The second Presidential Debate solidified my impression of Donald Trump as a misogynist representing the worst of patriarchy, which has been the dominant social system for the last 5,000 years.
In a patriarchal system, men are in charge, controlling leadership in politics, social privilege, family, and property, including total power over women and children. The literal meaning of patriarchy is "the rule of the father." We are just starting to climb out of this imbalance of power. Birth control, access to abortions, the right to vote, feminists, and a changing social climate have empowered women to stand up to abusive partners and energized them to run for office so they could help to change the moral and legal ramifications of this ancient system. Hillary has been trying to do that for decades; her record of public service clearly shows her hard work for the rights of women and children, famously saying as First Lady in Beijing that "women's rights are human rights."
Trump wants to be the ultimate patriarch, the one holding all the power. Hillary really irritates him. A woman shouldn't know more than he does about policy, about government, about the world, about anything. In patriarchy, women don't hold power. They are worth less than men, hence, their lower pay rates. They are more likely to be abused. They should stay home and raise the kids. They should be beautiful and sexy (Trump especially likes beautiful women and denigrates those who are fat or "ugly"). In patriarchy, women's sexuality is there for the taking. This is the personal world Trump lives in and the world he wants for us. This is, in his opinion, what would make America "great" again.
In the second debate, Donald Trump stood menacingly behind Hillary Clinton, trying to overshadow her physically when he was not lashing out at her verbally. His disrespect for her was obvious, as he habitually referred to Clinton as "her" and "she" rather than addressing her by name. He piles misogyny on top of patriarchy. Misogyny is outright contempt for women. Misogyny grabs a woman's pussy whether she wants it grabbed or not. Misogyny hates having to deal with female moderators in a debate. Misogyny is the "good old boys" network, the "boys will be boys" excuse for bad behavior, the foul language of the "locker room." Misogyny intends to throw Hillary in jail, even after she has been exonerated by the FBI and a passel of special prosecutors, and throw away the key.
Nations other than the U.S. have had women presidents or prime ministers as elected or appointed heads of state, including our neighbors to the north and south.
When you look at how far behind other countries the U.S. is in education and health care, you can begin to understand why a woman president will make a difference. While Trump made lewd sexual comments about his own daughter, Hillary worked across the aisle to pass a program that covered 8 million children with health care. As soon as she got into the Senate, she helped write laws to make education better and to protect children's health. As Secretary of State, Hillary met with women in countries around the world and led the U.N. Security Council resolution to combat sexual violence in conflict zones and to advance the rights of the LGBT community. In the meantime, Trump tried to have sex with a married woman while his most current wife was pregnant.
And this patriarchal and misogynist man wants to be president? As decent men and women, we can't let that happen. As citizens of a world that is just starting to wake up to how women are sexually assaulted and abused around the globe, we can't let that happen.
If you are in any way undecided about who to vote for less than a month from now, please don't vote for this dangerous narcissist, with his grandiose perception of himself as being the one person who can fix everything that's wrong. Don't give this pompous and arrogant exploiter of others, the one who cares only about himself and his entitlement and personal gain, a bully pulpit from which to bully the world. He's hot-tempered and dangerous, and imagining him with his finger on the nuclear button should scare the bejeezus out of us all.
This election is crucial. It's time to stand up and be counted for decency, compassion for others, and your ultimate health and welfare. Get out there. Talk to your family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. Don't hide behind complacency or "I don't do politics." Get fired up about electing Hillary as if your life depends on it. It does.