What kind of locker rooms does Donald Trump hang out in, I wonder?
I'm not here to tell you how to vote, that's your business. Besides, nothing anyone reads here is going to change anyone's mind any more than all those crazy Facebook memes are going to change anyone's mind. Everyone needs to make that decision on their own.
I hope the election is decided on the issues facing our country, and past private comments, no matter how ugly and immature they may be, are not the greatest of those issues.
Still, candidate Trump's recently aired words on women should be discussed. To dismiss or ignore such things would be the same as endorsing them as okay, and that would be a very bad message indeed in a society that already seems more vulgar and unkind by the day.
By now, everyone has heard the 2005 conversation caught on a hot TV mic with Trump bragging about kissing, grabbing and trying to have sex with women: "When you're a star, they let you do it," he said, before proceeding to embrace the young actress whose body he had just been describing as she approached the bus.
The term "creepy" springs to mind.
Trump dismissed his actions as "locker room talk."
And that is probably more troubling than the words themselves.
This implies that everyone treats and speaks about the opposite gender the way Trump does, and people have every right to resent that.
Trump, one would think, has been in a few locker rooms. He played a little baseball, football and a year of soccer (right winger?) back in boarding school. He owns 17 golf courses and is said to be a successful golfer (though Rick Reilly in his book "Who's Your Caddy" claimed that when it comes to golf score cheating, Trump "is 11 on a scale of 1 to 10").
To dismiss this Trump's behavior as something to simply be expected of any gathering of men, just regular guy stuff, should be pause for thought.
And then there was the "apology" - "If I offended anyone, I apologize."
If? Who's not offended by a person presuming the right to grab random people by the private parts? Where's the apology that says he is actually sorry for his behavior, not just sorry that some people don't think he is entitled to every female body he sees?
"Anyone who knows me knows these words don't reflect who I am," Trump says.
Don't they? Trump has said such things for years in appearances on the Howard Stern show and elsewhere, including implications that he has used his position as owner of a beauty pageant to bed the contestants and peek at them backstage as they change clothes. And a former producer of the "Apprentice" show claimed they have tape of Trump saying much worse than what has been revealed, which is still to come.
Is anyone, regardless of party affiliation, surprised? This is the very brash character that made a novelty candidate into a party nominee.
After all, this is a man who once posted on Twitter: "26,000 unreported sexual assults (sic) in the military - only 238 convictions. What did these geniuses expect when they put men & women together?"
So sexual assault is just par for the course any time women are around men? And we're to accept that?
Ask area coaches if the kind of talk Trump engages in is happening in their locker rooms, and what would happen if it did. Remember, athletes and men in general have mothers, sisters, daughters, girlfriends, classmates and other females in their lives, and disrespecting women is a fine way to get yourself handed a beating. It certainly isn't a way to make yourself look like a potential leader.
By my watch, it took about 24 hours for supporters to begin making excuses for Trump's comments. And that's okay. Some Republicans abandoned Trump or called for him to end his candidacy, and some did not. Also okay. Everyone has their choice, their right. Frankly, this kind of behavior is not about politics, but about the type of human being a person is. Both candidates seem to have their share of baggage on that account.
It took mere minutes for Democrats to gleefully use the Trump tape comments for their own political purposes, which wasn't very pretty either. One also has to wonder how long the involved media and the party knew of the existence of this tape, and whether the bombshell was squirreled away to be sprung as a distraction to developments in the Clinton email scandal or as a dagger for a key debate.
Yes, you'll vote as you will, or choose not to. Perhaps the Trump comments on women will make all the difference, or no difference at all.
Personally, I hope the vote doesn't turn on this, and that people take time to explore the candidates' positions on the issues.
But I also hope, regardless of the election, they give some thought to how they believe people should be viewed and treated, and that they are not afraid to speak up about it. That's a right too.