AN OLDER WHITE WOMAN'S ANGER WITH HILLARY
by Joan Wile, Founder, Grandmothers Against the War
and author, GRANDMOTHERS AGAINST THE WAR: Getting Off Our Fannies And Standing Up For Peace," to be published by Citadel Press April 29, 2008
I have many reasons for being angry with Hillary Clinton, but one outweighs the others.
I don't like the fact that she is a hawk who morphed into a dove only because she realized it would hurt her campaign if she were perceived as being a supporter of the war in Iraq. I don't like the nasty way she trashes Obama. I don't like her transparent opportunism and heedless ambition. I don't like the thought of a co-presidency with Bill, who is not the person I thought him to be.
But, what I can't stomach most of all is the fact that after almost 400 years since slavery and the continuing racism that has permeated American life and so eaten away at our democracy, she is obstructing the potential to transcend that racism, finally, by electing a black president.
She can insist that her candidacy is breaking the glass ceiling for women, but electing a female president is not as earthshaking a precedent as having a black chief of state would be. Women are not discriminated against the way black people are. They are not called names. They are not ghettoized. They are not socially shunned in many places. Unless, of course, they are black. There is a world of difference between the discrimination accorded women and that accorded African Americans. Barack Obama's presidency would go a long, long way to changing that ugly fact of our culture.
This is what enrages me so. If she were obviously the better candidate, I would not feel this way. But, she isn't. In fact, I suspect she isn't equal to Obama when it comes to "crossing the commander in chief threshold." Why, oh why, then, does she continue this, yes, selfish quest and thereby deny us the most healing event, perhaps, in our history?
So, Hillary, I'm calling on you to put aside your out-sized ambition, your sense of entitlement, so that the United States will have this wonderful opportunity to at long last cross the racial divide in our country and, hopefully, leave it behind forever. Wouldn't that be magnificent, and wouldn't its realization compensate you for your lost dream?
Come on, girl, give it up! Let freedom ring!