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Meet the Dominatrix Trying to Take Down Donald Trump

She's launched a campaign to shame the Republican presidential candidate with 1,000 tiny dildos.

This article originally appeared on VICE US.

I walk into a restaurant in Downtown, Los Angeles. It's Friday night, and I'm late because the parking lots around here only take cash, and obviously no one carries that anymore. But after a traversing the streets, desperately hunting for an ATM, I've finally made it, to the Dominatrices Against Donald Trump! Presidential Party and Fundraiser, hosted by Mistress Tara Indiana, head dominatrix and founder of the BDSM playpen Den of Iniquity. I'm here because Mistress Tara is running for president.

Mistress Tara invited me to the fundraiser personally, after reading a VICE article I'd written about one of her workshops. She wasn't thrilled about this, so I'm nervous. The program for the night, according to my ticket, includes a sit-down dinner and Mistress Tara's presidential stump speech, followed by a burlesque show and some mingling among members of the BDSM community. There's also going to be a raffle.

"Are you here for the event?" a hostess asks as I walk in. The restaurant isn't rented out, so I assume she says "event" to maintain some level of discretion or anonymity. I nod yes, and she tells me to find my place card.

There are about 50 people in attendance: an assortment of professional mistresses and their male subs, Tara's childhood friends, and some photographers. And me. There are also two old friends of mine from high school sitting at the bar, but they're not here for Tara; I nod and wait for the rumors to start circulating about the new crowd I've started hanging out with.

I head to the press table, but my place card isn't there. So I walk to a few other tables, and realize I don't see my name anywhere. I start to think the Doms Against Donald are playing some kind of elaborate prank on me, and my immediate reaction is to freak out and bolt, because that's my immediate reaction to most situations. You don't belong here, I tell myself. Run. So I do.

I walk back outside, already planning to call this piece off, or write about how I was duped over by a dominatrix. This is my payback for writing that article about Mistress Tara's workshop in the first place: A 30-minute drive and $10 for parking to walk around a restaurant humiliated. But eventually, I take a breath, suck it up, and head back inside to explain the seating issue to the hostess.

This time, she tells me to follow her, and suddenly I find myself face-to-face with Mistress Tara. There's my nametag—it's been waiting for me all along, seating me at her table. We exchange a polite hello, and she tells me she's glad I could make it. I do not know why, but for some reason, I'm intimidated. Like seeing a teacher out of school for the first time and expecting to be assigned homework while at the grocery store, I keep expecting to be whipped or flogged at a dinner party.

Seated to my left is an older gentleman who, within minutes of arriving, will not stop talking. He is an infectious disease doctor, which I know because he tells me every few minutes. He doesn't admit to practicing BDSM, but hell, does he know a lot about it. When he finds out I'm writing an article on the event, he asks that I not identify him in the piece. He also asks for the paper and pen from my purse and proceeds to take extensive notes for me.

He explains to me the pleasures of cock and ball torture; I zone out but it has something to do with nerve endings. He tells me BDSM isn't a fetish but rather a sexual orientation. This is all well and good, but I'm here to cover a presidential campaign. Even in a world where women reign, there seems to be room for some well-intentioned mansplaining.

Our conversation is interrupted when a photographer comes up and addresses a tall blond mistress seated at the table next to me. "Do you mind if I take your picture?" he asks. She waits a beat and looks up from her cell phone. "Babe, I'd be pissed if you didn't," she laughs, before posing for about five different shots that look remarkably the same.

Eventually, Mistress Tara begins her speech. She doesn't have a podium; instead a subordinate male kneels at her feet gratefully, holding her the text of her address steady in the air. He is flogged every time it is time to turn the page. None of this seems to be taken very seriously, though, and the crowd laughs and cheers as she speaks. The other diners at the restaurant—the ones who aren't here for Tara—are Snapchatting the scene in bewilderment.

In an election cycle that bears striking resemblance to Mike Judge's Idiocracy, all of this somehow doesn't seem that out of the ordinary. It seems like these days, anything goes. Maybe a dominatrix is what we need to "whip America back into shape," as Mistress Tara's campaign slogan suggests. Following the fundraiser, I spoke to the stunt candidate herself about what she's attempting to accomplish with her campaign, and how she plans to shame her "rival," Donald Trump.

VICE: Why did you decide to get involved in this election?
Mistress Tara: I wanted to bring attention to how utterly broken our political system is. What is both glorious and tragic about this election cycle is how clearly it illustrates a core principle of our country – that anyone, and I do mean anyone, can run for president. Whether that be a washed up reality-TV star, a person being investigated by the FBI or a dominatrix. Really, of all these choices, you have to ask yourself, "Which is the most ridiculous?"

Is there a correlation between BDSM and politics? There are probably similar fundamental principles: power, control, understanding the needs of people?
There is a correlation on several levels. The obvious one is, as Oscar Wilde said, "Everything is about sex, except sex; sex is about power"—and nowhere [is that] truer then in S&M. But on a deeper level, I've noticed being in the scene for over 25 years, that fetishes and kinks come in trends, just like fashion, music, et cetera. And these trends tend to be reactions to the social and political zeitgeist.

