Writing about Billy Bush and that leaked 2005 Access Hollywood tape just a few weeks before Donald Trump is sworn in as the 45th president of the United States feels like a fever dream. Here was the soon-to-be president-elect bragging about sexually assaulting women. Here was the soon-to-be president-elect boasting that his celebrity was a pass to degrade and abuse any woman in his path.
Astonishingly, Billy Bush managed to suffer harsher consequences for what was said on that tape—he was promptly fired from the Today show by NBC—than the cretin running for president, which shouldn’t have happened. But I’m glad he suffered. It was a perfectly crystallized moment of what happens when two toxic beta bros who have convinced themselves they are alphas because of the accomplishments of their families (Bush is a cousin to the former presidential family) speak about their entitlement to women’s bodies as if they were toys that could be bought. When sexual predator Trump tells his minion that he “grabs women by the pussy,” Bush can be heard laughing along and encouraging his declarations of assault like a douche fratboy who thinks sexual conquests are a measure of self-worth. Bush deserves eternal shame, and I’m glad he lost his job. At the same time, I just wish it were Trump who got fucked. —Erik Abriss