Monday, May 05, 2008

A Feminist Explains Why She Can't Support Hillary

This is from Stephanie Salter, a columnist at the Terra Haute, Indiana Tribune-Star.

"A friend who teaches in public school here in Indiana was appalled not long ago when an e-mail from a colleague went out to everyone in the school’s cyber-address book.

The subject of the e-mail was Barack Obama and how he is “secretly” a radical Muslim bent on destroying the United States from within. A widely circulated pack of lies — e.g., he took the oath of office holding a Koran — the e-mail boasts that its contents are verifiable on the legitimate myth buster,, which is the opposite of true.

At least my teacher friend’s colleague didn’t send out one of the popular e-mails that insist Obama shows all the signs of being the antichrist.

I wish I could say I was kidding, but I can’t. I live in the United States of America — a country in which most people are alleged to be literate — and I am about to participate in a historic presidential primary. But I am starting to wonder if some of my fellow citizens have a grasp on reality, let alone the issues.

A jihadist? The antichrist? Oh, for God’s sake.Before anyone is tempted to play the region card, don’t. Indiana has no exclusive claim to people who are spending time this spring telling one another that Obama is a jihadist and/or the antichrist. Google offers about 2.25 million hits on the latter subject. (Mercifully, renunciations are part of the volume.)

...I’m a 1960s feminist who thought I would never live to see the day a woman would make a viable run at the U.S. presidency. I look at how smart, brave, tough and committed Hillary Clinton is, and I see someone who is more than capable of being commander in chief.

But one of the great things about being a feminist is knowing that liberation means searching your head, heart and gut, then acting freely on what you discover there.

Four weeks ago, I watched Clinton go for the cheap shot and turn Obama’s lengthy, measured observations about frustrated working-class Americans into Bittergate. My head, heart and gut yelled, “Blatant foul!”

Clinton chose, repeatedly, to call Obama’s remarks “elitist” and “out of touch” with ordinary Americans. She emphasized, repeatedly, that his excerpted words were made at a private fundraiser in San Francisco — as though she had never been the focus of such an event — and she encouraged her campaign operatives across the country to keep piling on.

Ignoring all the times her words and deeds have been perverted out of context by her enemies, Clinton chose to play the nasty old game in which victorious ends justify crummy means. Knowing that Americans need more division like we need more conspiracy theories, she chose to further divide.

My head, heart and mind said, “Go to Plan B. Barack Obama is smart, brave, tough, committed and capable of being commander in chief — and he struggles mightily against cheap shots to deal honestly with the complexities and contradictions of his country and its people.”

No waffles, no sexist slurs, no al Qaida, no Satan. Just a rational decision. My idea of the American Dream."


Anonymous said...

I think it's BS - I think it's possible it was a Republican who sent it.

I have a cousin in the US that liked Obama until she realized Obama is one thing when speaking and quite the opposite with the contents of his mailings - totally misleading - she changed her mind.

LeDaro said...

I believe that Clintons are carrying out a smear campaign. On the one hand they are bashing Barack Obama's pastor's missteps ( and that he attended the church for 20 years) on the other hand that he is a radical Muslim.

I had lot of respect for Clintons but lost it because of their dirty tricks.

The Mound of Sound said...

Well anonymouse you're certainly free to think as you like but, before you come to foolish conclusions, you might want to check out the Tribune's web page where you'll find the complete column. The author is an established columnist for the paper, not some Republican agitator as you would like to conclude. It sounds to me that you're one of Hillary's die hard supporters who'll stick with her no matter how fiercely she sheds her integrity and credibility. I, like many, have no use for her any longer and, according to the mainstream US media, ongoing polling shows the American voters' distrust of Hillary is steadily increasing.

I agree with LeDaro.

Anonymous said...

Well, a study has been done and proven the the 80% of media and stories have been attacking Clinton from day one. This probably the same.

I don't support either - I'm Canadian, I don't get to vote - it's up to the Americans.

I wonder if I could get my cousin to send me a copy of Obama's flyers - he's doing politics as usual.

The Mound of Sound said...

Okay anon. Now you're citing a study on media bias against Hillary "from day one." If there is such a study you'll undoubtedly be able to give us a source reference. And do you really believe, even for a minute, that Obama is outpoliticking Hillary, or should that be Billary? C'mon, get real. Hillary, "I don't know, I think he's Christian" Clinton? That's pretty rich.

Ti-Guy said...

I'm really trying to avoid the American primaries but since I'm a fan of The Daily Show I ended up being exposed to Hillary yesterday and I shuddered. Here she was, standing in the back of a pick-up truck and orating in an accent I've never heard from her before (Jon Stewart remarked on it).

It's up to the Americans to decide what to make of this, but I believe the Americans don't need the Clintons and this kind of obfuscation and pandering anymore. I'd been willing to believe the Clintons had some "secret plan" that would usher in the needed systemic adjustments to halt the perilous decline of the US once they seized power, but I don't believe that anymore. This kind of chicanery will only open the Clintons up to constant and vicious attacks by their adversaries and will result in the immobility we've seen before.