US Presidential Candidate Donald Trump is being attacked in Western media for comments he made 11 years ago privately to a host of a television show. The comments were picked up by a hot mic, and have recently been released by The Washington Post. His comments were controversial as it demeaned women, and was very masochistic.
It could be compared to Philippine President Rody Duterte’s comments about an Australian missionary to Davao who was gang raped at a prison. President Duterte, during the presidential campaign, commented that he, as the Mayor, should have gotten first dibs on the missionary. It was controversial as well, as it demeaned women.
That comment of now President Duterte was also at the height of the campaign, and was lambasted in media. People spoke up against it – politicians, celebrities, etc – but it did not dent his campaign at all. In fact, it solidified his supporters and brought him to a resounding victory with 16 million votes.
Why? Because people knew he was like that. His campaign showed him regularly cursing. He was controversial in his views (“my God, I hate drugs”). He was not beholden to traditional politics (he didn’t want to run, and practically ran as an independent). He trumpeted change, and a different kid of government that Filipinos are used to, and it worked.
So as with Trump. People know he is like that with his history and celebrity-ism. Comments like that from him are nothing new. He also has controversial views (building a wall, for one). He is also not beholden to traditional politics (not even his own Republican party). He is trumpeting change, and a different government that Americans are used to, and it might just work.
Filipinos, and Americans, are tired of the same old politics. And seeing nothing change. That’s what brought President Duterte to power. People want change, and are willing to try someone so unconventional and un-political, to make that change happen. That is what Americans see in Donald Trump. Someone so unconventional, and un-political might actually be the kick in the pants that US politics needs. And this controversy won’t affect his popularity at all.
In fact, it will solidify people and they will rally behind him. Comments made 11 years ago won’t hurt his campaign. Even President Duterte refused to apologize for those similar comments, and look where it got him.
America, you have just been Duterte-fied. God bless us all.