What Trump’s Victory Means to Women: Unparalleled Danger and the Need for Massive Outpourings of Resistance
by Sunsara Taylor
November 15, 2016 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us
It is impossible to overstate the danger of the Trump/Pence victory to women. I am not talking about an undesirable but incremental “rollback of women’s rights.” I’m talking about a brutal beatdown intended to leave women bloodied and bruised, nursing their wounds in humiliated silence while cradling the rape babies they’ll be forced to bear. No, I am not fucking exaggerating.
Trump is a walking, talking embodiment of rape culture, of vindictive revenge, of cruel degradation and violence against women. He brags about sexually assaulting women to other powerful men for laughs. He mocks and lashes out at the women who complain—fires them, smears them, sues them, tries to poison their relationships, works hard to hurt them in any way he can. He relies on—and whips up to new levels—the sense of entitlement that men have for centuries been socialized to have over women’s bodies, lives, psyches, and aspirations. He thinks it is up to him whether women smile, how they walk, whether they eat, whether they speak. He is unapologetically modeling this behavior and fighting for men everywhere to forcefully reclaim this brutal domination. And he will soon wield the most powerful state apparatus in the history of humanity. Already, women and girls as young as elementary school across the country have reported being grabbed by the genitals by strangers and classmates in the name of the new president.
Trump has married this program with that of his vicious and cruel running mate. Mike Pence hails from the most extreme wing of the Christian fascists—what could accurately be called the American Taliban. No birth control. No sex-ed. No sex before marriage. Forget about abortion—even if the woman is raped or in danger of dying. Pence fought to protect “the right” of businesses to practice bigotry against same-sex couples, to prohibit trans people from using bathrooms that fit their gender identity, and to back anti-scientific and cruel programs to torture gay kids into being straight.
As outrageous as all of this is, it is not even a little bit far-fetched that all this could soon become the law of the land. If Roe v. Wade were overturned, a likelihood as Trump fills Supreme Court vacancies, 19 states would automatically activate laws already on the books that would effectively end abortion. This comes on top of hundreds of restrictions and thousands of acts of terror, clinic-bombings, assassinations, acts of arson, death threats, clinic invasions, stalking of clinic staff, and much, much more. Whether enacted through extra-legal terror or the even more far-reaching state-backed restrictions, denying women the right to birth control and abortion, forcing women to bear children against their will at risk of death and shame and prison time, amounts to nothing short of the open enslavement of women. It strips women of their humanity, slams them backwards, reduces them to possessions of men and breeders of children.
And here is where the cold moral rectitude and theocratic shaming of Mike Pence comes together with the crude, womanizing predations of Donald Trump: both reduce women to objects to be owned, used, and controlled by men. There is no fundamental difference between reducing women to sex objects to be degraded and humiliated by men asserting their domination and reducing women to breeders of children who are punished for having sex and forced to bear children against their will. This is female enslavement.
THIS MUST BE STOPPED! Women are NOT bitches, ho’s, punching bags, sex objects, or breeding machines!
Women are FULL HUMAN BEINGS—capable of participating fully and equally in every realm of human society together with men. We must fight for a world in which women are treated as such with every fiber of our being.
But in waging this fight, it is not enough to merely try to stave off the monstrous things that Trump unleashes against women—as well as immigrants, Black people, the environment, Muslims, and people around the world. Fighting to keep things the way they are now is not only impossible, it would mean preserving the widespread culture of rape and degradation, white supremacy and xenophobia, American chauvinism, and the anti-science that has given rise to Donald Trump.
The status quo is intolerable. It is convicted rapists getting only a slap on the wrist. It is Christian fascists terrorizing women outside abortion clinics in all fifty states. It is elite universities filled with a culture of predation and dehumanization of women.1 All this rests on global networks of exploitation and plunder, in which women everywhere are hit doubly hard. Women are locked into sweatshops in China and Bangladesh and beyond, slaving to make cheap U.S. consumer goods. Women are kidnapped and forced into sexual slavery in the brothels that surround and “service” every U.S. military base in the world. Women are imprisoned under veils, stoned to death, or burned with acid, by the rising forces of Islamic fundamentalism which the U.S. has massively strengthened through its invasions, occupations, torture, and drone strikes.
None of this should be preserved. All of it must be ended. We must fight for a world in which every chain that binds women—and other oppressed people—is shattered forever. A world free of exploitation and oppression in every form. This is possible, but only through an actual revolution. Bob Avakian, through decades of work and struggle, has not only forged the understanding of the need, basis, and scientific approach to making this necessary revolution, he has deepened and fought for an approach that grasps the centrality of the fight to break ALL the chains that bind women to this fight to emancipate all of humanity. Never has it been more urgent to dig into and take up the leadership he is providing. (See a list of recommended readings at the end of this article.)
It is very good that people—including waves of furious women—have poured into the streets against Trump. This must continue and it must become even more widespread, even more determined, and even more radical. Every attack he unleashes—whether through the tremendous power of the state or through his fascist “grassroots” bigots—must be boldly confronted and uncompromisingly resisted. As we fight, we must bring alive the culture of mutual respect and equality between women and men, between people of different genders and sexual orientations, that we are fighting for. We must value and treasure the lives of people around the world as much as our own. We must fiercely oppose white supremacy and the terror that is being unleashed against Black people, Latinos, Muslims, immigrants, and Native peoples. And we must lift our sights to—and fight to make real—the kind of real revolution that can build a future where there is no longer the basis for anything like this to ever happen again.
BREAK THE CHAINS!
UNLEASH THE FURY OF WOMEN AS A MIGHTY FORCE FOR REVOLUTION!
Suggested readings from Bob Avakian:
* Note the recent exposures—and subsequent suspensions—of the men’s soccer team at Harvard and the men’s wrestling team at Columbia, two of the most prestigious universities in the U.S., for rampant and ongoing cultures of gross objectification and sexual degradation of women. At Harvard, this included systematically ranking the members of the female soccer team in terms of their supposed physical attractiveness, and each was assigned a physical sexual act or position. At Columbia, this included not only sexually degrading women but also vulgar racism as well. [back]
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