Donald Trump Is Guilty Of Sexual Abuse. When Did This Become Normal?

The news cycle can feel like a relentless stab in the gut for women and victims. Cases of sexual abuse, male violence, and mainstream misogyny are constant, and very rarely does there seem to be any consequences for the perpetrators. Why has it been allowed to become commonplace for men in positions of power to be sex abusers? Why are we, collectively, not more incensed?

On Tuesday 9th May, a New York jury found Donald Trump guilty of sexually abusing the advice columnist E Jean Carroll in a New York department store changing room 27 years ago. Despite decades of allegations against Trump, this is the first time the former US president has been legally branded as a sexual predator. However, because this is a civil case, he will only face a financial consequence, to the sum of $5 million.

Carroll sued the former president for raping her and then “destroying” her reputation when he accused her of lying about the encounter, claiming that she wasn’t “my type”.

Carroll said she will “always regret” going into the dressing room with Trump. After the verdict, she said “I filed this lawsuit against Donald Trump to clear my name and to get my life back. Today, the world finally knows the truth. This victory is not just for me but for every woman who has suffered because she was not believed.”

Following the verdict, Trump used his Truth Social platform to say: “I have absolutely no idea who this woman is. The verdict is a disgrace – a continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time.”

Carroll is not the only woman to accuse Trump of sexual misconduct. At least 26 women have credibly accused Donald Trump of sexual assault, non-consensual touching and kissing. The alleged incidents stretched as far back as the 1970s, with accusations that Trump reached up their skirts, touched, or kissed them without their consent.

Just over a month ago, Trump became the first current or former US president to ever be arrested and charged with a crime (for falsifying business records). And yet, his 2024 bid to becoming president of the US, again, may hardly be affected. Because Carroll’s case was a civil trial, he is still allowed to run, because there are currently no restrictions in the US Constitution preventing anyone indicted or convicted of a crime from running for presidency. In April, two-thirds of Republican primary voters said they will stand behind Trump and dismissed concerns about his electability, despite his recent criminal arrest and other legal investigations into his past conduct, a new national NBC News poll finds.

So, Trump is now officially a sex abuser. But everyone has known this, his supporters and voters have known this. The secret video of him from 2005 that went viral was proof enough, when he was recorded saying: “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.” Then there was the leaked recording from 1992, in which Trump said (about a 10-year-old girl): “I am going to be dating her in 10 years. Can you believe it?” There are dozens more examples of his misogyny and disregards for women.