Tuesday, at an event in Haverford, Pennsylvania, a 15-year-old girl named Brennan addressed Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and offered troubling insight as to how Donald Trump’s hostile, vile, and sexist rhetoric has aggravated the issue of body-image shaming at her high school.
“At my school, body image is a really big issue for girls my age,’ she told Clinton. ‘I see with my own eyes the damage Donald Trump does when he talks about women and how they look.’”
Brennan wanted to know what Clinton planned to do as president to
“…Undo some of that damage and help girls understand that they are so much more than what they look like.”
“’I’m so proud of you for asking that question,’ the Democratic nominee replied. ‘You are right, my opponent has just taken this concern to a new level of difficulty and meanness. And you know, it’s shocking when women are called names and judged on the basis, solely on the basis of physical attributes.”’
The Democratic nominee went on to offer this advice to young women who are currently experiencing the type of body-image shaming that Trump openly promotes:
“‘We need to laugh at it, we need to refute it, we need to ignore it. And we need to stand up to it and especially the bullying.’
‘The pressure of being talked about that way leads some women to try and hurt themselves,’ she pointed out. ‘So we have to be clear as possible, you are more than the way you look.’”
A report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed that the number of suicides among young women increased by 45 percent between 1999 and 2014.
The study noted that body-image issues and low-self esteem to be among the root causes of self-harm among young women. According to the study, the suicide rate for girls between the ages of 10 and 14 more than tripled during the same period.
“‘With the prevalence of social media, girls are exposed to cyber-bullying at a young age. Often they hide their depression and resort to self-harm. The case of Amanda Todd is a perfect example,’ Sarah Fader, CEO and Founder of Stigma Fighters, a nonprofit organization that encourages individuals with mental illness to share their personal stories, told us. ‘Amanda was 15 when she committed suicide. She was maliciously bullied online as well in school. Despite her family’s efforts to stop the abuse, she engaged in self-harm and eventually took her own life. She isn’t the only young woman who has taken her life as a result of online bullying. There is an epidemic causing young women to engage in self-harm and suicidal behavior.'”
Earlier this year, Clinton addressed Trump’s rhetoric as it related to the promotion of body-image shaming in this powerful political ad.
Trump and his surrogates continue to try and polish the GOP nominee’s toxic history regarding his treatment of women.
And while the billionaire bully’s words continue to haunt him throughout his campaign, they also serving to educate and inform more and more women who will be going to the ballot box in November.
Featured image via YouTube.