Calling Bill Clinton on the Cluephone

Posted in dem primary, oh FFS, Opinion by yliza on April 22, 2008

via The Huffington Post:

The following audio clip is from an interview of Bill Clinton by Susan Phillips of WHYY.org. She brings up his comments equating Obama’s South Carolina primary win to Jesse Jackson’s in 1988. Bill then gets all huffy and claims the race card was played against him. The last thing he says, when he apparently believes the mike is off, is “I don’t think I should take any shit from anybody on that, do you?”

So let me get this straight. Bill Clinton invokes Jesse Jackson when his wife loses South Carolina, and the race card is being played on him? Bill, Bill, Bill, get a clue.

I was living in California in 1988, when Jesse Jackson ran for president. I remember the birth of The Rainbow Coalition very well, it was a concept that appealed to me on many levels. But at that time I was in graduate school, trying to maintain my identity in an environment that included no other Black people. And to those folks, Jesse Jackson was not a serious candidate. He may have won South Carolina, but he was getting zero traction in Southern California. I would liked to have voted for him, but I didn’t, because I knew he was going nowhere.

Please don’t tell me you didn’t know that too, Bill. You’re a savvy politician, I doubt you would’ve been president otherwise, and no matter how much respect and love you have for Jesse Jackson you can’t seriously expect me to believe you thought he had a snowball’s chance in hell of winning the nomination.

Reverse racism? Spare me. I hear that every time a White person utters a (possibly subliminal) racist comment and is called out on it. It is a refusal to recognize how insidious and pervasive this issue is in our culture. And it is an indication of how much I respect your intelligence that I believe you know this very well. (more…)

Fall in love, fall in line

Posted in dem primary, oh FFS by yliza on April 15, 2008

The common political wisdom states that the primaries are the time for falling in love, while the general election is the time for falling in line. So we fall in love with our chosen primary candidate, but agree to support whomever wins the Democratic nomination.

Normally I wouldn’t have a problem with that. This is probably the most important presidential election of my lifetime, and I worry what this country will look like after 4 more years of Republican rule. And six months ago, I would have had no problem casting my vote for Hillary Clinton.

Not anymore. At some point, you have to stand up and say “No more.” (more…)

You Reap What You Sow

Posted in dem primary by yliza on January 31, 2008

I voted for Bill Clinton in 1992, and I was happy to have a choice that wasn’t a perpetuation of the prior 12 years of greed-is-good Republican rule.

I was on their side when the right-wing smear machine went after the Clintons. I was very upset with the way Hillary was demonized, before she even got into the White House. The feminist in me liked seeing a strong woman as First Lady. I supported her efforts on issues such as health care. She wasn’t my first choice, but I was more than willing to vote for her if she got the democratic nomination. (NOTE: yes, I know that Clinton policies were not as favorable to minorities as they like to say, but some things were better and it was a vast improvement over Reagan and Pappy Bush.)

So you can imagine my surprise and sense of betrayal over the primary in my current home state of SC.

Please don’t try to tell me that I’m imagining things. I’m 50 years old and have lived most of my life in the integrated North and in California. I know what the code words are, I’ve heard them all, as well as every lame excuse possible why I shouldn’t be upset or offended by them.

Would the term “shuck and jive” have been used with regard to Edwards? Would he have been compared to Jesse Jackson? I seriously doubt it. The mere idea seems ridiculous.

Women as Victims

Posted in oh FFS by yliza on January 30, 2008

Okay, now that Edwards is out I’m really going to step in it.

If, like me, you read blogs by Women of Color (most notably BlackAmazon), you’re familiar with the never-ending tension between White feminists and WoC.

Basically, it goes like this: White feminist says something dismissive about our issues, tells us to wait our turn, or says something that perpetuates a stereotype. Feminist of Color calls her out on it. White feminist cries “I’m not a racist! You’re being mean to me!”

By so doing, the White feminist puts herself in the position of Victim, and there is much rallying to support the poor flower of womanhood and much chastisement of the mean old Feminist of Color.

Seems to me, you can’t have it both ways. Playing the victim is pandering to patriarchy, where (white) women are fragile and need protection. Not the best path to empowerment, in my opinion. Yet it happens over and over. To me it looks like using privilege to advance.

Watch for this to happen, now that the Democratic primary is between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Hillary already capitalized on this when she cried, before the New Hampshire primary. Oh, wait, it’s already begun.

Obama has to be really, really careful. We know what happens to Black men who hurt White women.