Thu | Sep 21, 2017

Devon Dick | Trump Tower Tumbles because of Women

Published:Thursday | October 20, 2016 | 10:00 AM

Billionaire businessman Donald Trump, Republican nominee for the United States (US) presidency, is known for the signature Trump Towers, but he and his empire are tumbling because of women.

First, Hillary Clinton, the second most unfavourable candidate in US history, has consistently led in the polls. Furthermore, her campaign is better organised and better funded. Additionally, she seems far more knowledgeable about governance and world affairs.

However, the coup de gr‚ce to his triumph was the release of the Access to Hollywood tape in which Trump bragged about trying to seduce a married woman, not waiting to kiss women, grabbing women by their genitals and being able to get away with it because he is a celebrity.

Trump claims that his conversation is locker room talk, a place where one is uninhibited and, therefore, reveals one's true character. This locker room talk reveals also that he is a sex predator who has a sense of entitlement. In addition, in 1988, Trump was giving thought to running for president, as revealed in his interview with Oprah Winfrey, therefore, his statement in 2005 is relevant.

Unfortunately, Trump's treatment of women and perception of women has been buttressed by religious teachings over the years, and religious leaders must be repentant and lead the re-education of humanity. In the Ten Commandments, women are listed with things owned by a man - do not covet your neighbour's house, wife, slaves, ox, donkey or - 'anything that belongs to your neighbour' Exodus 20:17.

In addition, it was the husband only who could divorce the wife. Men had complete power over their wives and daughters, with Lot offering his virgin daughters to be gang-raped (Genesis 19). Women could be obtained by intercourse, dowry or contract. At the feeding of the 5,000 by Jesus, it stated 5,000 men, not including women and children (Matthew 14:21). Women did not count!

Jesus, the Christ, recognised that women's lives matter and nothing showed it more than the woman caught in adultery (John 8). The accusers brought her to be stoned. It is an obvious miscarriage of justice because her male partner was not brought to be stoned. No wonder Jesus told her that she was free to go. It is not a story about no punishment for sin, but rather that there ought to be equity in the justice system.

 

EVIDENT IN ALL HISTORY

 

This awful treatment of women is not confined to ancient religious history as, according to Christine Caine in Faith Gateway, "the history of our world - all periods of history, all continents, all cultural traditions - is rampant with damage, oppression, diminishment, contempt and hostility aimed at women". She adds that in India and Pakistan, women are stoned to death for adultery, and in Syria, they are raped and sold as slaves, and the men who perpetrate these heinous acts are excused based on religious theology.

We need to recapture that women are made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27). So when we ill-treat women, we are, in fact, tarnishing the image and intention of God. Women ought to be respected, appreciated and esteemed. The married woman who turned down Trump's advances should be celebrated. She was not frightened by his fame or fortune.

The Apprentice show propelled Trump to prominence. The Access to Hollywood is his Achilles heel. Trump, as possible president of the most dominant country in the world, has placed the place of women in the world on centre stage. Religion has a role, so too schools, music industry, beauty contest, workplace and politics in making women great again.

Let us grasp his opportunity to elevate women to their rightful place.

• Rev Devon Dick is pastor of the Boulevard Baptist Church in St Andrew. He is author of 'The Cross and the Machete', and 'Rebellion to Riot'. Send feedback to columns@ gleanerjm.com.