Donald Trump may have surprised somebody with his comment that GOP rival Carly Fiorina’s face wasn’t presidential material. But Fiorina wasn’t surprised. Fiorina knows what can happen when a challenger appears — she gave a speech about it a decade ago. Trump’s comment, widely viewed as evidence of his sexism and superficiality, saw Fiorina respond by referencing her rising position in the polls. Maybe she’s getting under Trump’s skin, Fiorina says, and that’s why Trump’s hurling skin deep insults. Fiorina knows the territory, knows about trying to “diminish, disgrace.” In a commencement address she gave in 2005 entitled What You Make Of Yourself Is Your Gift To God, Fiorina gave advice to the graduates that’s pretty useful in her current situation.
In her address at the North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Fiorina warned: “When you challenge other people’s ideas of who or how you should be, they may try to diminish and disgrace you. It can happen in small ways in hidden places, or in big ways on a world stage. You can spend a lifetime resenting the tests, angry about the slights and the injustices. Or, you can rise above it.”
[Fiorina’s speech is here: Remembering Who We Are: A Treasury of Conservative Commencement Addresses]