An absolutely appalling and offensive handwritten anti-Trump protest sign reading “Rape Melania” popped up at a Saturday night anti-Trump rally in Washington D.C. Melania Trump, as everyone in America most likely knows, is the wife of President-elect Donald Trump. The offensive sign was photographed at an anti-Trump protest at Washington D.C.’s new Trump International Hotel.
— Kimberly Corban (@Kimberly_Corban) November 13, 2016
The photos of the shocking “Rape Melania” anti-Trump protest sign, which was a stark black lettering on white background, show the sign being held well above the crowd of anti-Trump protesters at the hotel. In none of the photographs that began circulating on social media following the incident were any of the other protesters seen objecting to the sign or attempting to do anything to censor the chilling message it was sending.
While no one attending the anti-Trump rally where the “Rape Melania” sign was photographed appeared to be anguished or offended by the completely uncalled for sentiment, when the photos hit social media, the outrage was immediate and overwhelming, reports The Washington Post.
In fact, Americans from both sides of the political aisle have largely come together to emphatically condemn the display of the “Rape Melania” anti-Trump protest sign, as well as the grotesque sentiment it conveys. For the most part, the social media conversation sparked by the unacceptable protest sign was one of utter condemnation.
The Twitter talk circulating around the “Rape Melania” sign seen at the D.C. anti-Trump protests took over the social media platform to such a degree that, on Sunday, some Twitter users saw something disturbing pop up in their trending section. Namely, many tweeters saw the unbelievable words “Rape Melania” in their trending feed, which prompted even more discussion and outrage regarding the already horrific situation.
— Nanda (@frangiaq) November 13, 2016
Some Twitter users saw the words and believed that they, like the unfortunate #AssassinateTrump hashtag that trended following the election, were trending as a result of an overwhelming number of people making the suggestion that Melania Trump should be targeted for a sexual assault.
While a small, disturbing minority of Twitter users may have applauded or otherwise agreed with the “Rape Melania” anti-Trump protest sign and/or the message it conveyed, the fact of the matter is that the majority of the social media chatter surrounding the trending phrase was due to outrage. Not support of such an appalling and offensive sentiment.
Having a trend like "Rape Melania" is a crime! It should not be trending! pic.twitter.com/6IgygAbwBD
— PRESIDENTELECT TRUMP (@TrumpWithUSA) November 13, 2016
Not everyone who saw the “Rape Melania” phrase in their trending section was silent about the inappropriate nature of the offensive phrase, and they called out the social media platform for allowing the words to trend at all. Regardless of their context.
Twitter responded to critics of the shocking trend quickly and explained that “Rape Melania” was trending because the offensive photo of the anti-Trump D.C. protest sign was being denounced by the masses, not advocated. Either way, the folks who saw it on their Twitter homepage were largely disgusted and not at all amused.
— Simply Irredeemable (@hrhjmm) November 13, 2016
A man at the anti-Trump protest in DC shouts "My grandfather did not fight in World War II so I could fight Nazis myself 70 years later!"
— Natalie DiBlasio (@ndiblasio) November 10, 2016
Rioters outside of Trump Tower in NY are protesting to protect women's rights by holding up signs that say Rape Melania. Morons or Scumbags?
— Mark Young (@MarkYoungTruth) November 13, 2016
— Ezra Levant ???????? (@ezralevant) November 13, 2016
"Rape Melania" is trending because everyone's upset over a "Rape Melania" sign, not because thousands of people are saying "Rape Melania."
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) November 13, 2016
Not all users of the social media platform were subjected to the “Rape Melania” trend; Twitter trends are largely personalized and vary from user to user. Some of the factors that go into determining trends include an individual’s location, as well as who they follow on the platform.
While the Twitter trend outrage surrounding the phrase “Rape Melania” and the utterly without defense anti-Trump protest sign that spawned it appears to have been relatively short-lived, the sign (which appears to be held high by a pair of black-gloved hands in the photos) has set back the legitimacy of anti-Trump protesters across the nation.
Non-violent protests are one thing, calling for the sexual assault of the soon-to-be First Lady is another.
Now, many Trump voters and supporters are using the controversial “Rape Melania” anti-Trump protest sign as a reason to condemn the actions and motives of all anti-Trump protesters.
Anti-Trump protests have dominated America and the news since the early morning hours of November 9. That was when Donald Trump officially claimed victory in the 2016 presidential election; seemingly within moments, anti-Trump protesters hit the streets in major (and not so major) American cities. Sunday night marks the fifth night of the anti-Trump protests to sweep the nation, and once again, Portland is taking the brunt of the havoc.
4000 people estimated to be in the anti trump protest marching in DC, per a pd source pic.twitter.com/Xo12WetR9S
— john r stanton (@dcbigjohn) November 13, 2016
As Oregon Live reports, anti-Trump protests have plagued the overnight hours in the West Coast city for nights now. Unlike many of the other anti-Trump protests across the nation, which have remained largely peaceful, Portland has been a hotbed of anarchist behavior, violence, and vandalism.
Despite the chaos and destruction taking place in Portland, so far most Trump supporters and anti-Trump protesters agree that the “Rape Melania” sign photographed in Washington D.C. has been among the most offensive and out-of-life displays that have taken place.
In the wake of the trending “Rape Melania” phrase and the outrage that has surrounded the anti-Trump protest sign that triggered the controversy, anti-Trump protesters have emphatically stressed that the creator of that sign does not represent the views of the anti-Trump movement at large.
[Featured Image by Ethan Miller/Getty Images]