Copyright © 2008 Henrietta W. Hay
Is This Senator Clinton's Moment?
March 7, 2008
Sexism is alive and well in American politics. After 250 years of strictly male government, the 2008 presidential election offers an opportunity for real social progress.
We have a female candidate for President, one who is intelligent, competent experienced and dedicated.
There are, of course valid reasons for choosing not to vote for Senator Hillary Clinton, but the fact that she is a woman is definitely NOT one of them.
American Presidential elections have seldom been peaceful. In the early days they occasionally ended with duels.
But this one started so early that each group of states having primaries or caucuses at the same time has created what feels like a series of national elections. The whole thing has been sexist and bitter. And has gone on much too long..
But it was Nirvana for the media. Television, radio and the Web dived in with enthusiasm. The talking heads anointed Senator Barok Obama as President very early. Then came New Hampshire, and they had to regroup. That didn't take long. The favorable stories were almost always about Obama. The stories about Clinton nearly always had a negative twist.
And then there was the Angry White Man with an article in a local newspaper. He ranted and raved about how he is being belittled and mistreated. Poor baby! I had a problem deciding whether he was serious or a skillful satirist. Surely no modern man would write something that stupid.
I am convinced that we Democrats have two excellent candidates. Either of them would make a fine President. But I did think - well, hope - that we had matured a little more as a nation. It is now obvious that we still have people who would not vote for a woman for office if she were the Virgin Mary.
I have been an admirer of Hillary Rodham Clinton since she became First Lady. Here was a president's
wife who is intelligent, well educated, and confident. And she was willing to stick her neck out and never hesitate to try to use her influence to improve the lives of children. She was a strong advocate of women's rights.
The last First Lady like that was Eleanor Roosevelt, and look at the criticism she faced. My mother couldn't stand her. But she has been another of my heroines.
Hillary Rodham was a leader through High School, college years at Wellesley and Yale Law School.
Speaking at graduation from Wellesley she said, "The challenge now is to practice politics as the art of making what appears to be impossible, possible."
On graduation she he chose to work in public service.
She and Bill Clinton were married and soon she became First Lady of Arkansas.
Her years as First Lady of the United States are well documented.
She served two very successful terms as United States Senator
When she speaks of experience, she knows what she is talking about.
She has been the object of far more criticism than most women in government or anywhere.
She was married to Bill, whom many people still hate. Her husband was unfaithful and she did not divorce him. Hmmm, think how many millions of American women would be disqualified for office by this.
She is a strong woman, and a very warm one according to those who know her personally. And she is tough.
I am writing this before the Texas and Ohio primaries and do not know how they will come out.
I hope she will win the nomination, but whichever way it goes, I am convinced she will continue to serve the United States in some capacity.
It's time, however, for us to have a woman President.