Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Hillary Clinton Goes High. The Other Person On Stage Starts Low And Sinks

Hillary Clinton aced it last night at the first debate, if you can call it that. My idea of a debate is the exchange of serious ideas by intelligent people. This of course wasn't that.

One debater was a super-informed, well-prepared candidate who has spent her life in public office working to improve lives of others. A woman with an enormous investment in the well-being of all Americans, equipped with formidable intelligence, articulacy and experience in debating in general and especially in the topics up for debate. A woman who has faced down an inordinate amount of bullying for decades, a lot of it driven by misogyny in a chauvenist political world where men and women were threatened by her for having the audacity to be in her power. She's never given up, never lost focus, resolve, dignity or compassion. And her smile still lights up the room. All in all, she's a pretty intimidating debate opponent.

The other person on the stage was a super-privileged, un-prepared, uninformed bully who has destroyed the lives of many in his lust to accumulate wealth and power and who, unable to achieve his goals, has simply lied; a coward of sub-intellect who struggles to finish even a simple sentence, who doesn't understand the laws of grammar, and whose only talent is for bluster, bullying, bullshit and bloviation. No wonder he looked nervous. It's one thing having your ego stroked by a crowd of deplorables.

It's another facing, on your own, an opponent who is the real deal, who isn't afraid of you, who knows how to cut you down to size, who is better than you in every conceivable way. Who has an inner strength you can only dream of, and the respect and endorsement of all the good people, all the smart people.

First Lady Michelle Obama spoke at the Democratic National Convention about her girls, how hard it was to watch them at the age of seven and ten pile into those black SUVs with men with guns, how she thought "What have we done?" How she and Barack had to teach them that the vile rhetoric they saw on TV and in the media did not represent "the true spirit of America". And that the way to deal with bullies is "when they go low we go high". It was a speech for the ages.

Hillary Clinton quoted the First Lady last night at the debate "when they go low we go high", and it was how she conducted herself. As Trump disintegrated, she kept her composure; as he tried to trade insults, going lower and lower, she went higher and higher.

Of all the edited video footage that's come out of the debate so far, this is my favorite, from the Huffpost's article Lester Holt Proved That Moderators Can Fack-Check.

"Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S." - Huffpost Editor’s Note.