During recent months the social media and several newspapers have resuscitated a group of nude photos of the future First Lady of the United States, Melanie Trump. The images are fundamentally from an article published by the British magazine GQ in January 2016, when Melanie Trump – still Melanie Knauss – was working as a model.
A significant group of anti-Trump activists, of systematic criticizers of the New York magnate’s misogyny, have declared these photos and the public nudity of Melanie a symbol of shame. To make sure that this is so, they have placed them side-by-side with the anti-Trump arguments as the scandal of the shameful – they surely are – sexist statements made in 2005 by Donald and published a month before the U.S. elections by the Washington Post.
The gesture is deplorable. Not because it deliberately disrupts and manipulates the times, but rather because it again brings to the fore the role set aside for women – in this case the First Lady – while placing their right to carry out any type of work-related activity in the background – in this case that of model, a job as professional as any other – and being evaluated in equal conditions for this. And what is worse, it again turns into vandalism women’s nudity, a natural state that has already caused them so much violence, abuses and death.
Those who have participated in this sad maneuver are again taking to the battlefield the body of the woman. And with it, that of all women. They use it as a weapon and a projectile to throw misogynous mud at the misogyny they say they combat. They forget that challenging the dragon does not make them a hero, less so if on the way they go at it they are puffing the same fire.
Diabolizing Melanie’s naked body not only banalizes the struggle against a great deal of what Trump represents. Using it against the magnate strengthens the message that to reach the Man little does it matter sacrificing the name or the body of a woman. They can be, although the polls and timeline of the very media hide it, small but equally deplorable versions of Donald Trump.
I ask myself how many of those who today go around ridiculing Melanie, of those who have made of her nude body an anti-Trump grenade would have demonized the potential “First Gentleman” Bill Clinton. I would dare to affirm that there would be some, but few, very few. And in any case they would have done so in a humorous way and not in a tone of scandal. In short, the public nudity of Melanie is intolerable. Clinton’s correct necktie sodomizing the student, the natural order. Small Trumpisms, without towers, press or political error that we allow ourselves every day.
By virtue of Decree 2017 / 97 of the Council of Ministers thousands of Cubans from the central provinces and, above all the Cuban eastern ones have in Havana the status of illegal and the social stigma of Palestinians. They are patrolled, harassed, do not officially exist for the educational system or the labor institutions. Any Tuesday morning they can be detained. Any Friday morning they can be sent back to their province of origin. And a Havanan, perhaps a state authority, will say “back to your country.”
Certain walls are made of concrete; others of decrees, of discrimination.
III. Hate speech
In nature there are species without great evolutionary qualities except for an impressive capacity to reproduce. The same goes for hate. Its spread does not demand too many requisites. A quota of individual or group failures and an enemy to blame is enough for it. They can be the homosexuals for rupturing the traditional order of the family and of love. The blacks for having sat in the front of the bus, as I read a few days ago, “for the crime of carrying their skin.” The globalization for conspiring against tribal primitiveness. The Muslims and their tendency to explode. The communists for the red. The capitalists for the green. The centrists for believing in the blue. The priority does not lie in who or why, but rather simply on hate.
I have read netsurfers before and after the U.S. elections that only needed the hepatic tone of their skin and a hairpiece over their brow to write during debates on the social media: “I could go out shooting people on Fifth Avenues and even so I wouldn’t lose a single Like here.” Left-wing netsurfers. Right-wing netsurfers. It doesn’t matter. Hate is ambidextrous. Hate, sectarian, tribal, has become a sort of pop star that increasingly more fans seem to enjoy.
Some weeks ago I apologized on a Facebook wall because of the wrong inference motivated by the photo that heads this text. Faced by the public recognition of my error I immediately received some congratulations from netsurfers who said they awarded my gentlemanliness. Actually, the award was the anachronism into which apologizing and doing so in public has become. Apologizing is an unprecedented act around these days. The hate speeches, discrimination, mockery, disrespect for the difference, even the very day.
Small arrogances that resemble Trump’s. Which Trump knew how to read, that the character that Trump created knew how to exploit. Meryl Streep was recalling this some days ago during the Golden Globes awards ceremony when she said: “There was one performance this year that stunned me. It sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good, there was nothing good about it, but it was effective and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh and show their teeth.” Or when further on she said: “Disrespect invites disrespect. Violence incites violence. When the powerful use their position to bully others, we all lose.” When we serve our wars to the powerful for them to use them we all lose.
Donald is not more the founder of his hate than the usufructuary of ours. His impact will be less to the extent that he cannot read from the dictionary with which our daily Trumpisms teach (or don’t teach) him to read and write.