Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Why Hillary Fans Choose McCain over Cynthia McKinney

Last night, Hillary delivered one of her best-read speeches (certainly better than her “I don’t feel no ways tired” gaff). She spent 85% of the time reminding folks of why she is great. The reminder of the time she said she supported Obama….but she didn’t tell her fans that she was just doing campaign jousting when she said Obama was not ready to lead. She didn’t tell her fans in specific terms why Obama is the best candidate.

Lacking a clear message from Hillary on what Obama can do for them, die-hard female Hillary supporters continue to threaten that since they can’t put their woman into the White House, then they will either not vote at all, or they will vote for McCain. In voting for McCain, they eschew what Hillary believed in (women’s rights/choice, reduction of global warming, going green/ebbing global warming, a sane Supreme Court pick, ending the war…). Why would they, quite literally, sell their souls?

Suffragists Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton may give use a clue. Anthony and Stanton gave lip-service to the abolitionist movement… that is, until Black men earned the right to vote ahead of White women. Seeing Black men’s advancement as a challenge (sound familiar?), Anthony and Stanton hooked up with the notorious racist newspaper publisher George Train, and begin circulating their own (White) women ‘right to vote’ appeals while throwing Blacks under the bus. For example, Stanton pointedly declared of Blacks, "Sambo and Dinah" are not fit to share citizenship with "the Daughters of Jefferson and Washington.” Anthony, on the other hand, remained silent when asked to speak out against the lynching of Blacks.

The racial divide among feminists have been well-documented. Lani Guinier asked, “Why not come together around concrete proposals to better the lives of poor and working-class women, rather than merely championing the stepping stones to which many college-educated professional women now feel entitled? From the proliferation of HIV among black women to the double bind of work and family faced by all women, it is time for a women's agenda that enlists support from all classes, all races and from men as well as women.”

The root of resistance is obvious--the poor, working-class, and the sick are seemingly not part of the agenda for Hillary supporters.

This is all clearly about race and not really about womanhood, or else these women would not threaten to withhold their votes entirely. Because, there IS a woman running for President…Cynthia McKinney. And, McKinney has chosen as her running-mate Rosa Clemente. These Sisters are saying interesting things about women’s rights, the war, multi-racial coalitions, the Patriot Act, and even hip hop. Heck, if Hillary supporters turned their attention to McKinney/Clemente instead of McCain, then they could prove Amari Baraka wrong…their run is not an “empty gesture.”

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