As a feminist, I truly believe that women are just like men in the most important ways–for better or for worse. Of course, I’m not saying men and women are the same–but then again, not all women are the same, just as much as not all men are the same. The reality is that we are nothing more than just an aggregate mass of individuals with overlapping similarities and superficial differences. Despite this fact, identity politics often trumps substance, to the detriment of American democracy (at least what little is left of it these days).
While I’d like to see a female American president, I’m certainly not desperate for one. Not just any woman will do, after all. This is why I will never vote for Hillary Clinton. She’s a terrible candidate for many legitimate reasons, and I think it’s a shame that she’s the only female presidential candidate the Democrats have on offer. I suppose I could get excited behind an Elizabeth Warren candidacy, but she’s yet to finish her first Senate term.
But the real question is: would a Hillary Clinton presidency be a good thing for America?
As Bloodthirsty As Any Chicken Hawk
Hillary Clinton certainly won’t let her gender get in the way of her warmongering. Who needs peace when you can act tough and send other people’s children to die in ill advised foreign adventures? Peace and diplomacy is clearly not her priority, as evidenced by her support for:
- the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia
- the invasion of Iraq
- the violent ouster of Libya’s Moammar Kadhafi
- the attempted destabilization of Syria
- the “containment” of Russia by financing and arming Ukraine
Journalist Glenn Greenwald said it best, describing Hillary Clinton as:
“…banal, corrupted, drained of vibrancy and passion. I mean, she’s been around forever, the Clinton circle. She’s a fucking hawk and like a neocon, practically. She’s surrounded by all these sleazy money types who are just corrupting everything everywhere. But she’s going to be the first female president, and women in America are going to be completely invested in her candidacy. Opposition to her is going to be depicted as misogynistic, like opposition to Obama has been depicted as racist. It’s going to be this completely symbolic messaging that’s going to overshadow the fact that she’ll do nothing but continue everything in pursuit of her own power. They’ll probably have a gay person after Hillary who’s just going to do the same thing.”
On foreign policy, Clinton is actually to the right of Barack Obama. As arrogant and reckless as the Obama Administration may be in the international arena, a Clinton administration would probably be a whole lot worse. In light of her hard line against Russia and her sophomoric efforts at “diplomacy” (by comparing Putin to Hitler, no less), nuclear war could very well become a dreadful inevitability. Potential mushroom clouds are sure to figure prominently in the geopolitical weather forecast should a Clinton presidency come to pass.
Nothing To Offer The Average Woman, Much Less The Average Man
Hazy promises of a better tomorrow worked for the Obama campaign, but will they work for Clinton? It’s hard to say right now, but if Hillary’s team are as capable as Obama’s was, then the lack of a real platform shouldn’t be a problem. In her recent visit to Iowa, she carefully declared:
“We need to build the economy of tomorrow, not yesterday. We need to strengthen families and communities, because that’s where it all starts. We need to fix our dysfunctional political system and get unaccountable money out of it once and for all, even if that takes a constitutional amendment. And we need to protect our country from the threats that we see, and the ones that are on the horizon.”
Despite the nice slogans, no meaningful policy details or plans on how to achieve the aforementioned goals were revealed. The Iowa visit was simply ground zero for the launch of Hillary 2.0, the Democratic Party’s “humble, populist candidate” for 2016. Clinton has yet to explain what “the economy of tomorrow” means, and has mentioned no specific plan for strengthening families and communities. Though she’s willing to support the overturning of Citizens United by constitutional amendment, it is logistically a quixotic endeavor, given the difficulty of passing any legislation in today’s obstructionist Congress. And I’m quite curious as to how she will explain how more wars and arming more proxy armies will result in better national security.
The lack of choices in our electoral system is sickening, to say the least. I don’t really know what more to say, except that I won’t be voting in 2016 out of disgust–and I know I’m not alone. I understand my civic duty, and I believe in exercising my right to vote. I know that my forbears suffered greatly just so I can take for granted what they fought so damn hard to win. But then again, wasn’t exercising freedom of choice the whole point of fighting for the right to vote in the first place? If all the available candidates are the same, then what choice is there to exercise? Did our forbears really suffer just so we can make the same pre-approved choice as everybody else? Unfortunately for our decaying democracy, the act of voting has been unceremoniously reduced to maintaining our sentimental illusion of what we wish our country to be.