There is a story about Hillary Clinton that you might not have heard. Near the end of her first term as Senator there was a soldier named Sean. He was wounded in Iraq and had latent back problems, requiring a brace to heal properly. As a veteran Sean went to a VA hospital for care but was denied. Faced with few options, Sean was told to try soliciting the help of his Senator, Hillary Clinton. Sean placed the call and spoke to one of her aides who passed along his story. That same day, Hillary called Sean personally and spoke to him at length about his service, his problems and how she could help him. With Senator Clinton’s assistance within a month Sean had been admitted to the VA for rehab, complete with a back brace. He even got to meet her at a campaign event.
A year later, after Hillary had won the re-election, Sean was at the VA hospital for a checkup. He had successfully rehabilitated his back and no longer needed the brace. As the story goes, Sean was greeted by Hillary exclaiming “Sean! You got your brace off, you look so good!” They had not met in over a year, and neither had known the other would be there.
Now, it is entirely possible that that story is false. It is also possible that it happened but she knew he would be there, or was reminded of him by a staffer and capitalized on the moment. But what is true is that there are dozens of stories like this about Hillary. From her time as a legal aide in the 70′s all the way through today, she has been known for her random acts of kindness for strangers and going out of her way to help a person in need. A highly skeptical person may argue that every single one these stories has been fabricated by the CLINTON MACHINE to engineer a public perception more favorable to her. But I think differently. I am inclined to believe that Hillary really is a kind hearted public servant who just wants to do good in the world. And frankly, if these stories are all lies told in an attempt to make her seem more likable, it has been an immeasurable failure.
I like Hillary Clinton. I admire her hugely. I supported Bernie Sanders during the campaign, not because I disliked Hillary. My support for Bernie stemmed from a desire to push Hillary into more progressive territory than she had publicly expressed in the past. The movement to elect Bernie Sanders ended with the Democratic Party adopting the most progressive platform in the history of the United States. It showed Hillary that she need not be afraid to publicly express her true beliefs. I truly believe that she will be a great president. I think she is a kind, good natured person who has spent her life in public service for the purpose of making this world a better, more equal and more prosperous place for all. But there are many, many people who do not agree with me. There are people who truly feel in their heart that Hillary Clinton is the literal devil. A murderous pedophile who has spent 40 years selling the world a pack of lies– smearing, degrading, and manipulating all those around her in a singular, robotic march to become all consuming Dictator-in-Chief of a new United Global Illuminati. People have accused her of being a manipulative bitch, a ruthless war monger and pro-wall street demagogue who will stop at nothing until she sits on the Iron Throne.
Maybe she does have some of those qualities.
She is very clearly calculating, ruthless and arguably a bit cold. But you know what? So is literally every other elected representative in government. Why is she suddenly demonized for possessing the same skills as every other politician? It is because she is worse? Or maybe it’s just because she is a woman. Is that really so hard to believe?
Why is it easier for America to accept that Hillary Clinton is a lying, ruthless, manipulating, cold blooded murderer than it is to accept that conservatives hate her and women SO much that they have spent 30 years and billions of dollars convincing us that she is a lying, ruthless, manipulating, cold blooded murderer? After all, this is the party that has suppressed women’s access to health care, suppressed their right to maternity leave, suppressed their right to birth control, suppressed their right to fair wages and stood against their right to vote 100 years ago.This is the same conservative media that once referred to a fist bump between Brack and Michelle Obama as a “terrorist fist jab.” This is the same conservative media that likes to blame the “big bully liberal media” for the problems in this country even though Fox News controls 65% of the news watching public despite being rated as the most fundamentally dishonest and least informative news outlet. And let’s not forget that this is the same media and political party that nominated a bragging sexual monster as their choice nominee for president.
Maybe it’s possible that a vast right wing conspiracy has done such a good job for so long at altering our perception of Hillary Clinton that even when we can definitively prove she is telling the truth, we can see her as nothing but dishonest. Or maybe I am wrong and everything that has ever been said about her is true.
Imagine you are a woman. Ever since you were a little kid you knew what you wanted to do in life. You started working towards it in elementary school and then up through highschool and college and graduate school. Then you got your first job and worked your way to the top of that, and then another, and another and another. And you did every one of those jobs well and to the best of your ability. You filled every possible role along the way. Then you went to apply to the biggest job there is in your field. The absolute very top of the pyramid. You have spent 40 years working in the field, done every job there is to do, you have more skills, experience and recommendations for the job than anyone else ever in that field. And in that final moment of judgment the world tells you no, it’s still not good enough. You were a little too cold to one guy one time. They didn’t like the way you undercut this person or that person. You played the same game the men were playing only you did it too well. You made a handful of mistakes along the way because even though you are very good, you are still human with flawed judgement. Unacceptable. Sorry not sorry. How would you feel?
That is Hillary Clinton. She has managed to achieve so much in her life while still being a mother, a grandmother and Bill Clinton’s wife. Not to mention being a mega famous public figure herself with virtually no privacy — all while trying to make herself happy. All the while being told she was too ruthless, cold or calculating to do the jobs she has been doing for decades. And she has done it all despite constant humiliation in the public eye. We made her dance on Ellen, we made her rap Jay-Z, made her talk about personal likes and dislikes and then called her fake for admitting those things. We called her a panderer for liking the Yankees and the Cubs, even though she’s been a fan of both for 30 years. We made her change her hair and the color of her wardrobe to be more feminine. We made her show more emotion to seem like “more of a woman”. We made her soften her speech so she didn’t sound so “shrill”. We made her live through the nightmare of a politically motivated impeachment of her husband over extra marital affairs that she also had to deal with privately as a wife and mother. We made her re-live those worst years of her life again in 2016 when her opponent brought those women back to the forefront. We have criticized and demonized her for not being perfect, even though we have never demanded perfection from a candidate in the 240 years prior to her running. So maybe she has earned the right to be a little wary and distant from the people who ask these things of her.
That pressure would crush any man I know. And yet she perseveres. She jumps through every flaming hoop we command her to, without public complaint. How can you still believe that she does it out of an all consuming desire to become a ruthless dictator? No one that narcissistic could put themselves through what Hillary has gone through.
My mom is the hardest working person I have ever known in my life. She raised 4 children almost all by herself, starting out as a waitress with only a highschool diploma. We were poor. She gave up everything for the sake of her children and her family. But slowly over the years I have seen her educate herself and gain experience and move from one job to the next and build businesses and apply herself and move up and up and up to the point that she put all 4 children through college, all graduating in 4 years and manage to find success and manage to find personal happiness. Along the way I’ve seen her humiliated by bosses and hiring managers. I’ve seen her taken advantage of by superiors, I have seen her insulted by other parents and co-workers. I have seen her slave for hours on end in shit jobs without complaint and over the stove without getting a thank you every single time. She’s been fired, quit, rehired and transferred all because her drive to succeed was too much for the men in her field to handle without feeling emasculated because she is better than them. I’ve heard her called the same things that we have been calling Hillary Clinton for 30 years.
My mom does not like Bill Clinton. She is a conservative at heart but she values character over all else. She told me once she was going to vote for Hillary Clinton. I asked her why and she said “because no woman in any field will ever get the respect or treatment they deserve until we put a woman at the very top.” My mom speaks from experience and knows more about that than anyone, except maybe Hillary Rodham Clinton.
People say Hillary acts like she deserves the presidency. It’s because she does.