Trump just suggested that protesting sexual assault survivors were 'paid professionals' and people are disgusted

Louis Staples
Friday 05 October 2018 13:45
news

Following the dramatic testimonies of Dr Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh before the US Senate last week, protests have continued across America.

After an FBI probe into Ford's allegations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a party 30 years ago reportedly found "no corroboration" for her claims, a vote is expected shortly to confirm Kavanaugh as a judge for life in the highest court in America.

As protests rage on, Trump, as he so often does, has managed to make an already contentious situation even worse. How? With a tweet, of course.

After footage of Trump appearing to mock Dr Ford at a campaign rally was widely condemned by those on all sides of the political aisle, Trump has taken things one step further.

In a tweet, Trump accused protesters of being "rude" and labelled them as "paid professionals".

Trump claimed that billionaire businessman George Soros, among others, is funding "professionally identical signs" for protestors to use. Soros, a Jew, is a figure frequently targeted by far-right politicians, activists and conspiracy theorists across the world. Most recently, Vladimir Putin's reference to Soros was branded as a "dog whistle to far-right anti-Semites" by US-based news platform VOX.

Insinuating that protestors are "paid" or "actors" is a tactic frequently used by Trump supporters. Right-wing commentator Ann Coulter alleged that crying children who appeared to be separated from their parents at the US border were "child actors" who were reading from scripts. Similarly, survivors of mass shootings in schools have also been accused, without evidence, of being actors.

Trump's reference to "elevator screamers" is likely targeted at two sexual assault survivors who confronted senator Jeff Flake as he used an elevator last week, pleading with him to abandon his support for Kavanaugh. After footage went viral, the women were widely credited with persuading Flake to force an FBI probe into the allegations, which his republican colleagues opposed. Trump rounded off this bizarre, conspiracy theory-inspired tweet with the hashtag #Troublemakers.

Inevitably, given the president's serious insinuation that sexual assault survivors are paid protestors, Twitter quickly erupted with criticism. Many expressed disgust at his remarks.

More: Sexual assault survivor confronts pro-Kavanaugh Republican senator: 'You're telling all women in America they don't matter'

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