Stop Telling Me Hillary Gave Us Trump

>> Saturday, March 18, 2017

I've mostly stepped off the politics for a while, not just because the current administration not only makes me physically ill with their hateful callousness and cluelessness, not just because I feel helpless at this stage to do anything about it, but because I feel like this country literally kicked me in the gut with their choice for top executive, me and every capable, talented, hard-working, meticulous woman who has ever tried to meet every impossible standard and been deemed lacking while some know-nothing moron with the "right" plumbing took the job. Nor was it just a slap in the face for accomplished women everywhere (and, no, I don't think it's any better than many of the women slapped themselves) but also a direct attack on poor people, LGBT, Muslims, Jews, blacks, Latinos, immigrants in general (including those here legally) and disabled people. I felt like my own country, which I loved, had repudiated me, had repudiated all of us. I have never felt so betrayed.

So, if you intend to tell me to get over it, you're on the wrong page. I won't delete your comment, but I will make you wish you hadn't made it. You've been warned. 

However, as the real horror, the implications of having a hateful, self-serving, corrupt idiot in the most important job in the government tied with a Congress that has proven itself just as hateful, self-serving, and corrupt in the only position to provide a check to him letting him have a free hand, sinks in, even to the people who supported him (well some of them), the great finger-pointing mess has begun. Far too many folks, especially those who should know better, are rushing to point the finger at Hillary for not being good enough. 

Oh, no, that's not what happened. I've been the smart one in the room. I've been at the table where everyone agreed that my data was best and my conclusions were logical but, hey, we weren't going to do that anyway. I saw this election as a repudiation by my country of everything *I* am, not just Hillary. I watched her every step. She did everything right, and, had every step second-guessed by phalanxes of noisy pundits telling her (and more importantly us) what she ought to be doing - often insisting on completely opposite advice. And usually wanting her to do what someone else was doing and failing.

The supreme irony of blaming her is that the very same people who undercut her, refused to explain her many many strengths, in fact deliberately kept them hidden, are the same folks whining that she didn't do enough. So, not only for every Trump voter, but for every voter who stayed home, every idget who piously threw their votes away on equally know-nothing but possibly less hateful third party candidates, to every newspaper and, especially, news show who peed yourselves in glee to go on endlessly about Hillary's every perceived imperfection while ignoring Trump's total dishonesty, greed and deviancy and equally ignoring Hillary's impressive resume of real verifiable accomplishments and detailed plans to do more, but also those folks, even if you voted for Hillary, who couldn't keep yourself from making a dig at her at every opportunity, let me just say:

Fuck you.

I mean, I could say it more kindly and cleverly and try to cut you down with logic and reason, but, y'know, you weren't listening before the election. I don't expect it would make an impression on you now.

You might think that's too harsh, but I don't think it's harsh enough considering the pain you'll be inflicting on the most vulnerable in this country. The children whose educations you've destroyed. The old people you'll be starving. The sick people you've left to die unnecessarily. The environment you've murdered irretrievably in the forlorn and dangerous hope that your son can also become a coal miner. Every black man who knows no one will be standing up for his rights when he gets hurt. Every little girl in the country who just learned, firsthand, that no matter what she does, how accomplished she becomes, how intelligent she is, how perfectly she dots every i or crosses every t, she'll be passed over to suit the whims of the total and unabashed asshole with no accomplishments, skills or human decency. Every Muslim child who is treated like a monster.  Every Jew who sees his synagogue defaced or left burning. Every immigrant child or child with a Latino name who is treated like a criminal. Every gay teen left beaten and battered because the hateful feel vindicated in their hatred.

You have used your freedom to potentially destroy these peoples' dreams and possibly their lives. Yeah, you'll suffer, too, but that's not quite enough for justice.Your choice; your responsibility. That's the real price of freedom.

But one thing I won't stand for is you pretending Hillary was the problem when this nightmare is one you brought on yourselves. You media being belittled and squashed. You poor people finding out your only lifelines are being eliminated because you had to vote with your worst instincts. The GOP and the media have spent twenty-five years vilifying a woman who has done more good than most people in the world. This is all on you.

And spare me how she could have handled it better, that she lost "bigly".

Just the notion is absurd, and I noticed this in 2008, when Hillary had nearly as many votes as President Obama in the primary. For months--years--all I could hear was how she totally flubbed it.

No one says that about Sanders this race, even though he lost by a relative mile. No one said it about Romney or McCain (well, except noting his VP choice) when they lost to Obama - how they totally flubbed it, even though they both lost, er, bigly.

