The Slatest

Trump Is Worried About How Frequently Young Men Get Accused of Sexual Assault: “It’s A Very Scary Time”

President Donald Trump approaching microphones at the White House on Tuesday.
President Donald Trump walks to the microphones to take questions as he departs the White House in Washington on Tuesday. Jim Watson/Getty Images

“It’s a very scary time for young men in America if you can be guilty of something you may not be guilty of,” Trump told reporters Tuesday at the White House as part of an impromptu defense of Brett Kavanaugh. “My whole life I’ve heard you’re innocent until proven guilty, but now you’re guilty until proven innocent.”

This was not the first time Trump has used the allegations against Kavanaugh as a jumping off point for worrying about the broader effects of women being more willing to go public about their sexual abusers. In a press conference last week at the United Nations, Trump said that he had been accused of sexual misconduct several times, as have many of his friends and associates, and that this had affected how he viewed the allegations against Kavanaugh. “Well, it does impact my opinion, you know why? Because I’ve had a lot of false charges made against me,” Trump said. “So when I see it, I view it differently than somebody sitting at home watching television.”

And as he more succinctly put it Tuesday: “This is a very difficult time. What’s happening here has much more to do than even the appointment of the Supreme Court justice. It really does.” On this, Trump and his feminist critics certainly agree.