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  • February 13th, 2018

PUT ON YOUR OL’ GRAY WIFE-BEATER

By Joel M. Vance

I have a suggestion for Donald J Trump, the Parademaster in Chief of the United States. When he orders the military might of the United States to parade past his personal reviewing stand, no doubt at Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue, he can by presidential decree,(something that he favors over the rule of law) order the massed troops to wear specially designed uniforms for the occasion.
They will, of course, have been designed by Ivanka, Trump’s daughter, who continues to profit lavishly from her sprawling fashion empire and her associated close contact with the presidential father. Souvenir copies of the new uniforms after the parade will be on sale for ridiculously inflated prices through her many outlets. This uniform will consist of golfing shorts (it promising to be a very hot day in Washington DC) and a top commonly called a “wife beater.” This is a T-shirt with no sleeves.
Given the caveman lifestyle of Trump and his various aides and supporters in recent weeks, a wife beater T-shirt seems to be appropriate as the uniform of the day.
For those female members of the military the T-shirt of course will be wet to appease the drooling tastes of the Trump entourage, those who only see females of the species as targets, whether of physical, emotional, or some other deviant form of abuse. Higher ranking officers, especially those accused of insensitive remarks toward or treatment of female military personnel would be required to wear tutus. I look forward to seeing Trump’s Chief of Staff John Kelly wearing a tutu, even though he’s retired from the active military, although not from making insensitive gender remarks and if he doesn’t get fired in the next few days.
The wife beaters could be decorated in front with a picture of Trump and the slogan “Make America White Again” prominent above it. The back could be adorned with the logos of organizations that persist in supporting Trump, despite the mountain of evidence that he is a fraud— think Breitbart, Fox News, and others of the extreme right (and don’t forget the Ku Klux Klan).
That the wife beater should be the official new uniform of the military should come as no surprise to anyone who has read a news story in the last five minutes. Anymore, the news is not who has been accused of spousal or other abuse of women, but who hasn’t. But in Trump world, which more and more resembles Oz or some other fantasy world, the concept of “innocent until proven guilty” now translates “to innocent because Donald J Trump says so.” Remember, the Defender in Chief said that Roy Moore, the Alabama deviant and ardent Trump supporter, claimed he was innocent even though there was an avalanche of evidence to the contrary. Thus we should have ignored the evidence, and accepted Trump’s claim that Moore was a good candidate for the United States Senate
And in case you haven’t been watching the news in the last five minutes, the saga of Trump and his now disgraced top aide Rob Porter is symptomatic of the whole Trump versus woman saga. Porter, in case you didn’t know, has been accused by two former wives of spousal abuse and also by a former girlfriend. One former wife exhibited a black eye she says Porter gave her, and the other once obtained a police restraining order against him.

Trump’s response to these allegations which everyone in his or her right mind believes, was this tweet: “people’s lives are being shattered and destroyed by a mere allegation. Some are true and some are false. Some are old and some are new. There is no recovery for someone falsely accused— life and career are gone. Is there no such thing any longer as due process?” In this as in other cases where men have been accused by women of abuse, Trump took the side of the man against the woman, trying to throw doubt upon the accusations and minimizing if not outright denying their accuracy. Of course, considering he has been accused by at least 19 women of unwanted sexual advances, and paid a porn star $130,000 to keep her mouth shut about their mutual diddling, whether it was consensual or not, one has to, well, consider the source.
And he and his Chief of Staff, John Kelly, with or without a tutu, knew about the allegations against Porter months before they surfaced, thanks to investigative reporting, and the First Amendment, which still exists despite all the administration efforts to eliminate it. They did nothing. Even after Porter resigned, both Trump and Kelly were quick to praise their disgraced former colleague for what a wonderful job he had done, and how hard he had worked, somehow failing to mention the reason he no longer was the president’s right-hand man was that he was a spousal abuser. They conveniently did not mention the spouses involved. It’s kind of like praising an armed robber as a good family man, simply trying to provide for his children, without mentioning the victim he shot six times.
It is inconceivable to me that any woman in the United States of America would have voted for this misogynistic jerk, and would continue to support him, given the mounting avalanche of information about his inability not only to serve in the office of president, but to function as a decent human being. Don’t these women remember Trump’s famous caught-on-tape comments before the election about his ability to do anything he wanted with a woman up to and including grabbing her by the crotch? I suspect even Tammy Wynette would have trouble standing by her man, if the man were Donald J Trump.
Even some of the most prominent women still supporting Trump seem to be terminally confused. Kellyanne Conway, the Wicked Witch of the West Wing, issued a strongly worded statement in support of Porter after the allegations broke in the news media, but then a few days later told Jake Tapper on CNN “I have no reason not to believe the women.” Neither does anyone else, not tied to Trump’s coattails. Since, she has been silent, perhaps reconsidering her betrayal of abused women everywhere.
In another incredible tangle of alliances right out of Days of Our Lives, Kelly’s defense of Rob Porter after the accusations surfaced, apparently was at least partly crafted by another female Trump supporter and aide Hope Hicks, who is the current girlfriend of Rob Porter.
One wonders where Melania, Donald Trump’s third wife, stands amid all this hullabaloo. She has been conspicuously silent and the most notable female in the Trump orbit has been his daughter, about whom he once notoriously said he would date if she weren’t his daughter, and asked the reigning Miss America if she didn’t think Ivanka was “hot.” While it may or might not be true, it certainly in the realm of possibility given the overall web of spousal and sexual abuse surrounding Donald Trump, his first wife, Ivana, claimed in a book that her husband had raped her. She later backtracked some and now cannot amplify correct or otherwise shed light on what she originally said because she signed a nondisclosure agreement. She is Ivanka’s mother.
I suspect Trump was busy watching Fox news and missed the whole thing but I watched with awe, joy and pride as 17-year-old Chloe Kim won an Olympic gold medal in the women’s snowboard half pipe, and, wrapped in the American flag hugged her parents and teammates. It brought a tear to my eye. Born in the United States, Chloe Kim is a citizen and I immediately checked her family to make sure that her parents, immigrants from South Korea (hear that, Trump, you arrogant xenophobic blockhead) are, indeed, citizens of the United States who shouldn’t have to fear that agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement will swoop down like the American Gestapo they rapidly are becoming and deport them back to Korea.
Chloe Kim’s father, a retired engineer, is quoted as saying, “it’s just great because it’s kind of the American dream, American dream come true. It’s a land of opportunity. Why not?”
David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker magazine, recently wrote something worth quoting, and I hope I’m not abusing the idea of fair use by repeating him. It so perfectly sums up the situation with Trump and women that, if I am overusing Mr. Remnick’s words, I apologize. Here’s what Remnick said: “He “(Trump) diverts attention from his own encyclopedic record of miserable behavior toward women by casting doubt on the accusers. This is a neat trick, yet hardly original. It has come to the point where even Trump’s closest aides know that a reckoning is coming. It’s not going to be okay.”
Chloe Kim isn’t old enough to vote yet, but she will be, and the future of the nation is in the grit and intelligence of her and women like her who refuse to put up with bloated and predatory old white men like Donald Trump. As David Remnick says, “a reckoning is coming”. Meanwhile, the sight of petite Chloe Kim wrapped in the American flag waiting to have a gold medal draped around her neck will continue to warm my heart for a long time to come.

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