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Stop Talking About Melania Trump Like She’s A Hostage


A writer argues that Melania’s Instagram posts prove she’s being held hostage in Trump Tower, which makes her a really bad feminist. 


To some people of the Internet, it’s unfathomable that a woman like Melania Trump would chose to marry and stick by Donald Trump. To them, the only possible explanation is that she must be a hostage, unable to leave even if she wanted to.

At first, there were cries for help. (Remember #FreeMelania?) But now there are only cries for her damnation. If she is a hostage, it’s because she wanted it. She’s complicit in her own captivity, and her Instagram proves it!

“She is Rapunzel with no prince and no hair, locked in a tower of her own volition, and delighted with the predictability and repetition of her own captivity,” Kate Imbach wrote in a post published by Medium entitled: “Fairytale Prisoner by Choice: The Photographic Eye of Melania Trump.” Imbach trawled Melania’s Instagram posts looking for proof that she sees herself as a prisoner. Get a load of this steaming pile of garbage.

There is a striking passivity to the Trump Tower view photographs. She never changed the composition of these landscapes, she placed no personal mark on them. The time of day changes, she takes a photo, that’s it. There is a calmness, a kind of safety, to this approach. The earth moves around the sun but the photographer is stable, in the exact same position, day after day.

. . .

Darker still is that she’s in there today, looking down at the rest of us, from her home in Trump Tower, like a queen.These photographs pose another question: if a person spends most of her time looking physically down at the rest of humanity, does she come to take her superiority as a matter of fact?

This is b-a-n-a-n-a-s, my friends! Just because Melania likes posting photos of the stunning view from her home doesn’t mean she never goes outside. Nor does it makes her Marie Antionette. It makes her a lady who, like the rest of us, wants to post photos of nice things to her Instagram.

It gets worse. Imbach goes as far as to say that Melania’s Instagram makes her “unfit” for her responsibilities as first lady.

Melania Trump is the woman least fit for public service in the entirety of the United States of America. We should expect nothing from her. She’s living inside a dark fairytale, and in fairytales the women trapped in towers never save anyone but themselves.

Not only is this deranged psychobabble, it’s sexist. Just because Melania is married to someone who can be loathsome doesn’t mean we should assume she’s being kidnapped and then go as far to say she brought it all on herself.

For the sake of argument, let’s pretend for a second that Melania really is being held against her will, locked away in Trump Tower like a modern-day Rapunzel. One’s normal reaction would be to help, not condemn, her. I’m old enough to remember when it was uncool to blame the victim, but I guess when the victim’s last name is “Trump,” those rules don’t apply.

Reducing the first lady to nothing more than a reclusive kook because she’s married to a man who’s a Republican is not just disempowering for women, it’s also embarrassing. It sends the message that women can only make decisions for themselves when it fits a certain agenda. If a woman dares to question the feminist gods, she will be punished. Whatever happened to self-determination?