Donald Trump has insulted pretty much everyone. (Or at least 258 celebrities, politicians, news organizations, geographic locations, political parties and groups of people.) But of all the Republican candidate’s targets, women earn among his harshest criticisms, based on theirlooks, on motherhood and the reproductive system, and their positions in business.
So when15-year-old Brennan Leach posed a bold question to Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton on her foe’s record of body-shaming women and how she would empower women, it was a victorious moment for women everywhere.
“At my school, body image is a really big issue for girls my age,” Leach said to Clinton, her daughter Chelses and actress Elizabeth Banks at the Haverford, Pennsylvania, town hall.”I see with my own eyes the damage Donald Trump does when he talks about women and how they look.”
“As the first female president, how would you undo some of that damage, and help girls understand that they are so much more than just what they look like?”
The crowd cheered. Clinton beamed, thanking Leach for her question, the first of the evening.
“You’reright, my opponent has just taken this concern to a new level of difficulty and meanness,” Clinton said.”And you know, it’s shocking when women are called names and judged on the basis, solely on the basis of physical attributes.”
“Think about it: My opponent insulted Miss Universe, how do you get more acclaimed than that?” Clinton laughed, referencing Trump’s comments against Alicia Machado, the 1996 Miss Universe. Trump called her “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.” He said she “gained a massive amount of weight.” And in 1996, Trump had dozens of cameramen and reporters crowd a gym where they accompanied Machado as she exercised.
On overcoming the body-shaming Leach mentioned, Clinton had this advice: “We need to laugh at it. We need to refute it. We need to ignore it.We have to stand up to it. Especially the bullying. There are too many young women online being bullied about how they look, and being shamed and mistreated.”