Suzanne Reisman at Blogher wrote a piece on a bumper sticker she saw:
Elect Women for a Change
I can appreciate a catchy or witty turn of phrase as much as the next person, but I tend to agree with her that this makes a pretty sweeping generalization that does a great disservice to women, or rather to exceptional women really working to make a change.
I do believe that Hillary is exceptional, but I also believe that she is making concessions and compromises in her bid to get to where she wants to be. And this reality leads me to a place of confusion. I know that Hillary could be great. I know that she could speak for a lot of us who feel that past administrations have not spoken for us, or rather they have, but they have not done what we wanted. They have spoken over us. The thing is, I don’t know that anyone can actually walk the walk when they get into office.
So do I support Hillary? Yes, I think I do. But do I support her for who and what she is or for who and what she isn’t? Do I think Obama might have an easier time getting things done because he won’t be fighting the ghosts of how he did or didn’t deal with infidelity? Because he won’t be the first female president? Because he isn’t hated because of bullshit political ignorance? Yes. But then he would be the first black president. He would be the man who kept a woman from being elected. Are we already doomed to have these two cancel each other out?
In 1984 I thought a female vice president would be incredible. Now I just think someone without a hair trigger temper would be ideal. Someone who would focus on the things that have our nation crumbling in on itself. Do we have to be a super power? Can we feed our kids? Provide health care to everyone? Can we try and protect the earth?
I am so torn. Part of me wants to check out and not be disappointed. Not be vilified for thinking a certain way. But I am a mom. I have a future generation to consider. How could I consider having another child when I am not spending every last bit of energy to ensure the best future for the children I already have?
I want to go back to holding Briar in my lap and have dangling chads erased from history. I want to go back and have Bill never know Monica. I want Gary Hart not to go on that boat ride. I want the world to not care so much what happens when the President is at home. I want my girls to have trees to climb on, air to breathe and people to look up to. I want them to look up to people who follow the rules, people who fight for good over evil.
Clearly I want a lot of things and I am incredibly not clear how to get them.
I guess all I can do is be honest about how my participation or my lack of participation contributes to the cycle of getting away from what’s really important.
Today I am just glad that Hillary is participating.