Despite delivering what was widely considered his best of three volatile debate performances, Donald Trump still managed to thoroughly self-sabotage his dwindling chances at the presidency by reinforcing the perception that he is a sexist.
While his unprecedented and dangerous disrespect for the peaceful transition of power between administrations ("I'll keep you in suspense...") generated the most immediate backlash, Trump's gendered epithet directed at Hillary Clinton could be the blunder that drives home the final nail in his campaign's proverbial coffin.
Trump to Hillary: "such a nasty woman" pic.twitter.com/2Fb87erPCR— BuzzFeed (@BuzzFeed) October 20, 2016
#NastyWoman ignited a social media firestorm, perhaps giving Hillary the fresh gust of feminist wind at her back that she so desperately needs in the final two weeks leading up to election day.
Politicians, celebrities, clothing companies and casual debate watchers alike joined in on the hashtag fracas.
When an idiot is out of place and doesn't have a proper response to a question, he will resort to name calling. #nastywoman— Lisa (@Raiderette517) October 20, 2016
Be the nasty woman you want to see in the world. #debatenight— Emily Arata (@aratatweets) October 20, 2016
There were also a number of references to Janet Jackson's 1986 hit single "Nasty," including this awesome remix video that splices Trump's words over the track:
When they go low we get NASTY! pic.twitter.com/z9rAZYH0V2— Courtney Enlow (@courtenlow) October 20, 2016
All in all, the #nastywoman phenomenon is a classic example of a feminist re-appropriation of a deplorable insult hurled by a narcissistic, misogynistic, creepy old white dude, converting it into an effective rallying cry, a cause célèbre.
It's unclear why Donald Trump, who has repeatedly claimed he has "more respect for women" than anyone in history, can't stop saying insulting things about them.
Women are the largest voting demographic in our democracy, so maybe Michael Moore is right and Trump never wanted the responsibility of the presidency to begin with? There is no more surefire way to lose an election than to alienate women en masse.
Call me a #nastywoman and show me to the voting booth— Ashley Clements (@TheAshleyClem) October 20, 2016
There is already a "Nasty Woman" t-shirt for sale, and the proceeds go towards benefiting women's healthcare by way of Planned Parenthood.