Mindy McGillivray, one of over a dozen women who have accused Republican nominee Donald Trump of sexually assaulting her, has been forced to leave the country because she fears for her family’s safety. McGillivray told her story to the Palm Beach Post after the New York Times published the stories of Jessica Leeds and Rachel Crooks, who also provide vivid descriptions of assault by Donald Trump – descriptions that are corroborated by Trump’s own account of his behavior that was caught on a hot mic.
Since then, Donald Trump has labelled his accusers as liars and as instruments of a shadowy “Clinton machine” that is out to smear him- and his rabid fans have been quick to respond with threats. “We feel the backlash of the Trump supporters. It scares us. It intimidates us. We are in fear of our lives,” said McGillivray. “I look out the window and there are cars just driving around the house and looking, slowing down right at the house. I don’t live in a gated community. This is dangerous. There could be people out there who want to hurt us.’’
Donald Trump supporters have begun screaming “LOCK HER UP” in response to not only mentions of Clinton but mentions of Trump’s accusers at his rallies. FOX host Lou Dobbs tweeted the address and phone number of Jessica Leeds, who is accusing Trump of attempted rape on an airline. Doing so is exceptionally dangerous, because Donald Trump’s followers are some of the lowest, most hateful scum to ever tarnish American soil. Klansmen, neo-Nazis, white supremacists. The kinds of people who send rape threats to female Trump critics and their children; they send Jewish journalists gas-chamber memes and Pepes in Schutzstaffel uniforms. For the most part, they are heavily armed.
This is why so few sexual assaults are reported across the world. The numbers are likely quite higher than the one assault every 109 seconds tabulated by RAINN. Why do you think it took so long for these women to come forward in the first place?
The one woman who did, Jill Harth, was dismissed and ignored as a gold-digging liar, forced to accept a settlement from Trump in order to proceed with another lawsuit to save her business, which Trump refused to pay. It wasn’t until Trump got caught admitting to it himself did other women have an opening to speak up – and they’ve still been dragged through the ringer for it.
VOX’s Liz Plank describes it perfectly: “In the past 24 hours, we’ve witnessed a master class in the way powerful men get away with assault, harassment, and abuse of their power…Trump proved exactly why women often avoid reporting assault: the very present fear that they will be publicly shamed — especially when it comes to Trump accusers — for doing so.”
Capitalism and the patriarchy have taught our society to believe that a woman accusing a man of sexual assault is out to get something. It’s time for us to change the narrative, and to put a stop to the appalling ocean of abuse being hurled by the right-wing when high-profile rape cases occur.
“She’s making it up, that she wanted it and changed her mind, you know women are so crazy” scream conservatives on FOX News. “Why didn’t you speak up earlier? Why were you wearing suggestive clothing? How much were you drinking? What are you out to get? Liar, slut, bitch, whore. It’s your fault. Be grateful you’re attractive enough to warrant men’s creeping hands. ” screams deplorables on Twitter. “Tell us your painful story, the dirty details, in a public setting, again and again, while strange men pour over every minute detail” demands the media.
“This isn’t for money. This isn’t for fame. This is to be honest with her” said McGillivray, indicating her 15-year-old daughter, Corina. Yes, it’s about time we were all honest with each other about the truth of sexual assault in America – and how we enable rapists and sexual predators to walk free among us while forcing the victims to suffer in silence. After the Trump story broke, author Kelly Oxford asked women to send her their assault stories. She’s received 50 a minute – over a million total – in just a few days. That is just a tiny fraction of the millions of stories out there of abuse that have gone ignored.
We hope McGillivray, and all the rest of Trump’s accusers, are able to escape the wrath of the deplorable lynch mob.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.