SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Bill O’Reilly’s ouster from Fox News, amid revelations of a costly sexual harassment cover up, has also put President Trump in an awkward and embarrassing predicament. At the end of March, Trump declared April 2017 to be National Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Some progressive opponents accepted the gesture, hoping for an earnest commitment from the White House, even if politically motivated. Others derided the president’s sentiments as ironic and brazen, citing examples of his misogynistic exploits, including a public defense of O’Reilly. When questioned about Trump’s support of O’Reilly, Press Secretary Sean Spicer reluctantly admitted that the president’s intent with National Sexual Assault Awareness Month was to honor the “perverts, rapists and sexual predators who represent the values of America’s great leadership, and who have fueled a thriving patriarchy that created the most powerful nation in the world.”
Talking Points Memo: O’Reilly’s Sexual Assault FactorIconic Fox News personality Bill O’Reilly, host of the long-running and top-rated “The O’Reilly Factor,” has been removed by network executives who confirmed on Wednesday that the talk show pundit “will not be returning to the Fox News Channel.” O’Reilly’s departure, NPR explained, follows an exodus of advertisers who abandoned the show after learning that Fox had shelled out $13 million to settle five sexual harassment suits. Several weeks ago, a sixth victim emerged, pushing the situation to its crisis.
As CNN noted, O’Reilly’s departure would “mark a swift and stunning fall for a man who has hosted the number one program in cable news for 16 years running. But the ‘Factor’ became radioactive after the New York Times reported earlier this month that five different women who had accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment or verbal abuse had received settlements totaling $13 million.”
The scandal punched another dent in the armor of Fox News, still recovering from the sexual harassment firestorm that led to Roger Ailes’ resignation, and delivered a heavy blow to the ego of conservatives. But its implications also extended deep into the increasingly fragile Trump administration.
“I don’t think Bill did anything wrong,” President Trump told the Times in an interview earlier this month, when the allegations surfaced. “Personally, I think he shouldn’t have settled.”
Honoring America’s Sexual AssaultersFor decades, women’s rights activists have recognized April as a time to raise public awareness for victims of sexual abuse and violence. In 2009, Barack Obama became the first president to officially proclaim April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The White House, in a symbolic gesture, has renewed the proclamation each subsequent year. But as Sean Spicer explained in Wednesday’s uncomfortable presser, President Trump -- having failed to read to actual documentation -- misunderstood the intent of the holiday.
The Huffington Post reminded readers that Trump has been “publicly accused of sexual assault by more than 15 women and was caught on tape boasting he could grab women 'by the p***y' without their consent.” Huffington Post also observed that Trump’s iteration of the proclamation deleted all mentions of military sexual assault and removed all references to rape culture. But these striking omissions, Spicer said, were not oversights. President Trump’s vision of National Sexual Assault Month skews in a different direction.
Spicer, backed into a corner, admitted that President Trump believed the ceremonial month was meant to honor the “brave men of America” who “fight to restore traditional family values. Dad out hunting and gathering. Mom pumping out babies, shopping, overseeing the domestics and coordinating with nannies.”
In October, to sate Trump’s unsavory urges, Pence reportedly purchased a custom-made sex doll that replicates the physical dimensions and aesthetics of a woman. Pence defended the unorthodox decision as a way for Trump to appease his predatory tendencies without actually assaulting women or raping teenage girls.
A month later, Trump declared his resolve in “winning” the war on women.
My agenda is as pro-woman as it is pro-immigrant. To my shrill, whiny critics I say take off the dress and deal with the real issues. Stop crying a like a bunch of stupid girls, man up and grab the problem by the p***y.
If we force businesses to create equal standards, then women will have to abide by stricter attendance policies. No 12-week maternity leave, no excused absences once a month for cramps, no tolerance for behavior problems while they’re PMS-ing, and no ducking out of working lunches at the Stacked Rack Shack.
Women have superior cooking, cleaning and sewing skills. They surpass men in those industries, I think. Even Mexicans and Chinamen. Women are generally better test subjects for feminine hygiene products, too. And in my professional experience, they’re better salespeople. Now I know sales is a field dominated by men, but I’ve never seen a man close a deal as effectively as a woman. Men don’t have the physical appeal. And when push comes to shove, men aren’t good at nagging buyers into a decision.
“What the president hoped to achieve with his version of the Sexual Assault Month was recognition for the contributions of alpha males, not real rapists,” Spicer clarified. “Without Bill Cosby, so much comedy would have been absent from our lives. And like Bill O’Reilly, and like President Trump, Mr. Cosby is a victim of unfounded accusations. Settling a case is not the same as pleading guilty. But if we continue to allow legislators to punish locker room talk and a man’s self-expression -- his ability to exert his masculinity, to grow into a man in charge -- then we risk collapsing our entire social and political leadership structure. How many women heads of state can you name? Not one, I’m guessing. Because they don’t exist. And if they did, with access to militaries and nukes, one bad week of PMS could lead to a wholesale slaughter of civilians that would easily surpass the atrocities of Hitler or Assad.”
Trump Suggests Replacement for O’ReillyAlthough media watchdogs expect Tucker Carlson to assume O’Reilly’s role, President Trump said he thought Fox would be sending viewers the wrong message.
“It’s clear that Fox needs to maintain a strong, dominant news presence with ‘The Factor’ while appealing to the female demographic,” Trump said. “And reading through a list of conservatives who are also registered sex offenders would take years. My advice is to tap Miki Agrawal -- the CEO of Thinx, that company that makes period panties and underwear and crap. Strong woman. Very powerful business woman. She’s a woman. But she also understands the important policy issues my administration shares to make America great again. She, you know, denied her employees maternity leave. She flirted with the women there at the company. She groped their breasts like a man. She came onto other women sexually, which is empowering to them, it validates them as women. And she even held nude video conferences. So hot. If you’re looking for a fresh face on ‘The Factor,’ she’s it.”
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