"When Republicans nominated a crude misogynist to oppose a candidate who looked like she might be the nation’s first female president, the 2016 election seemed like it would be, at least in part, a referendum on America’s entire record of discrimination and abuse against women.
The results of that referendum were clear: proud admissions of sexual assault, an inability to see women as anything but sex objects, and a penchant for sexual humiliation were not enough to keep the country’s least-qualified major party nominee in history out of the White House. For anyone who voted for Donald Trump, bald-faced racism and sexism were not the deal-breakers they should have been. Hatred of women was on the ballot in November, and it won.
But there is a thin, tarnished silver lining to the platform Trump gave to his misogynist worldview this year. As both the president-elect and his alleged victims described the uninvited sexual contact he regularly imposed upon women, mainstream observers were made to consider that the more minor violations they described—forced kisses, gropes, and grabs—belonged on the spectrum of sexual assault."
2016 was the year America learned what sexual assault looks like.