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10 Things I Learned While Watching the US Presidential Debate as a Brit

10 Things I Learned While Watching the US Presidential Debate as a Brit

1. Not fully comprehending sexual assault is a universal problem. 
Trump’s deeply offensive comments that surfaced earlier this week, where he mentions that women should be grabbed by their p*ssies, have caused the uproar many of his previous comments about ethnic minorities, Islam, war veterans etc. should have had.
His sorry-not-sorry statement afterwards demonstrates how sexual assault is still not taken as seriously as it deserves.
Here in the UK ,we have similar issues. The Thames Valley police released a video trying to explain the issue of consent by using the analogy of offering someone a cup of tea. The video, although quintessentially British, has been surprisingly well received in the US.  However, the fact that a video like this needs to be made just highlights how much of a problem it remains to be. Trump’s explanation that his “hot mic” comments were “locker room talk” is even more worrying, as it suggests that this kind of mentality is acceptable if not widely shared.
 
2. Bullies exist outside of the playground. 
Trump’s remarks that he would jail Hillary if he became President, although flippant, reveal an even darker side to this reprehensible man.
It’s clear that he believes becoming President gives him a pass to do anything he wants, regardless of who suffers. So far, Trump has managed to discriminate against Mexicans, Muslims, the differently abled, and now half the entire human race.
It does beg the question that, apart from some poor inbred backwater swamp-dwellers who share a few brain cells between them, who is actually voting for this guy? But, then again, I wondered the same about Nigel Farage — an equally hateful, bigoted political figure from the UK.
Hillary called out his bullying nature a few times, listing his attack on the family of Humayan Khan, a US soldier killed in the Iraq war, his “birther” attack on Barack Obama, his attack on a disabled reporter and his attack on an American federal judge of Mexican descent. She said Trump “owes the country an apology.”
 
3.  When in doubt, just blame ISIS.
Trump’s reply to questioning about his lewd comments by mentioning ISIS, and how he will “knock the hell out of them” seems more appropriate for the SNL version of the debate rather than the actual thing.
This not-so-subtle deflecting tactic is not only insulting to anyone with an ounce of intelligence watching the debate, but, yet again, legitimises the idea that ISIS is the source of evil that unites us all in hatred. This may have been true before Trump’s run for President but, honestly, it’s a close call now.

4. Muslims are here, engaging, and will not tolerate Trump’s nonsense.

It seems the media, most of the time, views the “homogeneous” mass of Muslims the same way an abusive husband sees his wife. He expects her to take a beating, and shut up about it. Moustafa Bayoumi tweeted during the debate in response to Trump’s solution for Islamophobia.  The Presidential candidate replied that Muslims need to report suspicious activity from other Muslims. Moustafa wrote: “I’m a Muslim and I’d like to report a crazy man threatening a woman on a stage in Missouri,” and it was the most re-tweeted tweet during the debate.  Moustafa’s witty response demonstrates how Muslims are not afraid to use our voice eloquently to shut haters down — no matter how orange they are!
 

5. Trump is quite clearly a sociopath with a phenomenal amount of hubris.

I remember seeing an interview with Harry Potter star, Daniel Radcliffe, who shared an anecdote about meeting Trump. He said he was 11 or 12 and was about to go on the Today show for the first time. He met Trump while waiting to go on who asked how he was. Daniel said: ‘I’m a little nervous as I’ve never done an interview before. I don’t know what I’ll talk about.” Trump replied saying, “You just tell them you met Mr Trump.”
Personally, I think this perfectly exemplifies this man’s skyrocketing narcissism, and running for POTUS can have only fanned those crazy flames. His constant whining about not having enough time, and aggressive debating with the moderators further demonstrates how his entire focus is on himself.

6. You can bring up your opponent’s husband’s past but ignore your own.

I never liked Bill Clinton. I always found it odd that people whimsically tossed aside his sexual deviations because he had a nice smile. But that is not Hillary’s bidness.
There is something crass about using her husband’s poor life choices against, her yet ignoring your own. 62% of Americans agree that this tactic was unacceptable, particularly when Trump was so deflective when answering for his own past.
 

7. I know this may be controversial, but I’m British, so I can say it… Both candidates are awful.

I’ll agree Hillary is far more polished, and ticks many of the presidential candidate boxes — but she’s also a horrible person.
We can’t even claim her as promoting gender equality or women’s rights, and it was no coincidence that Trump made sure her defence of an accused rapist earlier in her career was not forgotten.
 

8. Don’t be a good sport.

See Also

The lack of handshake before the debate was very unsports(wo)manlike and, again, seems to define the poor choice of candidates America is currently faced with.
Michael Moore claims that Trump is a product of hundreds of other Trumps already present in the US government. The “no handshake” nasty and personal energy witnessed at this debate seems to signify the direction US politics appears to be taking.
Dare I say that even Frank Underwood is looking like a better alternative?

9. Kenneth Bone is a leg-end!

That is all.

10. There was no clear winner.

The content was Mean Girl-worthy nasty, and overall quite tawdry. Hillary may have come across a little better, but if I was a US citizen, I’d be a very conflicted voter at this point.

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