Our View: Women shouldn’t be degraded

In June, Vice President Joe Biden gave a powerful speech reaffirming his commitment to combating sexual harassment, stating that, “We will have succeeded when not a single woman who is violated ever, ever asks herself the question, ‘What did I do?'”

Fast-forward to the month before Election Day, The Washington Post recently released a tape in which Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump can be heard making obscene remarks about women — comments so crass that any publication would be uncomfortable running the words used by the presidential candidate.

The videos were recorded in 2005, but Trump’s rhetoric seemingly hasn’t changed; this election cycle has seen comedian Rosie O’Donnell, Fox News political commentator Megyn Kelly, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, and countless other women targeted by Trump’s misogynistic undertones.

As college students, in a time where sexual assault on campuses is a growing problem across the nation, there should be genuine concern surrounding Trump’s reprehensible treatment of women. His comments are a stark contrast to the Obama administration’s dedication to protecting women both on-and off-college campuses.

The previous eight years have seen much progress, but there is still much work to be done.

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center provides statistics about the nationwide epidemic — and the numbers are staggering: One in five women are raped throughout their lives, 91 percent of all rape victims are female and 20 percent of females on college campuses are sexually assaulted.

The numbers reveal a harrowing reality that gender inequality reaches far beyond the wage gap.

Trump has delivered a clear message to women: under his presidency, your government will not fight for you — that, 96 years after winning the right to vote, you are in a struggle to maintain your basic rights as human beings.

Trump has made it clear that the aforementioned statistics mean nothing to him.

Biden once stated that those who survive sexual assault “are not statistics. They’re our sisters; they’re our classmates; they’re our friends.”

These sentiments are endangered by Trump’s boorish dehumanization of women, a societal threat that should be considered in polling booths this November.

Regardless of whether you are a man or woman, it is our collective responsibility to ensure that Trump’s senseless degradation of women doesn’t pervade Kent State or any other college campus.