For example, when I got into the business in 1989 your garden variety slave was into foot worship, and cross dressing. I see this as a reaction to changing gender roles and a need to work though those issues. Then when AIDS started to affect the straight community, things like heavy medical, blood sports, and scat became popular. People were tired of "safe sex"—they wanted to do things that were dangerous and risky. They were tired of having to suit up in a latex body condom to be intimate with another human being. And now chastity is really popular. I think it's because sex is more readily available to men then ever, so they are fetishizing not having sex.

Can you describe what's in your campaign platform?
The problem with this country and, indeed the world is there are not enough women in leadership positions. Men have been in charge for the last 6,000 years and they've really fouled it up. It's time for a woman to be in charge. My platform is based on this foundation.

The first thing I'm going do after I'm sworn in is to decriminalize all consensual sex acts between adults. I will prohibit white men from holding office without permission from their Mistress. And then I'm going to institute a sexier enhanced interrogation program lead by leather-clad dominatrices incorporating teasing and denial methods to break ISIS operatives. We also need funding for scientific research into BDSM. I believe it's genetic and it's time to settle the nature vs. nurture question. Finally, I will require men to carry purses, and be fully responsible for their own keys and wallets.

How did you think of your slogan?
Oh, that was easy. It wrote itself. If Donald Trump was going to "Make America Great Again," then I was going to "Whip It Back into Shape." Beating middle-aged white men is my most well-developed skill set. That's what I've been doing for the past 25 years—and I do it well.

Who are your supporters?
Well, they say politics make strange bedfellows, and I'm no exception. I'm going to carry the millennial vote, especially hipsters that will vote for me ironically, as well as disgruntled Bernie supporters. I'll also run well with moderate Republicans who can't bring themselves to vote for Trump or Hillary. I'll likely get all of those votes. I'm also polling well in the black community, lesbian community, and of course, the kink community. [Author's note: As far as I can tell, this is unsubstantiated. Mistress Tara has not been included in any reliable polls.]

Do you think you're the most authentic candidate? All of your cards are kind of out on the table.
Without a doubt. My skeletons are all out of the closet. I'm an open book and my positions have been consistent through out my career. I say what I mean, and I mean what I say. You always know where Mistress Tara stands on any issue. Especially when she's referring to herself in the third person.

Talk to me about Donald Trump. You've had some pretty harsh things to say about him.
I think he's a needle-dicked carnival barker whose every thought and deed is [meant] to compensate for the size of his incredibly tiny micro penis. I mean really, building giant gold plated skyscraper with your name on it? If that's not overcompensating for some deeply ingrained inadequacy, I don't know what is. Even his choice of words; huge, tremendous, big—it's laughable. He wears his ties long, as if to cover his shame. The bragging, all of that, are all obvious symptoms of small penis syndrome.

One of the things I've noticed being in the sex business is [that] the men who are the pickiest about what a woman looks like are always the ones with the tiniest penises. They feel so powerless to attract a female that they'll beat up on women's looks to feel better about themselves. Just like Trump's statement "It's very hard to be a 10 without having big boobs."That's typical of a man who is very insecure about his own body.

From what you know about Trump, can you guess what his fetishes might be? What do you think he's in to?
I'd peg him as a human toilet. People are almost always the opposite in scene [BDSM roleplay] as they are in their everyday lives. So much shit comes out of his mouth, it'd only be natural that he'd want to put some of that shit back into it.

Who would you pick to be your vice president?
That's been a very tough decision. I had some incredible people on my short list: Mistress Snow Mercy is a scientist and would have been incredibly helpful on global warming issues; Mistress Genevieve would have helped me lock up the South. And more recently I was considering George Takei, but after a lot of deliberation I realized I had to stay true to my party and pick a woman for VP. And that woman is Wanda Sykes. She's tough, dedicated, and takes no prisoners. I'm proud to have her as my VP. [Author's Note: It is not clear if Sykes is aware of this, but I somehow doubt it.]

How can people get involved if they want to help your campaign?
Like Donald Trump, I am self-funding. Unlike Donald Trump, I am not a billionaire, so donations are greatly appreciated. People can make donations at mistresstaraforpresident.com or our Indiegogo campaign, "Dildos for Democracy."

Part of our "Dildos for Democracy" campaign is to send Donald Trump 1,000 tiny dildos. So we've have set up an Amazon Wish List for him. All you have to do is purchase a tiny dildo from the list, and it will be shipped directly to him at Trump Tower. So far, we've sent 128 but with the help of the American people, we'll send him those 1,000 tiny dildos!

Another way is to join in on our Twitter small penis humiliation campaign. Just go on Twitter and make jokes about Donald Trump's tiny, tiny penis with the hashtag #mistresstaraforpresident and you will help me defeat Trump this November.

Follow Alison Segal on Twitter.