Below is a new Medium piece by Lynn Tramonte entitled “Alicia Machado Stood Up to a Bully,” followed by a statement by Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, regarding Donald Trump’s efforts to smear Alicia Machado.
Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director of America’s Voice, recounts the bravery of Alicia Machado in her battle against Trump’s racist, bigoted attacks. The entire piece is available here and below:
Clearly, Alicia Machado has gotten under Donald Trump’s skin. He woke up early this morning and immediately began tweeting more trash about her:
Donald J. Trump ✔@realDonaldTrump: Wow, Crooked Hillary was duped and used by my worst Miss U. Hillary floated her as an “angel” without checking her past, which is terrible!
Donald J. Trump ✔@realDonaldTrump: Using Alicia M in the debate as a paragon of virtue just shows that Crooked Hillary suffers from BAD JUDGEMENT! Hillary was set up by a con.
Donald J. Trump ✔@realDonaldTrump: Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a U.S. citizen so she could use her in the debate?
Ms. Machado has had direct personal experience with Donald Trump’s racism and sexism, and she dared to speak up. She embarrassed him in front of a national audience. And, as the bully that he is, he fought back the only way he knows: with lies and insults. Meanwhile his friends — so-called Republican leaders — are backing him up instead of calling him out.
Picture the scene: a schoolyard full of kids on recess. After years of just taking and taking it, The Girl finally stands up to The Big Bully. She does it bravely. She does it in front of everyone. How does The Big Bully react? He lashes out, aiming for her most vulnerable places. Her body image. Her sexuality. Her very right to be in this country.
The Big Bully’s allies — in this case, Newt Gingrich and Paul Ryan, among other national Republican figures — either join in the taunts or circle silently behind him. They certainly don’t take The Girl’s side and stand up to him.
In Trump’s Machado Moment, Americans are not only watching how this man behaves: his temperament, his objectification of women, his obvious racism. They’re also watching to see how Republican “leaders” address the issue. So far, they’re still backing him. What a stain on their party.
As Ryan Grim and Emily Peck with the Huffington Post pointed out, it would be “poetic justice” if Trump’s obsessive attacks on two immigrants — Khizr Khan and Alicia Machado — were the straws that broke his campaign’s back.
In this beautiful post “For All the ‘Miss Housekeepings’ — Including My Mom”, my friend Gabe Ortiz wrote: “when Donald Trump attempts to denigrate Alicia Machado as ‘Miss Housekeeping,’ it’s personal. Donald Trump not only insults her, he insults me and the many other US citizens who call housekeepers and domestic workers our mothers. Our message to Donald Trump must be clear: we won’t forget, and we will vote.”
In life, when The Big Bully finally gets taken down, his allies who stood by go down with him. That’s you, Republican leaders.
Voters outraged by Trump’s attacks on women, immigrants, Muslims, and other Americans — even military families and judges — aren’t just appalled and angry at Trump the Bully. Your complicity — active or silent — also enrages.
Frank Sharry’s statement regarding Donald Trump’s efforts to smear Alicia Machado:
An immigrant speaks up. He or she challenges Donald Trump for demeaning and dehumanizing entire groups of Americans. Trump and his surrogates then go after the immigrant with all the smears and innuendo they can muster.
It happened with Jorge Ramos, a naturalized citizen from Mexico, when he challenged Trump during a press conference. At first, Trump ignored him as if Ramos wasn’t even there. Then Trump angrily told Ramos to sit down. After telling Ramos to “go back to Univision” he had his security throw the journalist out of the press conference. As Ramos was ushered into the room outside the press conference, a Trump supporter said to Ramos, “get out of my country.” Ramos quietly replied, “This is my country, I’m a U.S. citizen, too.”
It happened with the Khan family, when the Gold Star parents challenged Trump’s ignorance of the U.S. Constitution and lack of personal sacrifice at the Democratic convention. Trump then went after the couple, zeroing in on the grief-stricken mother, Ghazala, for not speaking during the presentation of her husband Khizr. Ghazala did speak up, in a powerful Washington Post op-ed and in TV interviews. Meanwhile, Trump’s friends falsely accused the Khans of being associated with the Muslim Brotherhood.
It happened when Hillary Clinton invoked the story and name of Alicia Machado. Insulted and bullied by Trump for gaining a few pounds as Miss Universe some twenty years ago, she has become outspoken. She recently became a citizen so she can vote against Trump and for Clinton. Now Trump, in today’s tweetstorm, is tripling down on his attacks. He insinuates she has a criminal past, starred in a porn movie and that her path to citizenship was somehow corruptly aided by Clinton and the Democrats, none of which is true.
The goal? To slime, to bully, to intimidate, to silence.
The message? You aren’t an equal. You’re not one of us. If you challenge me I will take you down.
The context? When he says he will make America great again, he means he’s going to put aggrieved white men back on top; put women back in their place; and tell immigrants to shut up and get out.
Trump’s pattern of smearing and attacking immigrants who challenge him reveals not only a characterological defect. It informs his policy stances. He wants to deport millions of immigrants. He wants to ban Muslims from entering the country. He wants to do away with “political correctness,” code for men being men, women being thin and attractive, and minorities and “others” being viewed as guilty until proven innocent.
Without question, Trump’s malignant narcissism, authoritarian instincts, and bigotry should be enough to repulse voters. But the fact that he bases his policy stances on these disorders is what makes him truly dangerous.