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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 10/7/17

Revisiting and Questioning Trump's Boasting to Billy Bush in 2005

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Camille Paglia claims that Hefner's magazine "is categorically not a world of unwilling women. Nor is it driven by masculine abuse. It is a world of show girls, of flamboyant femaleness, a certain kind of strutting style that has its own intoxicating sizzle of sexual allure."

But Camille Paglia sees Hefner's sexual cosmos (and Trump's?) as "retrograde and nostalgic."

But Camille Paglia also points out that "Part of his [Trump's] nationwide support seems to be coming from his bold defense of his own maleness."

Next, I want to discuss something else that Camille Paglia says in her discussion of Hefner. At one point, she says that "in fact, men, as I have argued in my books, are always struggling for identity against the enormous power of women." A few sentences later she refers explicitly to "Hefner's fear of women's actual power."

Camille Paglia's persona in her books is that of a feminist leader of the pro-sex wing of feminism. Even though Camille Paglia comes from an Italian-American Roman Catholic background, she describes herself today as an atheist.

Now, my favorite scholar is the American Jesuit polymath Walter J. Ong (1912-2003; Ph.D. in English, Harvard University, 1955). Ong's persona in his publications is that of a savvy guy.

Camille Paglia does not happen to advert explicitly to Ong's book Fighting for Life: Contest, Sexuality, and Consciousness (Cornell University Press, 1981), the published version of Ong's 1979 Messenger Lectures at Cornell University. Nevertheless, Ong himself argues that boys and men "are always struggling for identity against the enormous power of women" in their psyches -- to work out what Ong refers to as a specifically masculine sense of identity among other boys and men -- at least until the men at long last finally stop struggling against the enormous power of women in their psyches and work out a working relationship with the feminine dimension of their psyches.

Now, Trump is well-known for boasting. On the "Access Hollywood" video, he sounds like he is boasting to Billy Bush.

But what if Trump is actually boasting about something he has done more than once? Trump was a television celebrity. Certain male Hollywood celebrities attract female groupies, some of whom may be under-age (also known as "jail bait"). It is not unheard of for male Hollywood celebrities to have sex with certain female groupies. What if Trump is describing his own actions with certain female groupies that he as a male celebrity has attracted?

Why haven't investigative journalists investigated this possibility? Would it be impossible for investigative journalists to find any women today who might be willing to identify themselves as being among Trump's female groupies around 2005?

Would it be impossible for investigative journalists to find any women today who might be willing to identify themselves as voluntarily consenting to have sex with Trump when they were Trump groupies?

Did Trump around 2005 have sex with any under-age female groupie ("jail bait") who voluntarily consented to have sex with him?

Or is it the case that investigative journalists do not want to investigate Trump's possibly having sex with certain celebrity groupies because his case would just be the tip of the iceberg, so to speak, involving male Hollywood celebrities having sex with their female groupies -- perhaps including under-age female groupies ("jail bait") who voluntarily consent to have sex with them?

And what about the female groupies of male Hollywood celebrities -- and male sports celebrities and perhaps other male celebrities? Aren't many of the female groupies of male celebrities willing to voluntarily consent to have sex with certain male celebrities? Are such willing female groupies perhaps sexually voracious?

Or is it the case that investigative journalists would just prefer not to go there? Or is it the case that investigative journalists prefer not to go there because of a sex phobia at work in them -- and at work in American culture today?

But isn't online porn overflowing with portrayals of porn actresses who act as though they are sexually voracious? Or are those porn actresses just putting on acts of being sexually voracious -- for the benefit presumably of male consumers of porn? In general, porn actresses are better paid than porn actors, and perhaps certain porn actresses are not themselves sexually voracious in real life but are willing to be paid to put on the act of being sexually voracious in porn videos.

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Thomas James Farrell is professor emeritus of writing studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). He started teaching at UMD in Fall 1987, and he retired from UMD at the end of May 2009. He was born in 1944. He holds three degrees from Saint Louis University (SLU): B.A. in English, 1966; M.A.(T) in English 1968; higher education, 1974. On May 16, 1969, the editors of the SLU student newspaper named him Man of the Year, an honor customarily conferred on an administrator or a faculty member, not on a graduate student -- nor on a woman up to that time. He is the proud author of the book (more...)

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