US Politics today
We still have a full nine months to endure and witness the insane and dysfunctional US presidential election campaign. It’s been the maddest I’ve ever witnessed and there are bound to be more crazy moments between here and November. But I just want to say a few words about it.
I am a liberal, left-leaning democrat. I believe in inclusivity, opportunity, equality and fairness.
We’ve seen some unspeakable behaviour from Trump on his campaign. His pronouncements really do beggar belief. My view is that he brings shame on his country and gives ammunition to those who want to harm democracies everywhere.
At the same time, we see Bernie Sanders, probably the most left leaning politician to ever be a contender at this stage of the political cycle. He has massive support form the young voters and he just gave Hillary Clinton a scare in Iowa. So what’s happening?
I think it’s a cusp moment. What we are witnessing here will be repeated in other democracies around the world. We are seeing a tipping point from the old, pre Internet generation to the web-born-natives. Think about it, the voting age in the US is 18. That means they were born in 1998. By the time they were in High School, they all had email addresses and Bebo accounts.
Equally, the old guard are scared. They are lost in the sea of technology, their assets are based on the baby boom and they have no idea how to cope with the modern world. These are Trump’s supporters. He articulates their fear and his quick-fix platitudes are a comfort blanket to them.
That’s why this is such an interesting and complex election. We won’t see it’s like again.
If that weren’t enough, we have Hillary Clinton, shooting for the presidential nomination of the Democratic party for the second time, to become the first ever female president of the United States of America.
Given what I said above, if you were to draw a political, left/right line from Sanders to Trump, Hillary would be in the middle third, depending on the policy.
That should do her well come the vote, when the electorate have to face up to who, on balance, will represent them best.
So what about Hillary?
There is no doubt that she is the most qualified and experienced candidate from either party.
She has credentials and respect from counties around the world from her time as Secretary of State. You might not agree with everything she did but ask yourself who else in the pack could make those decisions and deal with real-world politics?
But beyond the politics of this US election and beyond even the USA, electing Hillary Clinton as president would send a huge message to the world.
It would help girls and women across the globe to believe that there is no limit to what they can achieve. It would force repressive and inequitable regimes to face up to the fact that the most powerful nation on Earth has elected a woman to be their leader.
The USA and the Western democracies are under an ideological threat from fundamentalists and terrorists who denigrate learning, openness, culture and, most importantly, the role of women in society. We need to demonstrate that this is not to be tolerated.
So, to my many American friends, irrespective of your fears, impulses or concerns; vote for Hillary Clinton in November. Your vote will resonate throughout history and way beyond your national borders and you will most certainly make your country a safer and better place to live in.