I swore this year I would not post heavily on political matters. My friends know my politics and I’m not likely to sway anyone of a different mind. So why state my opinion? There is one important reason: I want to go on record as standing for what I believe. So, feel free to ignore this post if you are apolitical. Also, be aware that I am not going to engage with any who feel the need to comment on this. I am simply stating my position on my own page and blog.
I am old enough to have been denied equal access to educational coursework in a public high school due to my gender. That same high school had a whole building for boys’ sports and lockers while the girls had the basement. I am old enough to have been let go from a desk job because I was pregnant. I once worked in an office at a newspaper that had only a men’s room because the editor did not believe women should be reporters. I had one friend who had a back-alley abortion. I don’t take women’s rights for granted. My mother’s generation fought and bled for them and my generation has had to fight to keep them. I am old enough to know we could lose these hard-won rights. As a mother to two women and as a grandmother to two more, I always keep this in mind while voting.
That alone would lead me to vote for Hillary and for blue down-ticket. But there is more.
I have never bought the narrative that Hillary Clinton is dishonest, a liar, or some master manipulator. I have followed her career closely and she has been vilified at every turn for daring to be a strong woman in a man’s world. When she was first lady and worked for healthcare reform, she secured her fate as a hated feminist. I remember pundits saying she was trying to break the traditional role of first lady and she should go read to children at a hospital or something similar. But, she managed to get healthcare through for children. She was placed in a losing position as the wife of a cheater. Had she left him, she would have “broken her marriage vows” and “been unforgiving.” As it was, she stayed and has suffered, not for her own misdeeds, but for her husband’s!
Is she flawless? Of course not. No one is. She has played the political game better than most. What has caught her up has not been actual misdeeds, but her assumption that she would be given the same leeway as her male counterparts. In her long and public career, she has put up with innuendos and investigations that have never led to an indictment, much less a conviction. Despite this, the men (mostly) doing these investigations have felt free to not only censure her, pontificate on small points, and pass their own personal judgments, but have lied and in at least one, case fabricated so-called evidence against her. Her patience in the face of this will go down in history.
She is not the lesser of two evils. I reject that completely. She is competent. She is experienced. She is a leader by temperament. Yes, she is a politician. So is Chris Christy, Newt Gingrich, and dozens of others much more soiled by their involvement in politics than she. Yet somehow they come back like bad pennies after proven misdeeds while she is expected to dissolve due to innuendo. Nope. It’s a level playing field. If there’s dirt on it let’s do something about that instead of imputing dirt onto a relatively clean candidate just so she doesn’t outshine the boys.
Also, I compare her to her rival. As a female, I am offended by Trump’s words about females. As a human, I am offended by his words about minorities and the disabled. As a supporter of veterans, I am aghast at his behavior toward veterans and the Gold Star family he mocked. As someone who follows politics and reads the fact-checkers, I am appalled at his daily lies; even when confronted with taped proof of what he has said his denials are epic. His immoderate comments on nuclear weapon use is chilling. His supporters include North Korea and the KKK. A person is known by the company he does not disavow.
I believe that he is so unprepared for the presidency that were he to be elected, he would have to be controlled by others. This, too, is chilling.
If Hillary – or any woman – had the personal past that Trump owns with boastful bravado, she would be vilified and ridiculed, not embraced by the religious as he is. That also extends to the spouses. Hillary has not said a single word against Trump’s wife for her nude modeling or her uncertain work status as a new immigrant, but Trump has made much political hay from Bill’s past misdeeds and even from the misdeeds of the spouse of one of her aides.
There’s also policy. I believe in separation of church and state. I believe in equal rights for all. I believe in science and climate change. I want my granddaughters to never worry about their reproductive choices being stripped from them by politicians. I want to ratify the ERA. I want sensible gun legislation and reasonable immigration reform. I want economic reform that does not try to balance the budget on the backs of those who can least afford it. I don’t want to make America great again; I want to make it greater than it is today.
Hillary is a well-qualified candidate and Trump is not. So, I’m with HER and I’m proud of it.