What do you think of Hillary supporting things when those things start to become popular (i.e. gay marriage)? Isn’t that the least bit suspicious? Isn’t that just a little bit of an indicator that she’s just trying to gain power and will say anything to get it?
It’s hard to remember this (thankfully) but ten years ago it was impossible to get elected to a highly contested political office while supporting gay marriage. Hillary’s statement in 2000 that marriage was between a man and a woman, but people in committed same-sex relationships should be given the same rights as a married couple was a politically dangerous compromise in the year 2000. Indeed, this was the exact same compromise that Bernie Sanders helped usher in in Vermont that same year.
People get so damned pissed at Hillary…picking apart every bit of her record to confirm the existing bias that she’s a conspiratorial, power-hungry nut job. It’s terrifying to me, because she’s likely to be the nominee, and we seem really predisposed to distrusting her.
I don’t really understand people who get up in a politician’s face for being at the mercy of public opinion. It is literally their job to enforce the will of the people, that’s why this is a democracy. I would much rather have a person lead this country who is willing to change their mind than one who has always believed and will always believe the same thing. Or worse, someone who knows without a doubt that they are always right and have somehow never been wrong.
Bernie has been a much more stalwart supporter of LGBT rights than Hillary, and his vote against the “Defense of Marriage Act” was politically dangerous and courageous. But he also had the freedom of representing a small, homogenous, progressive state.
I remember the dumb arguments we made to ourselves that gay marriage wasn’t a big deal. I remember accepting those arguments myself. And I remember it being an litmus test that conservatives were using to weed out progressives and further their totally unrelated agendas. It sucked, but it happened…and we have to remember that before around 2006, a very strong majority of Americans opposed gay marriage.
It seems impossible now to be a conscious human and be opposed to marriage equality, but that was not the case 20 years ago. We sucked, and we shouldn’t forget it or give people a pass…but Hillary was ahead of the curve on this issue…just not as ahead as Bernie was.
Hank is spot on in his comments above. Except that not all Americans sucked. Only some of us did. And those of us who sucked, sucked on some things but not others. And more importantly, the majority of us who did suck, over time, we started sucking less.
That’s what’s so fascinating about political change in a democracy. The hard work isn’t in serving the people who are already not sucky – it’s in bringing along the people who, at the moment, are.
It is quite possible that America’s current acceptance of the right to marriage and the right to health care wouldn’t exist without the work of the Clinton Administration in the 1990s.
If Bill Clinton doesn’t get LBGTQ soldiers accepted in the military, a victory that was hard fought and not without compromise, then America doesn’t have a public debate about the human rights of its LGBTQ citizens involving one of its most stalwart institutions.
If Hillary Clinton doesn’t campaign for universal health care when no one – not even the Clinton’s own party – would unite on the issue, then America doesn’t acknowledge its soaring costs and decaying coverage as more than an economic issue and consider health care as a human right.
While it would have been better to have both issues resolved twenty years ago, getting a large percentage of the country to change their minds was a huge step toward sucking less.
Reminder: politicians aren’t characters in a scripted drama. And yet we seem to always treat them as such.
Actually, come to think of it, isn’t that how too many people treat all others.
Human beings are not characters.