Donald Trump’s Latest Unbelievable Leak Continues To Minimize Women

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Maria Del Russo is a beauty editor at Refinery29. The views expressed here are her own.

Last Friday The Washington Post released the now-infamous tapes of Donald Trump making sexually abusive comments back in 2005. Since then, each day seems to bring a new chauvinistic comment of his to light — and today it's from a leaked transcript of unaired footage from a 2010 episode of Trump's show The Apprentice. The Huffington Post got a hold of the transcript from an episode entitled "Beauty and Brains." Since the premise is pretty ridiculous, allow me to condense it for you: Contestants were divided up into two teams and charged with polishing the image of two country music stars — Emily West and Luke Bryan. According to The Huffington Post, this included improving interview skills and producing promotional packets. But during the "boardroom session," the conversation quickly pivoted to West's looks — specifically, her skin. "I assume you're gonna leave this off, don't put this shit on the show, you know," he says, according to the transcript, "but her skin — her skin sucks, okay? I mean her skin, she needs some serious fuckin' dermatology." At which point, I hope, everyone in the room turned to Trump like this:
He, of course, continued. "Fuck. That's Emily, that's what I'm hearing about? Let me see the other one. I assume you're not putting this on the show. 'Cause I don't wanna destroy the kid's career," he says. "Personally, I am, as you probably heard, not a gay man, but I think [Bryan's] better looking that [sic] Emily okay?" Now, these comments are obviously not as horrible as the sexually explicit language he used in the 2005 tapes. But there is still so much to say here, I'm having trouble knowing where to begin. Let's begin with the obvious: Despite what the Simon Cowells of the world might think, a woman's appearance has nothing to do with her singing ability. If it did, trust me — I'd be rabidly searching for a lipstick that would allow me to sing like Adele. Trump's concern for her career is also extremely unfounded, mainly for the reason that most intelligent people wouldn't write off a woman simply because she has zits or otherwise. It's also bullshit because so many famous people have struggled with acne while in the spotlight — just look at any Proactiv ad. But more importantly, his comments reduce West down to her looks and not her talent in one fell swoop. And as many women and men can attest, having acne can seriously impact a person's self-worth. Those people will also tell you that not all skin complications can be fixed by "fuckin' dermatology," as Trump so eloquently stated. By shining a spotlight on her "issues" instead of her talent, he is minimizing her. And this behavior is nothing new for him. So I'd like to address Trump directly here: As a woman who struggled with acne as a young girl, hearing someone make mention of my zits was as painful as getting punched in the stomach. You confirm my worst fears: that no matter what I say or how I behave, when I leave a room, I am reduced to what my skin looks like. Your words speak for themselves, reducing us at every turn to the sum of our parts, rated and calibrated on your post-pubescent ideas of what's acceptable. Go ahead and dismiss this conversation as yet another example of your locker room smack. We know the truth, and will cling to it come Election Day. Remember, we women have locker rooms of our own. And you should hear what people are saying about you.

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