But when Hillary loses, even if it's spurious, even if she does so well she's a hair breadth's away, it's all about how she totally failed, flubbed it, screwed up. Even during the most winningest moments in the campaign, primary and general, every article about her went into a long litany of what was wrong with her and why people hated her.

Didn't seem to occur to anyone that constantly being told how hated she was might have been an eensy teensy factor.

To be frank, given the constant bombardment of bad press, backhanded compliments, even pro-pieces, filled with caveats and subtle digs, it's probably more amazing how she continually did so well, connected, without fanfare, to so many millions of people while everyone was busy not noticing. Amazing. But, since we insisted on perfection for women, still not good enough.

That's how I see it. I am not alone in this thinking. There are a few other voices in the wilderness who get it, like here and here.

So, why is this important? Why harp on it? Because if we don't recognize the real criminals in this, the real reason why this country will be brought to the brink of ruin (if not tipped over), we can never do better. It wasn't Hillary. It's us. Trump is the president this country deserves. We deserved him because we refused to educate ourselves and let our blind hatred do our talking for us. Don't give me your sob story about how Hillary should have wooed you specifically or how disheartened you are that immigrants are taking your jobs (they're not). You brought this on yourselves and, if you want this country to be the great country it could be, you're going to have to take a look in the mirror and change your ways.

Trump won, at least in part because his hatefulness resonated with a large part of the populace. Partly because he's cultivated a persona of being smart and wealthy, no matter how belied by facts, and partly because the folks in this country, including plenty of women, are willing to believe the worst of a woman and the best of a man, no matter the evidence. I wish that wasn't so, but it clearly is.

If we survive this, it will be because we learned something. Because, if we don't, we don't deserve to survive.


  • N.Martinsen

    I can't "like" this enough. Seriously, Stephanie. You deserve every accolade in the book and those that haven't been invented yet. Thank you.

  • Telene

    Thank you for putting into words what I am feeling !

  • Stephanie Barr

    You are both welcome. I had to say it. Took me a while to get to a place where I could do so (relatively) calmly.

  • Lauralee

    So well said.

    Still can't wrap my head around so many people voting to shoot themselves in the foot...and their parents and their kids too.

  • Stephanie Barr

    I'm at a loss as to how someone could have a daughter or know one of many of the vulnerable people who will suffer and live with themselves.

  • Chuck Larlham

    Every other day I go into a large room , lie back in a modified La-Z-Boy and have two needles inserted into a surgically modified vein. Then I let a machine pretend it's my kidney for four-and-a-half hours. During that experience, uplifting though it is not,I receive an education on just this topic. I am forced to hear how successful he is at doing what he said he'd do, and it must be the right thing because, look'it. after all, the lib'ruls are all screaming like they were being skinned alive.
    Having attempted and set aside all attempts at a logical explanation of what's about to happen, I am reduced to answering, "There will come a day when you'll regret this election's results as much as I already do.

  • Darby

    Thanks for this enlightening essay. I feel a little less baffled now.
    But I'm still angry that more Americans didn't vote for the most qualified person who has ever run for President!

  • Stephanie Barr

    I'm sorry, Chuck. I wish I could have prevented this.

    Thanks, Darby. So am I, in case you missed it.

  • Sally Bahner

    You are expressing the rage, fear, and frustration so many of us are feeling. I've signed petitions, written congress, tweeted, and emailed and feel like I'm pissing in the wind. I don't want to live through a nuclear war.

  • Stephanie Barr

    I wish I could tell you something hopeful. I can't, Sally.

  • Painter47

    Thanks so much for saying so well what so many of us are feeling and thinking. Hopeless and helpless. And angry! BUT! - all that having been said. Now what? How do we get ourselves out of this without rage and madness and war? If Trump is a red herring, then what are we missing that we can do something about - deaccessioning the good done in the past for children, elders, intersex, for our whole nation? The Executive branch? We haven't lived in this country for that many years, we are all immigrants. HELP!

  • GeneriTenor

    If I'm not mistaken, in the 2008 primary Clinton got more votes than Obama. He prevailed in delegates.

    In short, you're spot on.

  • Stephanie Barr

    The people in power, Congress as much as the executive branch, are all but untouchable because the government assumed we'd never have so many corrupt people in power at once.

