues without their consent? What if men, rather than women, were being objectified and drooled over during the presidential election?