Thursday, April 10, 2008

The victim card

One of the most irritating things about the Hillary Clinton campaign is about how her campaign workers and supporters keep whining that she's being discriminated against because she's a woman. It's just one play after another of the "oh poor me, I'm a victim!" thing. Bad press? It's not because she's a prickly personality who rarely gives reporters the time of day. It's because she's a woman. Out of money? It's not because she shunned the online progressive community in favor of sucking up to big wigs, it's because she has no Y chromosome. Etc. etc. etc. Nevermind that women have been elected governor of major red states like Arizona, Texas, and Louisiana as well as a number of blue states, while the number of blacks elected governor in *any* state can be counted on one hand. Women are discriminated against when running for office and if you don't support her it's because you hate women, that's her message, over and over again.

The playing of the victim card was silly the first time, but played over and over again it's just plain old. It might work if she were running against a white male. But she's not. She's running against a black man (and spare me the bit about how he's half-white, as far as white America is concerned, he's black). As in, can't plan a trip of 500 miles without adding a couple of hours because he knows he'll get stopped at least twice for Driving While Black. As in, a quarter of his fellow black male high school classmates are in jail or on probation. As in, more college-age black men in jail than in college. As in, white women cross the street when they see him coming. Now, when you can show me middle-aged white women being pulled over for Driving While Female, 25% of white females in jail or on probation, white females vastly under-represented in colleges, and people crossing the street when they see white females coming, maybe then Hilary could use the victim card. But using it when she's running against a black male? WTF? Is she really that insensitive regarding the state of race relations in this country today?!

BTW, you'll note that Obama *never* plays the victim card. Ever. When things go down hard on him, he *never* says "you're just biased against me because I'm black." He addresses whatever point is in question, e.g. the Wright question, and moves on. Much preferable to all that whining coming out of the Hillary camp...

-- Badtux the Whine Penguin


  1. I still think you are so totally fucking wrong re: the last beatup you had with Skippy, but totally right on this. Don't ask me why these two different things are the same (or is it these two identical things are different). That's just the way it is, bunster. Good post.

  2. One of the things I respect about the big 'Roo is that he never censors those kinds of discussions and lets folks say what they're going to say as long as it's reasonably thoughtful (i.e., not just total cut-and-paste spam nonsense). Compare/contrast with the right-wing sites, where the first comment would have resulted in me being banned from the site for disagreeing with the proprietor...

  3. What happened between you and skippy? I've given up blogging over there and all but given up reading his blog because I think I've been doing his site more harm than good with my posts as of late. I think that's a rotten way to treat someone who's been better to me than anyone else in blogtopia. So I've stepped off, and I don't know what's been happening there...

  4. I think you pretty much threw all points at the wall and they stuck.

    Great post.

  5. Sorry dude, you know I love ya', man, but you're almost completely full of shit on this one.

  6. I believe part of her complaints are legit. I mean, the guy who showed up at a press conference with "Iron my Shirt" on a placard? Everyone's hysteria over her shedding a tear? Constant analyzing of her wardrobe? And, don't even get me started on the wingnuttia talk show hosts. She does take a lot of shit because she's a... *gasp* woman. Just like Obama takes a lot of shit because of his name. The problem is Hillary doesn't have a thick skin for such things. It's only going to get messier before someone makes the right decision and pulls the plug on her doomed campaign.

  7. It appears that Bum agrees with Geraldine Ferraro, who whines that Obama is getting a "free ride" from the media because he's black. No. He's getting a "free ride" from the media because he's a riveting orator, because he is a politically skilled operator, because he has a gigantic fan base of anti-war progressives attracted to his campaign because of his early opposition to the Iraq war (an opposition that seems prescient today, but he basically said the exact same things I was saying at the time -- that invading Iraq would be easy, but the aftermath would be a disaster, things we were both saying because we had carefully observed the ethnic tensions of Iraq and the way the Bush Administration was screwing up the same issues in Afghanistan), etc. And the Wright deal shows that the "free ride" is over.

    Now, regarding playing the victim card, yeah, sexist language is more acceptable than racist language. But racist behavior is tolerated more than sexist remarks. Make a sexist remark in the workplace, you risk a sexual harassment lawsuit. Stop a dark-skinned male driving a blinged-out Cadillac Escalade through a white neighborhood for Driving While Black, you're praised as being an effective law enforcement officer and given a promotion. The differential punishment of white drug offenders vs. black male drug offenders is applauded by the community as "taking dangerous animals off the streets". Etc. I mean, my Indian co-worker can't drive from one side of the state to the other without being stopped at least twice on suspicion of Driving While Hispanic (she knows this is what the issue is because once they see her driver's license and see she's Indian, suddenly they go from being the asshole cop from hell to being polite), and her husband, a darker-skinned Indian, can't drive his BMW in certain neighborhoods in town without being stopped on suspicion of Driving While Black (same story, when they see his driver's license and that he's Indian, they go from being the cop from Hell to being polite). That's the state of race relations in the United States today -- it's a war out there, and it's a war primarily against dark-skinned people.

    Note that Geraldine Ferraro isn't some random Clinton supporter off the street. She was a top official in the Clinton campaign until she stuck her foot in her mouth. Now, point to me some top official of the Obama campaign whining that people don't like Obama because he's black...

    -- Badtux the Victim Card Penguin


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