We’re harming more than just the president

Shae Slaughter

Our current presidential administration has seen its fair share of scandals. There have been plenty of news cycles concerned with firings, hirings and much more. However, in the last few months we’ve also seen an uptake in discussion about claims related to Donald Trump’s infidelity. While I am a proponent of honesty I do believe that in this case some matters are better left private.

The cases of Trump’s sexual missteppings seem to be ever growing. There are numerous women who have stated that they were sexually harassed or assaulted by Trump, and now there are two women openly admitting that they engaged in a consensual affair with him. At first, it seemed like these story topics might run in the same vein of news, but in reality they’re very different. 

The claims of harassment or assault against our current president are extremely important. If they are true it means that the president has engaged in criminal activity, and he certainly shouldn’t get away with it. Citizens and voters of the U.S. undoubtedly have a right to know this information. 

Still, when it comes to the stories of Trump’s supposed affairs, my feelings are a little different. Yes, being unfaithful while your married is a huge sign that your morals are questionable, but it isn’t (unfortunately) a crime. By no means am I justifying the action itself, but by filling news stations with questions of Trump’s marriage we are harming far more than just his political career.

Oftentimes, I fear that we forget that Trump has a family. A real family that can be hurt by all of this news, true or not. He has a wife who must continue to perform a certain set of first lady duties as rumors run rampant about her supposedly unfaithful husband. He also has children, the youngest of which is only 12, and they are constantly seeing headlines about their dad’s marriage problems.

Yes, it is very possible that Trump has had an affair, but that doesn’t mean that his marriage needs to become some sort of cash cow. The most recent woman to have alleged an affair with Trump, Karen McDougal, claims that she wants to apologize to Melania, and quite honestly I call BS. If McDougal was really motivated by regret and empathy she would have come clean and apologized to Melania’s face instead of going straight to news stations. The same goes for Stormy Daniels, the woman who first claimed to have an affair with Trump. 

Of course, the truth needs to come out about these things, but there is a big difference between just being honest and choosing to feed into the media storm. If these affairs happened it is of course reprehensible, but it’s not like they’re exactly groundbreaking character information about President Trump. The American people are well aware of his moral makeup, and at this point these affairs seem to be more for profit than for anything else. 

It is shameful to extort the Trump family’s pain in matters such as these. Yes, they’re now one of the most famous families in the world, but that doesn’t mean that they signed up to be humiliated. In cases such as these, if the women are speaking the truth, the blame is purely on President Trump and the mistress involved. We shouldn’t be glorifying these women. They took part in the ruining of a marriage, and they’ve profited off the pain. Shame on them.