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April 28 2017

Booing Ivanka Trump

by Charlotte Hays

In New Yorker writer Amy Davidson's view, German Chancellor Angela Merkel's invitation to Ivanka Trump to be on a panel with other powerful women was merely  part of the "international project of flattering Ivanka Trump." But not to worry. The first daughter was booed when, in response to a question, she said that her father wants women and families to thrive:  

“You hear the reaction from the audience,” [German business weekly editor Miriam] Meckel interrupted. According to press reports, the sound from the crowd was somewhere between a gasp, a boo, and a hiss. Meckel asked Trump to comment on “some attitudes toward women your father has publicly displayed” and how those might raise doubts about his commitment to empowering women.

“I’ve certainly heard the criticism from the media, and that’s been perpetuated,” Trump said, but added that her own experience, and that of women who worked for him, demonstrated otherwise. When asked, more specifically, how she advised him, she said, “It’s been an ongoing discussion I’ve had with my father most of my adult life, and we’re very aligned in many, many areas. And that’s why he’s encouraged me to fully lean into this opportunity and come into the White House and be by his side.” The implication was that nepotism was one of her father’s virtues, and proof of his good character.

Chelsea Clinton--quite rightly--would never have been asked about her father's sexual misconduct at a formal international gathering of powerful women.  

Ms. Trump, in fairness, is older than her friend Chelsea was when Ms. Clinton's father's misconduct was making headlines and Trump has a position in the White House. She's also gracious and can take care of herself. It's the glee in a New Yorker piece at the president's daughter being booed abroad that deserves notice.

Ivanka Trump is supportive of a World Bank fund to mentor women throughout the world--the kind of thing progressives generally love, but, when a Trump does it, must be ridiculed.

Davidson's real beef with Ivanka is of course merely that she is her father's daughter and that she has not turned on her father (that would have made her a heroine to The Resistance). Davidson notes that, by contrast, another member of the Berlin panel, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, whose country of origin is the Argentina, had made a different choice. Queen Maxima did not invite her father, the leader of a junta, to her wedding. "Even royalty has to listen sometimes," Davidson coos.

And then this:

Because this was, indeed, a panel of very smart women, the disjunction presented by that stray remark did not go entirely unnoticed. “Chrystia, you mentioned ‘father,’ ” Christine Lagarde said. “I agree with you, but I just want to say, to all the women who either never had a father because they did not know him, or lost their father, you can pick and choose a father. They exist around, and they can be tremendous mentors, and I hope we can support that idea, because no one should feel left out in that game.” It was one of the more powerful moments in the session, and also a reminder that being a certain kind of daughter is a choice, too. Ivanka Trump smiled blandly, as if she didn’t mind who else joined that game. She had already won.

Bizarre. I don't know quite what Lagarde was getting at--maybe a PC nod to women who've grown up in single-parent families? Who knows. But Davidson sees it, quite likely accurately, as a dig at Ivanka. Ivanka should have rejected her father in favor of a better mentor. But Trump maintained her composure and, though not quite in the way intended by Davidson, she did win.

Ben Stein thinks Ms. Trump should have been more confrontational ("What Ivanka Trump Should Have Said Upon Being Booed in Germany"), and it's tempting--after all, booing the president's daughter is also an insult to the millions of benighted Americans who voted for him and whose tax dollars have been such a benefit to international organizations favored by Lagarde and others. .

But  Ms. Trump did the right thing--unlike Dad, doesn't take the bait.

Independent Women’s Forum’s mission is to improve the lives of Americans by increasing the number of women who value free markets and personal liberty. Sister organization of Independent Women’s Voice.
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