Feminism, The Body Politic, and Picking a President

Anybody following this interminable election cycle has probably seen the mud slinging, the by turns insane, hilarious, and terrifying GOP debates, and the charges back and forth in the Democratic camp of “Feminists vote for Hillary” or “You’re not a feminist if you Feel the Bern” etc.

As anyone who reads this blog regularly knows, neither of us is going to vote for anyone with an R after their name, especially in this current bunch of lunatics.  There is no lesser of two evils here, there’s just psychopathy, sociopathy, delusions of grandeur, pathological lies, hate, and stupidity.  And that’s just Trump.

The real story, for the purposes of this post at least, is about what’s happening on the Democratic ticket.  The Republican primary, for the moment, is a terrifying sideshow.  This is the first time since Hillary ran against Obama that the Democratic primary has offered two “firsts”.  Instead of an African American and a woman running against one another we have a woman and a Jew running against one another.  The Democratic party has presented us with a plethora of amazing choices over the last 3 Presidential election cycles and I am thankful for it.

However.  There’s always a “however”.  It’s leading to a lot of stuff like this happening.

This image came from a tweet by John Scalzi, who’s had a lot of good things to say about this election, and his response was, “Uh, maybe any goddamned way they want to?”  And that, dear reader, is absolutely the right answer and is also precisely the problem with the Democratic primary race.

Two days ago there was a kerfuffle on Twitter about a comment made by someone which was then quoted more or less out of context by someone else… the details got boring really fast and a lot of people, and particularly women, either got angry or found it hilarious pretty quickly.  The upshot was this.

Which may or may not have led to me laughing really, really hard.  Particularly when I heard from a friend that she’d heard implied that a vote for Bernie was a vote against Feminism.  That comment, and the irritation of this idea that women and Feminists are required to vote for Hillary, was what inspired this post.

You see, the thing is this.  Geoff and I both started this ridiculously long election cycle assuming that we’d vote for Hillary.  Like a lot of liberals, our votes were hers to lose.  And that’s exactly what happened.  Not only did Bernie Sanders come surging to the fore with a lot of really good answers and infrastructure he also did something really important.  He apologized when he was wrong.  He sat down with the Black Lives Matter folks when they wanted to talk to him.  And he’s talking to and about people like us, people who need a path to stable jobs, homeownership, and maybe being able to retire someday.

Where Hillary is a calculating political machine, Bernie is a person.  Where Hillary dodges questions Bernie answers them.  Where Hillary has to swerve and move to get to the part of the political spectrum she thinks is progressive, Bernie lives there naturally.  And, nobody in Bernie’s camp is assuming that I’m voting for him because I’m female.  I hate to tell you, Hillary, but even if that’s not your message, it is coming across loud and clear and your supporters are doing you no favors here.

Also, going back to the Twitter kerfuffle referenced above: 1) I can’t vote with my uterus as I’ve had it removed 2) that seems physically tricky and 3) totally unhygenic and 4) if you’re going to require that of women then men should have to vote with their prostate.  Deal?

All jokes aside, I do hope that everyone, even the people telling women like me and my friend that a female vote for Bernie is a sexist vote which, surprise, it isn’t, remember the following.

Whoever wins the nomination has my vote.  That’s my pledge, because either of them is light years better than anyone in the GOP clown car and everyone reading this knows that to be the truth.

~Kelly

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