Despite the fact that, on the whole, I would prefer to see Barack Obama win the Democratic nomination to the Presidency than Hillary Clinton, I’ve tried on this blog to be reasonably evenhanded towards Hillary, whom I believed would make a decent President, all things considered. Yes, I just made fun of the whole Bosnia “misspeaking” thing, but come on – that video is pretty goddamned funny, and the fact that Sinbad was there (and has issued a statement saying Hillary was full of crap about the trip) only makes it funnier. I mean, come on. Sinbad. But in any case, I’ve said repeatedly she would make a decent President.
Well, fuck that. No more suggesting Hillary is a good or even acceptable candidate. You do not get to practice base gutter politics of this sort and still be considered “one of the good guys.” It’s not Barack Obama’s fault that entirely reasonable criticism of his health care plan hasn’t worked as a political tactic for Hillary. It’s not Barack Obama’s fault that the media has made sexist comments about Clinton, just as it isn’t Clinton’s fault that the media reminded everybody that they are White Privilege Central when it comes to racial issues over the past week.
Jeremiah Wright occasionally says passionate things. He is a preacher. Preachers do not speak in gentle, conciliatory tones all that often; it is not a job that requires one hundred percent temperance, after all. But accusing Jeremiah Wright of being a racist based on one ten-second snippet of video taken out of context from a twenty-minute sermon, claiming that said ten seconds is representative of twenty years of preaching? (Bear in mind the church is one of the largest mixed-race churches in America, so if Jeremiah Wright is a racist then a lot of his flock are self-hating whiteys.) Lest we forget, he’s also a former decorated Marine. If occasionally he gets pissed off at America for treating black people poorly – well, tough. Black people are officially allowed to have complex feelings about America. They get permission. Deal with it.
Hillary knows this. The Clintons invited Wright to the White House in 1998 and on several other occasions. Her own minister today issued a letter stating that Wright is a good guy and that the controversy is simply people taking him massively out of context and assuming that to be the sum and total of his message. Since we know that Hillary Clinton is not ignorant of the actual nature of Jeremiah Wright, that forces one to conclude that she is simply being disingenuous.
And “disingenuous” is by far too gentle a word to describe this tactic, born of desperation as her campaign flounders, as Obama regains his massive lead in North Carolina and slight lead in Indiana, and even slightly closes up a bit in Pennsylvania (which he will not win, but). It is base and crude and mean and dishonest and it stinks. It is the type of cheap political gambit one would expect from Karl Rove.
And that is why Hillary Clinton should not be President.