Saturday, April 14, 2007

On Hillary...

I have to say that I have been less willing to jump on the anti-Hillary bandwagon than my personal politics might suggest.

As the daughter of a strident feminist who always out-earned my father, who was part of that first generation of women in corporate America, and whose glass-ceiling battles were often keenly felt over the dinner table, I find myself casting a forgiving and hopeful eye on Ms. Rodham Clinton.

Anyway, I found this article in the New York Times on Hillary's Wellesley class absolutely fascinating.

I agree with one of her classmates, who says that she has "always felt that the way [Hillary] is singled out and attacked is very indicative of how society reacts to smart women.”

While I do think the liberal left has valid criticisms of Hillary that fall outside that construct, I think her classmates' justification (the inevitabilities of her life in the public eye) of some of her behavior makes sense, and I hope their predictions about the future of her campaign are accurate (that she will become more relaxed and more bold, etc).

Because truth be told, I really want to like Hillary Clinton.

With Obama, as I did with Howard Dean, I find myself very suspicious of this "golden boy" status thing he has going on. I suspect that if we scrutinized Obama as Hillary has been, we would find the same shrewdness and yes, politic that Hillary is criticized for. Certainly, I think Dean's position at the helm of the DNC has demonstrated that not only does he lack the political fortitute required for the presidency, he's hardly liberal America's bellwether.

I guess I take some comfort in her classmates' assertions (even the one purporting to be a Republican) that she was brilliant, charismatic, and "way off the charts in being engaged in her community and in the world, taking personally what was happening and wanting to do something about it.”

Compared with the LA Times' somewhat troubling article about Obama's time at Occidental College, which he attended because he 'met a girl' and then transferred to Columbia. I found it so trouble that I remembered the article from almost 2 months ago and successfully located it for you just now. Why I found it so troubling I don't really know, except that I felt like like it perhaps indicated that Obama has somewhat of an obsession with bettering his status in a relatively unsavory way.

If how one's classmates remember you is any indication of your value, then certainly, Hillary's the one. I admit that the Obama article is far more cursory than the Hillary one. Still, I think I'd rather know college Hillary than college Obama.

Not that I'm opposed to Obama by any means, but I doubt he's our salvation, or that he's even more genuine or ethical than Hillary.

Point being, I remain open to the possibility of voting for Hillary, and that NYT article is interesting.

1 comment:

michael said...

Earlier today I had a clearly strong feeling that she's going to be the victor.

Since she has to consult with her advisors on nearly every hot-button question (especially Gay Rights issues), I don't particularly see myself or any other queer voters becoming energized about her. She's too safe, calculating indeed.