I have recently been observing, and sometimes participating in, a blog at the Spokesman-Review website, http://www.spokesmanreview.com/blogs/hbo/. The discussions get very intense and political and sometimes out of my league, hence the observing. But every now and then, I am stirred by the topic.
Of course, lately it has been Hillary Clinton. First - I have no particular party affiliation. I go with my heart and my head; I study each candidate and form my opinion based on fairly intricate research. But Hillary Clinton? uh, no.
The statement was heard at a caucus meeting recently by a proponent of Hillary: "I think she should be nominated because she's a woman." And more than likely, someone at another caucus table said similar words about Borak Obama, that he should be nominated because he is black.
This shows a serious lack of intelligence on the speaker's part. It shouldn't matter one whit whether the candidate is a woman or black or Chinese or fill-in-the-blank. What should matter is that person's credentials. How will that person perform as President of the United States? The highest job in the country. The most sensitive, critical position in America. What is that person's history and how does that person's resume read? Education? Voting record? Does that person mirror your views? For instance, both candidates are favorable towards stem cell therapy and research; as a person facing the possibility of a kidney transplant, that issue is close to my heart. It doesn't take a "woman" or someone who is "black" to go to bat for me.
Not only does this person make decisions that can send us to war, but this person is on a pedestal for the entire world to observe. What is going to be the first impression of the rest of the world? How will other government leaders accept what our candidate has to offer?
How will a new president heal our nation that has suffered horrific terrorist attacks and the outrageous death toll of our young people serving in Iraq, Afghanistan?
The president needs to be a person of high ideals and integrity, with an inner strength and poise. I do not see H Clinton and integrity in the same sentence. When a candidate starts doing the "bash the opponent" thing, my ears close up. I don't hear that person anymore and they have just fallen off my radar - I focus on the other person. A person who lowers themself to the level of sniping at the opponent, dredging up gossip and portraying it as fact, attacking them for a middle name (come on!), or drums up a tawdry tidbit from the other's past, is no longer portraying the image of what I want in my President.
I am seeking a President that embodies professionalism, integrity, compassion, intelligence. And you will note that I didn't just describe Hillary Clinton.
As a woman in my late 50s, I have been right smack in the middle of the growing independence of women. We have made great strides over the years. We no longer have a glass ceiling. Most of my friends are the sole wage earners in their families, while the husband stays at home. I am pleased and kind of embarrassed when a man opens a door for me - but I don't get on a platform and brow beat him with my burned bra until he opens the door.
Women's liberation does not mean we must have a woman in the presidency but it is definitely in our future. Voting for a woman for the sake of "making history" is just plain stupid.