Bruce Parker

In Defense of Hillary Clinton

Filed By Bruce Parker | March 11, 2006 11:34 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics, The Movement
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"Over the last decades we have made some significant progress in fighting AIDS in our country. But we cannot rest until this progress reaches every corner of the globe and we are able to ensure that no matter where you live, the scourge of AIDS ceases to be the terrifying killer that it is today."

"Probably my worst quality is that I get very passionate about what I think is right."

"The challenge is to practice politics as the art of making what appears to be impossible, possible."

"What we have to do... is to find a way to celebrate our diversity and debate our differences without fracturing our communities."

"All of us have to recognize that we owe our children more than we have been giving them."

"One day after laying a wreath at the tomb of Martin Luther King Jr., President Bush appoints a federal judge who has built his career around dismantling Dr. King's legacy."

"Let's not leave an educational vacuum to be filled by religious extremists who go to families who have no other option and offer meals, housing and some form of education. If we are going to combat extremism then we must educate those very same children. "

"There is a great deal of political pressure to only talk about abstinence, and to deny support for condoms and education on using them. This policy will lead to the unnecessary deaths of many people."

- Hillary Clinton

Recently, there has been an alarming inrease of queer voices speaking out against Hillary Clinton and her possible run for President in 2008. Am I shocked? Not at all. Why would gay men who are notorious for misogynistic behavior support a woman president? The Clintons are not saints. Bill did sign into law DOMA and the Don't Ask Don't Tell Policy. I was as disapointed as everyone else was. However, we must probe deeper, we must look harder, we must turn our gaze toward our long term goals as opposed to immediate response.

Each night before bed - I cross my heart and hope that Hillary runs and wins. Having a woman president would be a transformative moment for our country and the world. Of course other liberal candidates need to be considered - however, if and when we settle for another white male liberal from an affluent family - it will be a sad day.

Let me speak as someone who has been a fan of Hillary since I was very young. She was ranked one of the hundred most influential lawyers in America prior to Bill becoming a politician. Hillary is selling out. She is taking more centrist positions. This is not a new dance and it is a dance that all democratic politicians do. However, we must dig deeper and look at the issues in a more complicated way.

The book I talk about earlier in the blog captures these arguements better than I coudl repeat here. Let me suggest you read the book as an in to the conversation.


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I agree with you Bruce. I would like to believe that Hillary can change things in this country - maybe begin to dig us out of the mess George W. put us in. We can't go on the way things are now.

Marla Randolph Stevens | March 12, 2006 6:47 AM

It's not misogyny, Bruce. The voices include lots of strong feminist lesbians', mine included. It's self-respect mixed with a loathing of DLC sell-out politics as usual.

We see in the polls a reasonable hope for better on issues of broader concern such as ShrubCo's foreign policy of perpetual war and economic policies that are turning the U.S. into a has-been.

We thus see no reason to slavishly support those like Hillary who are chasing after a dwindling right-leaning pool with things like her flag-burning amendment, muuch less those like Sen. Clinton who do not truly support us and use the selling out of our fundamental rights as leverage for their personal political gain.

Bruce, this is the second time in as many days that I've heard the mysogyny thing: why are Hillary fans to quick to jump onto that "he must be a woman-hater" argument when they meet someone (like me) who's not a Hillary fan? It's an offensive low-blow. I could come up with a list of umpteen women that I'd like to see as president, Hillary Clinton just doesn't happen to be one of them.

Your post seems to suggest that you'd vote for a candidate just BECAUSE she's a woman or BECAUSE he's not white. Before casting that vote, I hope you pay some attention to their platforms, too.

Actually, my first thought after reading Scotts statement, “To me, it couldn't be more transparent that this ‘woman’ has one agenda item (and it has nothing to do with the bettering of America). She just wants to be president.” was the same as Bruce.

My second thought was that Scott’s statement was an opposing party talking point: Hillary a, “one item agenda” (herself) candidate.

So Scott, would you care to share your list of some of the other women you’d like to see as president?

1. Ann Richards, former governor of Texas.

2. Arianna Huffington, former Republican fundraiser and current political analyst. (Foreign born, so unfortunately not eligible unless the law changes.)

3. Madeline Albright, former Secretary of State. (also foreign born I believe, but she's still on my dream list.)

4. Dianne Feinstein could be interesting.

5. Elizabeth Dole. She's a Republican, but based on her former affiliation with the Red Cross, I'd love to see her election platform.

6. I'd also like to see Vi Simpson from Indiana have a long political life.

Bruce Parker | March 12, 2006 8:46 PM

Scott,

A very interesting list. I will say its always really easy to list a number women one would like to see President particularly when none of them are even potential contenders.

Again, I see that some of Hillary's recent decisions are very surprising and potentially alarming. What I still find even more alarming is that we are adding our own voices to the voices of the Republican Party in torpedoing a candidate before a campaign has even been initiated. We are buying whole heartedly into the rhetoric.

The notion that Hillary's only goal is being president and not to better our country fascinates me. She has a long history of service and dedication to noble causes long before marrying Bill.

I also wonder how many candidates are primarily motivated by their desire to be President. As a factor that seems to be a big one.

I was in a very skeptical place about her at a moment and again read the Susan Estrich book on a whim. This book changed my mind again. Estrich's arguements are impressive, as is her other work. But, she points out that inevitably Hillary will be challenged as unelectable or motivated by self interest in a way that a male candidate will not be. This seems to be true. I can think of no candidate as long as I can remember who wasn't self interested. Its always unacceptable for women to be self interested in the same way men are.