Thursday, July 28, 2016

The biggest crack in the glass ceiling




It seems the Republicans believe they have God and the American flag on their side.  Fox picked up on the conservative blog stories claiming there were no American flags at the Democratic convention, but once this was shown to be false, went back to Monday night when a woman pastor was allegedly heckled during her opening prayer.

Monday was a rough start for the Democrats, as they had to deal with the DNC e-mail scandal and the resignation of Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, so not everyone was in a blessed mood.  A few disgruntled Berniecrats voiced their frustration throughout the day, so I doubt Rev. Cynthia Hale took it personally.  Besides, the mixture of boos and cheers were directed at Hillary Clinton not her.  Still, the conventioneers should have shown a little more decorum.

Rather than try to claim some kind of moral or patriotic superiority, the Democrats have pitched an all-inclusive God and nation, which Rev. Hale evoked in her prayer.  It's a kind of pantheism that conservatives find alarming and often equate with socialism.  They would prefer an Old Testament God that defends a chosen people, predominantly white, as Rep. Steve King pointed out to us.

Like the all white country clubs of the past, conservative theology is apparently segregated as well.  Attempts at minority outreach, which followed the Republican landslide electoral loss in 2012, have fallen to the wayside, as Trump pitches his message almost exclusively to white voters, figuring that Hillary won't inspire enough Hispanics and Blacks to make up the difference.  After all, the last several presidential elections have seen white voters favor Republican candidates, with minority voters tipping the balance in favor of Democrats.  

However, Trump has lost a lot ground among women voters, who do vote.  As a result, we are seeing a Democratic convention heavily tipped in favor of women, with men there only in supportive roles.  Bernie was even called on to nominate Hillary in a show of unity, which was met with rousing cheers from the convention on Day Two.  Hillary herself called her nomination "the biggest crack in the glass ceiling," making it clear that women were the stars of the show.

The best the Republicans could offer was Ivanka Trump telling the audience that her father stands for women and lesbians and gays.  We can only guess how Ivanka squares her own personal beliefs with that of her father and the Republican Party, as she had supported Democrats like Hillary Clinton ad Cory Booker before this election season.  But, she is the "good daughter," standing by her father's side, even if she has to cringe at some of his more outlandish statements.

The Democrats clearly represent women.  In many ways Obama was the first woman president.  He has shown a sensitivity toward women heretofore unseen in the White House.  It was for this reason that he won the women's vote (Black, White and Hispanic) both times, and also why he is a favorite on The View and other women's centered programs.  It helps when you have a strong woman like Michelle and two sharp young daughters at your side.  This is a guy who quickly learned to put the toilet seat back down.  

Such equanimity does not square well with the hard line religious view that dominates the Republican Party these days.  Sure, they respect women, but only so long as they accept the core beliefs of the Bible.  All other women are "c*nts" in their minds, which we have heard time and time again.

Hillary would be leading in the polls by 20 points if she didn't have so much baggage.  Few persons like what they heard coming out of the Republican Convention and like Trump even less.  However, Hillary has been saddled with "scandals" by the media resulting in a large segment of the public viewing her with contempt at the way she "gets away" with all this.  

You also hear a lot of persons say they want a female president but not Hillary, feeling that she is tainted goods.  It happened in 2008 and again 2016, with the Democratic Party splitting over her.  She came into both elections the prohibitive favorite, but once the media tarred and feathered her, she had to fight for each state as if it would be her last electoral victory.  

Hillary pointed to her own conservative upbringing in her biography and that she still holds onto many of these values, but you would never know it from what you read in the press.  It is clear that she has a much better understanding of the Bible than Donald Trump, and her allegiance had never been questioned before Benghazi, and then only by malcontent Republicans who hoped to stop her from running for President.

I think any woman would have suffered the same indignities, as it seems as much as Americans like to say they are ready, they still haven't quite brought themselves to accept a woman president.  Well, here she is.


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