    We can sign and march, but none of that will change that situation. I wish the obvious violations in laws, the blatant corruption would take Trump and company down, but I'm not hopeful with Congress acting, specifically GOP Congress, actively covering up for him. The mechanisms are not built in without Congress' support.

    They're not even pretending to listen to us or care about us, mind you. Because, somehow the media, owned by a handful of people - which should never have been allowed to happen--is actively working to their benefit. Possibly because its not just easy to manipulate people with anger in fear (GOP tactics) but also because ratings improve when you stir up outrage, which is why they're willing to attack Trump now and ignored much of this same information when it mattered: before the election.

    The power of the people is in the voting booth. And we have to change what we're doing. We have to not be manipulated. We need to start caring about the caliber of the people being elected, their actual capabilities, what they actual stand for and, more importantly, DO with their power.

    We have not only change our representation, but we need to make sure they take steps to limit corruption, make conflict of interest toss them from office, require truth in media (or penalties are imposed), require independent investigation of criminal activity instead of being protected by their fellow politicians.

    If we don't do that, we're doomed.

    Assuming we get the chance.

  • Stephanie Barr

    GeneriTenor, the total votes in the 2008 primary depended on how they were taken, if they counted certain votes. But either way you calculate it, there was only a fraction of a percentage between them. Hillary was only "blown away" by delegates, and nowhere near as blown away as Bernie was at the same time. But Bernie did an "amazing" job while she was totally "screwed up" that primary.

    But, of course, no sexism here.<=sarcasm font

    So, yeah, this is not a new thing.

  • GreenSangha

    I posted this to my page with a warning that I didn't want to hear if someone disagrees and wants to discuss Hillary's "flaws" or talk about why they voted for a third party candidate. Those comments are not welcome on my page. I'm done playing "nice". Thanks for writing this! Mahina Nightsage

  • Stephanie Barr

    You're welcome.

    On this page, they can disagree, but they should expect to see me answer without restraint. I will not be gentle.

    I warned them.

  • lindzcoop

    Thank you for being the one to finally say this....I have said it was not her fault on fb a thousand times, maybe your article will drive the point home for some people.

  • Stephanie Barr

    I've said it, too. I'm floored by how hard that is for some people to believe.

  • From Peter Combs and Bidamount

    She didn't give us Trump, but she made herself unpalatable to the DNC base in key states and districts. Her values were not in alignment with those she needed most to win. Had President Obama been eligible to run again, he would have won by a landslide. Plain and simple, the voters rejected Hillary and her views. America's blue collar workers and minorities weren't buying her viewpoints. Black voters stayed home in droves, middle America didn't know what they wanted, but they knew they didn't want her. Her message rang hollow to just too many, the exposure of the misbehavior of the DNC on Hillary's behalf to harm Sanders only further eroded trust. Trump is a moron, but was apparently more palatable than Hillary on November 9th 2016. As bad as he is, she couldn't beat him whihc only puntuates just how bad she was in the end.

  • Stephanie Barr

    Sorry, Peter, that doesn't make any sense.

    Her views=Obama's views (well, she was a bit to the left on some of them). He totally endorsed her. She fought for healthcare before it was "in", gotten beaten back (including by Bernie), and that jumped back in to at least save children WHICH SHE DID.

    But not a damn thing you say has anything to do with what she ACTUALLY did, her ACTUAL views, just the constant bombardment of hatefulness that even her "allies" subjected her to.

    You haven't provided a SINGLE point that demonstrates you point, and you can't without coughing up RW propaganda with a new label on it. You're a damn fool. And, if you claim to be a progressive and think, for one minute, that she would have done the harm Trump has already done this country, you're actually a fool to the nth power.

    She answered Bernie's agenda to placate assholes like you. Not good enough. She had one of the most successful, useful, do-gooding and transparent charities in the world. Not good enough for you. In decades of attacks no one could indict her, no one could find something even worth charging her, but the slander and accusations were never ending.

    Apparently, innocent until proven guilty is only for men. Thank you for making my point for me.

    Trump is your doing. You deserve him.

  • Stephanie Barr

    See, Peter Coombs, among the many flaws in your "logic" is the notion that, since she lost (though not the popular vote), she must actually be bad. Well, voters don't actual determine guilt but thank you for playing.

    But, given that logic, doesn't that make Bernie damn near a criminal since he couldn't even get as many primary votes as TRUMP?

    I wish you folks would stop arguing with deep chasms in your logic. It's embarrassing for thinking people to have a battle of wits with the unarmed.

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