More articles Monday 20 August 2018 12:11pm
Chelsea Clinton feels ‘protective’ of 12-year-old Barron Trump—regardless of what his father, Donald Trump, does.
Chelsea Clinton’s own experiences of media “bullying” when her father, Bill, was elected as the 42nd President of the United States, makes her “feel incredibly protective of Barron Trump”—even though she disagrees “with his father on everything”. Clinton was speaking today with Sally Magnusson about her new children’s book, She Persisted Around the World, at a sold-out event at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.
“I think in some ways; I’m grateful that I actually encountered the viciousness that so often characterises social media in my real life as a kid,” she explained. “After my dad won, they said my parents were moving into the White House with a cat – we had a cat at the time called Socks – and the family dog – which is how they referred to me,” she said.
“They’d talk about how ugly and unattractive I was, and I won’t say it was un-affecting – it definitely would hurt at some moments – but my overall reaction was… why are these older, generally white, men picking on a kid? That’s ludicrous. I was 12, and I knew that’s not right.”
Her sympathy for 12-year-old Barron William Trump, however, doesn’t change her view of his father. “I’m outraged every day about something our President has done, or said, or left undone; but I think I’m so fundamentally my mother’s daughter that I’m far more outraged by the Trump administration ripping children away from their families at the border, than anything he’s done to my family.”
Regarding her mother, Hillary, she explained that “everything she cared about on November 7th and November 8th – on the day before and the day of the election – she still cared about on November 9th. She still cared about supporting children and families, and women. Since then she has done a tremendous amount of works for women and young people, especially young people of colour, and women of colour to run for office, to hopefully really learn from her experience, and learn how to be resilient. She continues to work on helping child education, to help more families have access to things that every family should have, whether that’s diapers or books. She just continues to persist forward, in trying to have a positive impact, both inside and outside politics, in the way I’ve seen her do my entire life.
“Of course, it’s not the way I wanted to see her doing that,” Clinton admitted. “I think she would have been a uniquely extraordinary President and yet I’m not remotely surprised that she hasn’t pulled the covers over her head, because that’s not who my mother is.”
Having now written both American and global editions of She Persisted, each featuring the stories of 13 remarkable women, Clinton took the opportunity of the Book Festival to promote her idea of other writers producing their own editions of the book around the world. Several published authors in the audience volunteered to write editions featuring Scottish, Dutch and New Zealand women!
“Thankfully the first book resonated, so I had a chance to write a companion book,” Clinton said. “We need more stories centred on women, told by women and about remarkable women who have so often been at the forefront of progress, whether in human rights or the arts, in science, athletics and so much more.”