Sunday, June 01, 2008
I spent a good portion of the day yesterday watching the Democratic National Committee try to sort this whole Florida/Michigan voting mess out, a spectacle that made me want to flush my eyes with lye and put yarn needles in my ears.
And one thing that has become increasingly clear to me: I am both in awe and in horror of Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Hillary: The Agony
The horror is obvious. After two Republican terms that nearly gutted this country, the fact that she would rather risk another by eating into the Democrats' campaigning time and splitting the vote is unforgivable. Related to this is that she has done more (purposely or not) to highlight race and polarize the voters accordingly than anything that the Republicans would dare to do.
Another horror, at least to me, is that this is our most viable female candidate for President to date. Great. And she's trying to make this about "women's suffrage" (when she isn't trying to make it about those "hardworking people, white people").
Hillary: The Ecstasy
But honestly, I'm totally in awe of her as well. Not even in a sarcastic way.
She is so over-the-top in focus, so seemingly bulletproof to the massive amounts of criticism thrown her way, so singlemindedly determined to become president...that it is, all the damage to the rest of the country aside, kind of impressive. It's like Terminator.
I mean, she is going after her dream -- NO MATTER WHAT!
It seems hopeless for her -- but she's moving forward to the bitter end, unwilling to accept defeat.
"Never say die, honey."
Isn't she simply doing what those self-help books and common parental wisdom everywhere have extolled for just about forever?
"Don't give up on your dreams."
"Just do the best you can and don't give up."
"If you can dream it, you can be it."
"It's always darkest before the dawn."
"Little train that could; choochoochoochoo..."
Hillary: Escape From The Death Star
But, wouldn't we want a president that fights so passionately and without yield? If we were in a war, would we want the president that considers both sides of the argument and concedes that we might lose, or the one that megalomaniacally pursues our nation's victory at all costs and by any and all means at our disposal?
Or would she, in the heat of battle, jet like Darth Vader at the end of Episode Four, pull out from the Death Star as the credits rolled?
Great Women (and Men) In Popular Culture
Whatever the case, I would not count Hillary out until not only the official Democratic candidate has been selected, but she has ceased her legal appeals as well. It's like Michael Myers at the end of those "Halloween" movies, how you think he's dead but then he comes back, jumps out, reappears, revives.
And yeah, in spite of everything, I still think if Hillary was a man she wouldn't be as hated. I mean, pop-culture seems to think people like Donald Trump are adorable. Who are our female Donald Trumps? Martha Stewart? We know what happened to her.
Oprah? If Oprah didn't have her warm-and-fuzzy approach (and a helpful monthly magazine chock full of tips on how I can love myself more), would she be as hated as Hillary? And she still has been attacked in the media as of late, amid speculation that her "empire is over."
That is why I would like to opt-out of the gender thing and be hated solely based on my own merit.
Postscript: I love Donna Brazile: can she run for something?
Brazile on the Colbert Report:
"Look, I'm a woman, so I like Hillary. I'm black; I like Obama. But I'm also grumpy, so I like John McCain."
And more recently:
"I have pissed off just about every state in my career."
"My momma taught me to play by the rules."