Tuesday, June 03, 2008

'What are you going to do, bleed on me?'

General online consensus this morning seems to be that Hillary Clinton has definitively lost the fight for the Democratic nomination.

Yes yes, there are all kinds of problems with Hillary. But it is still a bit sad-making, and you can't help wondering how long it will be before another woman gets a chance at the presidency. Come along, girls, back to the kitchen.

Not that she has formally withdrawn, of course; as ever, her demeanour is that of the Black Knight.

6 comments:

Barry Leiba said...

I don't think it's a dichotomy between being PotUS and going "back to the kitchen". Senator Clinton is a US Senator and a woman of some significant influence. She's also the first candidate to get as far as she has, even remotely so (Elizabeth Dole dropped out quite early, in the 2000 election, and no one else has even made a real try in a major party). If she's not involved in the presidential administration of 2009, she'll not head for the kitchen. She'll go back to the Senate, and possibly head for the presidency again in 2012 or 2016.

I do wish we wouldn't worry so about the demographic aspects of our presidential candidates. See my comments on that, in these three posts:
http://staringatemptypages.blogspot.com/2008/04/racy-race.html
http://staringatemptypages.blogspot.com/2007/07/imperialism-and-what-we-want-in.html
http://staringatemptypages.blogspot.com/2008/01/plurality.html

So it's clearly true that we're still sexist about the presidency, at least in the US (and Australia hasn't had a woman heading government yet either, though the UK and Canada have, along with Chile, Germany, Israel, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, and the Philippines, to name a few). But it's also true that we're getting somewhere, if more slowly than you or I would like. If Senator Clinton doesn't win this time (and I actually have a small preference for Senator Obama, myself, having nothing whatever to do with sex or race), she won't be saying, "Aw, well, it's useless," and neither should we.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Sorry, Barry, those links don't work.

I didn't mean 'Back to the kitchen' literally, of course, only that it feels generally like a defeat and a backward step for women. (For what it's worth I too in fact have a slight preference for Obama -- though naturally my stake in the result, while not nonexistent since of course what happens in the US will affect the rest of us, is far less than yours.)

You appear to be a white American man and therefore a member of the single most powerful demographic in the world. That's a position from which it's very easy to say the rest of us should ignore race, gender and other identity markers.

CelloBella said...

hehe black knight comment is SO apt.
:)

As for being sexist about the presidency... well I too have a preference for Obama mainly because of Clinton's attitude to the gun lobby (mind you I'm not sure what BO's opinion is)...

Still I know what you mean... it seemed such a step forward because on social issues the US seems so backward at times... look at their medical system for example...

Lucy Sussex said...

Julius Vogel's C19th Utopia ANNO DOMINI 2000 had a female president of the US at that date--a Mrs Washington-Lawrence, with a teenage daughter and no visible spouse. Sigh.

Barry Leiba said...

«Sorry, Barry, those links don't work.»

Hm, odd... I just clicked on them now, and they worked for me. Oh, well.

«You appear to be a white American man and therefore a member of the single most powerful demographic in the world.»

Guil-cup. Um, I mean, yes, I am.

«That's a position from which it's very easy to say the rest of us should ignore race, gender and other identity markers.»

But I'm not saying that. I'm saying that I wish it were that way, but I know and acknowledge that its not. Sigh.

I'm saying that progress has been made, and continues to be made. I'm saying that it's way too slow — I actually think the world would be a better place if it were run by women. I'd like the progress to be faster, but slow progress is better than none.

I don't (and, OK, this is from my white American male PoV) look at Mrs Clinton's failure (by oh, so small a margin) to win the nomination as a backward step... but as a pause in a huge forward step. And the next stride is forthcoming.

Barry Leiba said...

Oh, and cellobella: Yes. Just look at our medical system. Sigh. And that's one area where Senator Clinton has a better plan than Senator Obama does — I think his is completely wrong. Hers isn't right either, but it's better.

How does Australia's medical system differ from the UK's? I think I know how the UK's system works, at least passably well. And I'd rather have that than what we have here in the U.S.

But, then, I'd rather have the health care system of nearly any other developed country than what we have here in the U.S.