Committed leftist that he is, Peter Beinart looks at Hillary Clinton’s candidacy and sees only sexism. Similarly, when looking at Barack Obama’s presidency he sees only racism.
In his new Atlantic article Beinart lays on a rather extravagant guilt trip. If you don’t vote for Hillary you are sexist. If you did not vote for Obama and support everything he has done you are racist.
There, that’s clear, isn’t it?
You were wondering why people are angry. They are angry at being disrespected by the intelligentsia and being talked to as though they are children. Of course, many people are angry at themselves for having fallen for this cheap rhetorical trick in 2008 and 2012.
Beinart is upset that people have such a negative opinion of Hillary:
The percentage of Americans who hold a “strongly unfavorable” view of her substantially exceeds the percentage for any other Democratic nominee since 1980, when pollsters began asking the question. Antipathy to her among white men is even more unprecedented. According to the Public Religion Research Institute, 52 percent of white men hold a “very unfavorable” view of Clinton.
What is it about Hillary that turns people off? Could it be her dishonesty and her willingness to compromise state secrets—and then to lie about it repeatedly? Could it be the fact that her candidacy is based on an empty resume—a bunch of sinecure jobs and no accomplishments?
Speaking of big lies, why is this monumentally unqualified candidate is being touted as the most qualified candidate in history? If you do not believe that Hillary is qualified you are a bigot.
But, it might be that if she had not been named Clinton, no one would ever have considered her for the presidency? If she had not been female, no one would have considered her a viable candidate for much of anything.
And besides, Hillary Clinton is not only an incompetent fraud, but she clearly does not like people. Most politicians, beginning with her husband and with W, like people. Everyone who has ever listened to Hillary knows that she does not. She cackles like a witch and sounds like a shrill harpy.
In any event Beinart does not think that there is any good reason why people don’t like Hillary. Like a eunuch at the court of the Mother Goddess he is off on his own private guilt trip and wants to share it with the rest of us. He sees the hand of sexism at work, just as he sees racism in all criticism of Obama:
Over the past few years, political scientists have suggested that, counterintuitively, Barack Obama’s election may have led to greater acceptance by whites of racist rhetoric. Something similar is now happening with gender. Hillary Clinton’s candidacy is sparking the kind of sexist backlash that decades of research would predict. If she becomes president, that backlash could convulse American politics for years to come.
Funny that Beinart should mention the Obama example. The American people elected a man whose candidacy was based almost entirely on his race. If Obama had been white and had had the same track record no one would have imagined him as a potential president. Certainly, no one would have voted for him.
Since Obama’s supporters shout racism any time their hero is criticized, American political conversation had been polluted. And the nation has been divided against itself. Jeremiah Wright’s protégé has turned white against blacks, supported unpatriotic signaling, sold out American interests around the world and diminished the nation’s standing and self-esteem.
But, don’t say it, because then you are racist. And we do not want to consider that we were all conned into elevating someone who was in no way qualified for the job.
It’s not so much that Obama’s presidency provoked a wave of racism. Most people greeted his presidency with good will. Obama himself stoked the fires of racism… because he needed to blame someone else for his miserable incompetence. It’s like when blacks shoot blacks in increasing numbers on the streets of Obama’s home city of Chicago, the politically correct response is to blame it on white police or on white privilege.
Anyway, since Beinart cannot see through his own guilt, he ignores the possibility that the Hillary campaign, through its surrogates and its satraps, has taxed Americans with sexism and has told us all that voting for her will absolve us of all our sins.
Better yet, Beinart suggests that men are turned off by Hillary because they feel that she threatens their manhood. This is a cheap rhetorical trick. It says that voting for Hillary makes you a real man. It’s almost like saying that men who unman themselves to support Hillary are the only real men. What does that say about her husband who, when he found his manhood threatened by Hillary, looked elsewhere for support and sustenance? Again and again and again. Moreover, Bubba was not known for treating his conquests well: he was accused of sexual harassment and even rape.
If Hillary did not threaten her husband’s manhood, would he have been cheating on her with utter impunity? And would have cast a blind eye on it? Idem for Anthony Weiner.
For better or for worse, women were swooning over Bill Clinton. Name me one man who is having erotic dreams with Hillary Clinton.
For the record, anecdotally, I know many women who despise Hillary far more than any man does. And these women do not belong to the Tea Party.
Beinart makes the point that masculinity is something that is earned while femininity is a woman’s birthright. The point is interesting, yet, Hillary is not a very feminine woman and she has surely not earned her chance to be president.
Many people, even men, resent her because she did not work her way up. She rode her husband’s coattails… like Evita Peron and Lurleen Wallace. These latter, of course, never pretended to have earned much of anything. They were stand-ins.
If women do not earn their way in the world of politics or of business they will not receive respect. As long as there are diversity quotas the successes of minority candidates and women will be compromised by the assumption that they did not earn their way. And it tells us why they often do not command as much respect as a man.
Moreover, most people are less guilt ridden than Peter Beinart and understand that the difference between men and women is not just a social construct.
As it happens, people do not react well to ambitious and powerful women. Clearly, there are exceptions to the rule—Margaret Thatcher comes to mind—but even the great Angela Merkel is setting an example of how not to govern a nation. Considering the horrors that Merkel has unleashed in Germany why would anyone not be skeptical of women leaders who feel compelled to show their motherly side by allowing nations to be flooded with sexual predators? Is it their revenge against women who are younger and more attractive?
What if it’s not prejudice that makes it more difficult for women to exercise power, but something that is hard wired into the organism? We have already remarked on the fact that women leaders sometimes drop their voices a few octaves in order to sound more authoritative.
But, a woman who starts talking like a man will be less likely to attract the interest of men—witness Hillary. A woman has the option but she should not expect that men will find her irresistibly alluring for doing so.
This means, that as long as women are given a truly free choice of how they want to conduct their lives, very few women will want to sacrifice home and family in favor of becoming an ersatz man.
The negative reaction to Hilary is not just about violating gender norms. Or even about being a fake man. It’s the manifest incompetence she has shown while pretending to be Secretary of State. If you cannot distinguish the two you are just trying to lay a guilt trip on all of us.
Of course, evidence of successful women leaders is very slim. Beinart seems to think that women leaders are more tentative because they are disrespected. In truth, women leaders command less respect because they are more tentative and more hesitant. After all, women are constitutionally weaker than men and thus instinctively less inclined to be confrontational or to lean in. The behavior has been hard wired into the organism by the laws of natural selection. You remember Darwin, don’t you?
This does not mean that women cannot exercise leadership. It doesn’t mean that it’s impossible, but it does mean that it’s very rare. In this case exceptions do not make the rule.