Trump's message to young men in the #MeToo era: Be afraid

President Donald Trump got something of a softball from CBS News' Steven Portnoy at his press conference in ...

Posted: Sep 27, 2018 12:14 PM
Updated: Sep 27, 2018 12:14 PM

President Donald Trump got something of a softball from CBS News' Steven Portnoy at his press conference in New York Wednesday: What's your message to the young men of America?

It was a softball because the single most obvious message a President could issue to young men right now is to respect women.

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But Trump went in a wildly different direction, arguing the US is in a dark period as women come forward to say they've been assaulted.

For context, this is the question Portnoy asked:

Portnoy: "About the hearing tomorrow, you were asked earlier by my friend from Sky News about the message that you are sending the women of the country. What about the message that you may be sending to young men? You're a father. What does this moment we're in, the cultural moment..."

Trump: "It's a very big cultural moment."

Portnoy: "Right, so what message do you have for the young men of America?"

The big cultural moment is the #MeToo movement, along with the outpouring of women coming forward to share stories of harassment and assault.

The President, however, did not give the easy answer. Instead, he told them they could be next.

Complaining that his Supreme Court nominee is accused of sexual assault and reliving his own anger at the many allegations levied against him over the years and during the presidential campaign, Trump returned to the idea he put forward earlier in the news conference that all of these allegations against him and Kavanaugh are, respectively, part of a "big fat con job."

It was in that earlier question by the Sky News reporter that Trump said calling something a "con job" really wasn't that bad and he's said worse in the past.

Trump pointed at Portnoy and said, "I could have you chosen for a position ... and somebody could say things. And it's happened to me, many times, where false statements are made and honestly, nobody knows who to believe."

He didn't stop there.

"I could pick another Supreme Court judge, justice. I could pick another one, another one, another one. This could go on forever. Somebody could come and say 30 years ago, 25 years ago, 10 years ago, five years ago he did a horrible thing to me. He did this, he did that, he did this, he did that. And honestly, it's a very dangerous period in our country."

He said the dangerous time is "being perpetrated by some very evil people, some of whom are Democrats, I must say."

"It's a game that they're playing," he said. "It's a con game at the highest level."

Trump said there's a danger some candidates might not want to even be nominated for the Supreme Court after seeing what's happened to the "wonderful man" Brett Kavanaugh.

It's bigger than the court, though, according to Trump.

"This is beyond Supreme Court. This is everything to do with our country. When you are guilty until proven innocent, it's just not supposed to be that way," Trump said.

"Always I've heard you're innocent until proven guilty. I've heard this so long. It's such a beautiful phrase. In this case, you're guilty until proven innocent. I think that is a very dangerous standard for our country."

Then Trump said all that being said, he looks forward to hearing what both Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford have to say during testimony Thursday.

Portnoy tried to get him to give a more specific message to young men, but Trump ended the press conference.

He didn't really need to say more. The message Trump delivered to young men is this: Be afraid.

Which is not as good a message as don't assault women.

Trump actually sort of predicted the last question would be a difficult one for him when, just before allowing Portnoy to ask it.

"Elton John said when you hit that last tune and it's good, don't go back. I've seen, have you ever seen, they do great, they hit the last tune and everyone goes crazy, then they go back for an encore, alright? And they don't hit it. And they leave - everyone leaves and they say that wasn't a very good concert."

"Let's go," Trump told Portnoy. "Don't make me wrong."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 91935

Reported Deaths: 2780
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds6903153
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Harrison368771
Jackson334367
Madison318086
Rankin313473
Lee254066
Jones236078
Forrest231069
Washington215671
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Panola140926
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Pontotoc120416
Pike120148
Monroe117665
Scott115925
Copiah115433
Coahoma110927
Holmes108458
Marshall106714
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Lincoln104453
Yazoo103429
Simpson100142
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Marion83633
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Attala63625
Chickasaw63524
Tippah63516
Walthall58925
Clay56216
Hancock55420
Noxubee54015
Jasper53615
Clarke52538
Smith51714
Calhoun50612
Tunica47213
Montgomery45020
Claiborne44916
Lawrence42212
Yalobusha41314
Perry39016
Humphreys36915
Quitman3625
Stone34611
Greene33516
Webster32813
Jefferson Davis32211
Carroll30812
Amite30710
Wilkinson30117
Kemper28515
Sharkey25812
Jefferson2359
Benton2151
Franklin1863
Choctaw1775
Issaquena1033
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 128818

Reported Deaths: 2284
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson18648332
Mobile12949288
Montgomery8560170
Madison736573
Tuscaloosa7015112
Lee558259
Shelby550149
Baldwin502148
Marshall376342
Etowah326344
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Morgan312925
Houston260621
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Walker217780
Talladega199925
Limestone191919
Cullman180017
Franklin172728
Dallas172526
Russell16912
Autauga162424
Lauderdale159231
Colbert157224
Escambia154324
Blount150413
Jackson146610
Chilton143325
Dale128042
Covington127027
Coffee12388
Pike11329
Tallapoosa112483
Chambers110642
Clarke104417
Marion91428
Butler90238
Barbour8097
Marengo69319
Winston68512
Lowndes64327
Pickens62214
Bibb6179
Hale60828
Bullock58514
Randolph58512
Lawrence57620
Monroe5708
Washington54513
Geneva5404
Perry5356
Wilcox52911
Cherokee52816
Clay5187
Conecuh51611
Crenshaw51531
Macon46619
Henry4524
Sumter41719
Fayette4128
Choctaw34212
Lamar3302
Cleburne3116
Greene29915
Coosa1573
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