It was a long time coming and I resisted the emotion for as long as humanly possible, but yes now I really do hate Hillary Clinton.
When she and Bill burst on the national scene in 1992, I was willing to entertain the possibility of a new updated Eleanor and Franklin story, only this time "Eleanor" would have more than just "Franklin's" ear. She would have some real policymaking power.
But her insistance on doing healthcare reform by organizing the corporations instead of the people turned out to be a disastrous miscalculation. It wasn't all her fault, social movements in the USA were at a disappointing ebb back then. But was she really arrogant enough to believe she could reform our entire healthcare system without serious grassroots organizing?
And why was she so hellbent on a "welfare reform" rampage that drove even more women into desperate poverty? Where were the efforts to improve our labor laws, improve our educational system and end the racial and gender discrimination that created the feminization of poverty?
For many people in America Hillary Clinton was the public face of feminism. I'm sorry to say that she just fed into the stereotype that feminists only care about upper middle class white women.
Still, I could identify with her struggle as a smart ambitious woman trying to navigate the treacherous shoals of our medieval gender caste system. She took a lot of heat so the rest of us didn't have to endure quite as much. Her personal struggles with her husband's out-of-control sex addiction gave us a lot to think about, even if we disagreed on how she handled it.
I had hope that when the drama of the Clinton White House was over, that Hillary would find something commensurate with her talent and that perhaps she would grow politically as a result of that baptism by fire.
I cheered when she was elected Senator from New York in the face of a vicious sexist campaign against her. The rightwing unleashed their hate machine and when the dust cleared it was Hillary Clinton who was still standing.
But then there was her vote on the Iraq War in 2003. That was a defining moment. Sometimes a politician just has to do the right thing for the country even if jeopardizes their political career. Hillary Clinton wimped out along with John Kerry, John Edwards and so many others.
I knew that Hillary Clinton was only barely a liberal, but her war vote caused me to move from grudging respect to an outright dislike and a sense of betrayal.
Then came the 2008 Democratic primary and the unleashing of a nakedly racist campaign strategy starting in the state of South Carolina. At first I wanted to believe that it was just Bill Clinton running out of control, but it soon became apparent that Hillary Clinton had climbed down into the racial gutter with him.
What was especially disgusting was that she doing this at a time when she was coming under a relentless rain of nasty sexist attacks. Feminists aren't supposed to fight back against sexism by unleashing racism, something that many white corporate-style feminists forgot in their rush to support her.
Didn't the Clintons understand the importance of a progressive multiracial coalition that is our only chance to turn this country around? Didn't they understand how such a movement could tear down the walls of our racial and gender caste system and reverse the massive transfer of wealth to the corporate ruling class?
I think they understood all of that perfectly well and wanted to help derail any social movement that was independent of corporate control. That would sure look good to their many corporate clients, wouldn't it?
But my hatred of her moved into cold fury with her Bobby Kennedy comment in the state of South Dakota. How many people have given their lives while trying to bring about the multiracial coalition that Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King came to symbolize?
What was most disturbing to me was the glib way she talked about the assassination as if it were just another blip in a political campaign.
Hillary Clinton was a student in 1968 and she knows damned well what a catastrophic loss it was to the nation when our best hopes went down in hails of bullets. The result was decades of savage rightwing rule starting with Richard Nixon and continuing on up to George W. Bush.
Hillary Clinton stepped over the line in South Carolina, but she went over the edge in South Dakota.
Please go away...far...far away. America doesn't need your services anymore.