I know this isn’t a political blog, but I wrote an op-ed piece for my Journalism class and thought I’d post it up here and see if it got any reactions.
Hilary Clinton took shots at Barak Obama for his comments at a closed San Francisco fundraiser, where he said he couldn’t blame small town, economically distressed voters who “cling to” guns and religion, then went out and tried to show her sympathies for those controversial subjects herself.
On Saturday, Clinton shared childhood memories of shooting lessons her father gave her, and said at the Compassion forum that since she was a child, she’s felt the “enveloping” love of God and that, on many occasions, she’s felt the Holy Spirit has been with her as she took her “journey.” So while criticizing Obama for assertions that working class Americans turn to guns and religion, she then assumes that his statement is true when trying to appeal to those same working class Americans, by trying to show that she likes guns and religion.
Then, to top it off, after branding Obama an elitist, she stops at a local bar to down a shot of whiskey, hoist a beer and eat a slice of pizza – again to show how similar to hard working Americans she is. Does she really think voters will believe this is an everyday event for her? Hilary, after a lengthy debate about what she should take a shot of, went with Canadian Crown Royal. She does it so often she didn’t even know what she liked to have.
Who is really the elitist: The candidate who makes the statement about the people, or the candidate who thinks that taking those stereotyped views and appealing to them will make her more likable?
When we view Obama’s comments in context, as reported by the Huffington Post, he was actually talking about how small town voters have slipped through the cracks.
He said that “they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not,” Obama reportedly continued. “It’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”
He was trying to say that he recognized there was a problem in these small towns and that he wanted to make things better for them. Hilary, by mocking his comments but trying to appeal to the same sentiments he is recognizing, seems to be saying it’s all going fine for these people – hey she’s just like them and it seems she’s doing well enough…
Finally, as Jon Stewart on the Daily Show said, what’s wrong with an elitist president? Shouldn’t the president be smarter then most Americans? If a candidate doesn’t think they know better then the rest of us, what are they doing running?
Americans have had an average Joe in the White House for too long. Bush is definitely not “elite” (though he may think himself to be). Don’t we want a change?