The Hillary Clinton ‘Problem’: #NowWhat

Hillary Clinton isn't perfect, but she deserves a break.

ColumnIf you want to piss off a bunch of white people—especially white dudes—have a woman on the ticket after a black man served as president for eight successful years.

Yes, Hillary Clinton is not a perfect candidate. You may even be disappointed that Clinton won the democratic party’s nomination for president of the United States. But Clinton is also quite a few other things than an imperfect white woman — all of them positive — that most of her haters seem to have conveniently forgotten since she declared she was running for president.

Before you ask: no. We aren’t trying to persuade you to vote for Clinton. But please take a moment to examine the differences between the major party candidates—because let’s be real; we’re either going to live in a Clinton or Trump America come 2017.

Clinton is a “mom” first

We love that Clinton is a mom. We’ve all got one, and good ones can be hard to find. If Chelsea’s words at the DNC were an indication of her mom’s awesomeness, well that’s nothing to avoid touting. But we also find it a little strange that Clinton is quickly becoming “candidate mom” rather than a “candidate who also is a mom.”

In past elections, plenty of men have talked at length about how they love their sons and/or daughters. But none of their campaigns have so blatantly pointed out these candidates’ fatherly tendencies.

I suspect that Clinton’s campaign team is marketing her as a mom because they fear that voters—specifically voters who have problems with women in authority positions—will have to view her as a kind, loving woman before they trust her; and we all know Clinton has some major trust issues.

But still.

Clinton is running against Trump, a candidate who hasn’t made his tax returns public, and has no problem publically disparaging the parents of an army captain who made the ultimate sacrifice for this country. We could all stand to see a more hardcore criticism of Trump from Clinton in the coming months—even if it makes some people uncomfortable. John Oliver can give her some cues.

Clinton can’t make a speech, has a public likeability problem

Hillary Clinton gave a fine speech at the DNC last week. But even Clinton has recognized in the past—and in her DNC acceptance speech—that her public persona isn’t rousing. Well, although Clinton’s speech may not have been comparable to Joe Biden, or either Obamas’ speeches, it was still moving. We’ve pulled a few concepts from Clinton’s speech to show that, yes, this candidate is totally capable of delivering an important message, and connecting with the American public.

If that’s playing the woman card, then deal me in.

Anyone who has an issue with Clinton bringing her gender into the race should reconsider their stance. No, women shouldn’t vote for Clinton just because she’s female, but everyone—men and women—should take a step back and think about how this particular fact about Clinton could help her presidency.

When any barrier is broken it makes room for all of us.

Clinton knows a lot about barriers. No matter how you slice it, women do have it more difficult than men. Clinton has most likely been paid less and has had to work harder to be taken seriously—if you don’t believe that, just watch an hour of election news coverage.

More than a few times I’ve had to pick myself up and get back in the game.

Clinton knows what it’s like to be trash-talked. Sure, every political candidate gets an ear full of negative feedback on the regular, but Clinton also has to contend with people’s thoughts on her marriage and dedication to her child, all while trying to prove she’s qualified for the job.

Clinton looks too angry, dresses weird, sounds shrill

Sure, men get criticized for this stuff, too, but damn. Clinton just can’t escape these pointless critiques.

Just this past week, TBS, the network that Samantha Bee’s show, “Full Frontal,” is on, tweeted an incredibly dumb tweet that compared Clinton’s laugh to a donkey’s bray. Well, Bee went after that tweet immediately, telling her own network to “delete your account.” Luckily, the network realized its error, but still. This type of stuff needs to stop.

Who cares if Clinton’s wardrobe isn’t to your liking? Heck, it’s hard for me to put together a unique outfit every day and I’m not on television. Give her a break.

Don’t like Clinton’s anger? Please stop. I don’t know about you, but over the past year, I’ve become increasingly angry about everything going on in the world. The world is scary, politics are scary, and this presidential election is really scary. If Clinton wasn’t angry or upset by the state of the world, I’d wonder about her.

And she’s not shrill, people. It’s hard for a woman to project her voice and be heard. And yeah, she may not be the best public speaker, but at least she can articulate her political stance to a national audience without saying anything about a stupid wall.

So, people, please. Give Clinton a break and criticize her for things that actually matter.

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Abbie Stutzer

Writer, editor, and owner of Ginchy!, a freelance writing and editing company, and home funeral hub. Adores smart sex ed, sustainable ag, spooky history, women's health, feminism, horror, wine, and sci-fi.