When I first saw a link to the Trump dating website on Reddit, I jokingly sent the link to my friend suggesting it may be a new place to try after a string of bad Tinder dates. But then I got a little Trump-curious. What kinds of alt-right, Trump-loving nutjobs would actually use such a site?
After creating a free firstname.lastname@example.org email address, Amber Gris was born. I headed over to Trump.Dating, where their homepage reads “Find the America First Partner of Your Dreams.” The website offers two choices when signing up: straight male and straight female. I suppose they’re trying to bypass any confusion about their MAGA message. I am not either of those, but I selected straight female because I was no longer myself, I was Amber.
Born in 1990, Amber loves God, her family, and her country. “I’m just lookin for a nice guy who has the same values as me,” her introduction reads. Her idea of a perfect first date? “Just be a gentleman!” Channeling the energy of a blonde 27-year-old who loves Trump, I filled out the rest of her profile. The question of race got very specific, which is something the website has been criticized for since its inception. They offer options such as Scandinavian, Eastern or Western European, and Mediterranean. Again it was made clear where Trump.Dating believes their target demographic’s interests lie.
Then the messages started rolling in. I am not willing to give the group who created this website a dime, which is the only way I would be able to read the messages I have received, but I can tell you about the men who sent them. SensualPatriot is 34 and from Fairfax Virginia. “I am a motivated patriotic American looking for an equally patriotic and motivated woman who wants a companion and partner in crime in MAGA.” I wish I could ask him what sort of sensual patriotic things he would like to do. Make love while watching Fox and Friends? A girl can dream.
Navigating the messages and “winks” I received on the site, it’s hard to tell who is serious and who isn’t. It got me thinking that I can’t be the only liberal sticking her toe into a sea of Trumpians just to test the waters. One of the men listed his political views as liberal. All but one listed their race as white/caucasian. But looking at their profiles, a lot of them seemed real, and everyone who messaged me was dedicated enough to pay $24.99 a month to send that message.
In an amusing move, an opposing website has popped up as well. NeverTrump.Dating looks like a less divisive clone of Trump.Dating, allowing users to choose sexual orientations including bisexual and lesbian/gay. Could I “discover love, romance, and friendship on the world’s premiere dating network”? For very important, journalistic reasons I decided to make a profile.
Using Amber’s email address I tried to sign up, but to no avail – the email address was already in use. That’s strange that the fake email address I just created is in use by this website that just went live a few days ago. So, I attempted to login with my Trump.Dating credentials. Success. There was Amber’s profile, along with all the messages and winks I had received.
So, that explains why NeverTrump.Dating looks like a clone of Trump.Dating. That also explains why people with liberal political views were messaging me on Trump.Dating – it’s different branding on the same database of people.
Which brings me to the creators motivations. Both these websites were clearly thrown together as quickly as possible. So quickly in fact that the original image on the homepage of Trump.Dating featured a convicted child sex offender. These websites are a cash cow for the creators who are capitalizing on America’s highly divided political climate.