We are victims of that ancient Chinese curse: “May you live in interesting times.” Its implicit sarcasm is borne out by the current state of American politics. We are in a presidential election campaign that will culminate in an election that may be the most interesting. The stakes have never been higher, the most important in American History. Our next president will confront a confounding array of issues, both domestic and foreign. We need an extraordinarily capable leader for the next four years. The choice is a no brainer.
What does it take to disqualify Trump? (Alphabetical order): Birtherism? Demagoguery? Foot-in-mouthism? Inciter of violence? Islamophobia? Mendacity? Misogyny? Mockery of disabled persons? Narcissism? Pandering? Racism? Sexism? Tax returns? Vulgarity? Xenophobia? According to his ghost autobiographer, he has a micro attention span and a hair trigger temper. Trump’s finger on the nuclear button? OMIGOD!
Trump cites his vaunted deal-making skills as evidence of qualification; he’ll deal-make America to greatness. His resume is replete with bankruptcies and lawsuits, and with vendors and employees he stiffed. He is accustomed to being the gorilla in the boardroom and getting his way. This approach won’t work in the complex arena of diplomacy.
Clinton has a realistic domestic and international agenda. And, unlike her rival, she is thoughtful and collegial. Yes, she carries baggage, though featherweight in comparison. It was unwise to speechify to Wall Streeters when she had presidential ambitions. The email contretemps resulted from carelessness; a mistake she has admitted. The Clinton Foundation should have discontinued receiving and soliciting contributions after her nomination. She relied on subordinates in Benghazi to handle a rapidly changing explosive situation.
But many who do not find these negatives disqualifying, do not support her. Why? Sexism! Clinton is an intelligent, articulate, strong woman. Many find this off-putting. They unwittingly tolerate a glass ceiling. To them, I ask, if Clinton was a man, with the same history, personality, demeanor and baggage, would you find her unacceptable as your president? Search your soul! Also, consider the alternative! Racism was subverted by the election of Obama. I trust that the American electorate similarly deal with sexism in November.