Monday, March 24, 2008

The Trouble with Hillary Clinton

Note: This is Jess's opinion, not Josh's. Josh, in fact, endorses Hillz for Prez. Different strokes, folks.
I'm so conflicted over that bitch Hillary Clinton. As a neo-feminist/feminist/whatever the fuck I am these days that allows me to love my vagina and think girls should have lots of sex and be self-confident, you'd think I'd automatically support her just because we have the same ladyparts. But that's not the case. And here's why.

If we're going to get really technical, the true feminist wouldn't support Clinton simply because she's a woman. The true feminist would hold Clinton to the same standards as her male opponents, (and call her Clinton, not Hillary, fyi!) and make political decisions based on her background and goals for the country, not on the basis that she has a vagina. So all of the women out there who are supporting Clinton because they think it's time for a woman president are really setting us all back; if you support Clinton because you think she'd make a better president than Obama or McCain, then so be it. But if you support her simply because you're a woman and you are trying to perpetuate this idea spearheaded by Pelosi that women should be elected simply because they're women, well, then you're kind of the anti-feminist.

And even further than that is the fact that, if Clinton is elected and she does the poor job she will almost certainly do (in my humble opinion, of course), then we won't get to see another female president for a long, long time.

Of course I love the fact that a woman is a primary contender in this election. And I appreciate that women are doing their best to try to snatch (PUN!) the power from their male counterparts. But besides the fact that the Clintons are kind of a dynasty and we Americans should inherently hate dynasties considering this country was founded on anti-dynastical thinking, Clinton just doesn't have the clout in my mind to make it as the first woman president. She is a disappointing contender for this role, too; I don't like her in the same way I don't like McCain. It has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with policy.

So the next time you run into a woman who claims she's voting for Clinton (who, like all those fucking newscasters in medialand, will probably sexistly refer to her as Hillary) because she's supporting the idea of women in power, tell her Jess says she's wrong. And then direct her to this website. Girlfriend could learn a few things from it.

P.S. Thanks to Marshall and Mazi for helping me flesh out these ideas last night.


A.K. said...

Note (prob just to marshall): I don’t support Hilary

As much as I agree that a vote should be based on a candidate’s policy, it’s just not going to happen -- if that was the case we wouldn’t have been taught about the Nixon-Kennedy Debate every other year and watch our 45 yr old teacher go off on a tangent about how much every woman wanted JFK. Candidates spend millions and countless hours at a chance to appeal to voters…we know their favorite tv shows, hometowns, past drug use b/c regardless of their policy they need to forge a connection w/us to receive our vote.

Yes, a true feminist should not base his or her decision on the candidate’s gender, but the same could be said for anyone in favor of racial equality in regards to Obama. If Clinton does a poor job then we may not see another female in the White House for years, but the same could also be said about a minority and Obama. If she is successful, however, there will be most likely less emphasis on the sex of future candidates -- once you’re no longer the first we tend to not hype it up as much.

I do disagree though about believing a female should not let Clinton’s sex affect their vote. I don’t think it should be their primary reason, but it does make sense. Being female is part of Clinton’s identity, which will in the long run affect her policy while in office. Obviously a lot has changed in the past century, but there is still a gender bias and representation is essential for change. It’s your vote and you’re allowed to be selfish – if you believe the government should be spending more on breast cancer research and less on heart disease, then you might want another female in power.

I know you’re half-joking about the dynasty thing, but should I not watch the hills tonight because I also watch other channels owned by Viacom like vh1 and comedy central? And if Flava taught us anything, it’s that the American people LOVE watching the same people over and over and over again.

Jess and Josh said...

you're right, i was joking about the dynasty.

my point here wasn't to support obama. all i was arguing is that people should not vote for hillary SOLELY on gender; that does not mean it doesn't factor in at all. my point was simply that women, especially feminists, should consider her other qualities before pressing that button. i wrote this because people frequently react with, "but you're a feminist! and you're not voting for hillary?" and this is my response as to why.

and as for the fact that they try to appeal to voters - ok but i disagree with EVERYONE on that. i don't care who obama wants to win in the final four tournament, i want to know if he's going to bring our troops home from war.