I’m hearing a lot of things that are upsetting me regarding this election. I’m already annoyed by so many things in politics.
As I’ve stated here, I am a conservative Democrat and a second-wave feminist and I support Hillary Clinton. I love a lot of the things Bernie Sanders stands for, but I don’t believe he is the most qualified politician for the job, especially in regard to international relations. And no, that’s not code for “I think he’s a dodo about Israel,” but I do know a lot of Jewish voters got mad at him for taking a classic liberal party line against Israel which I was not at all surprised that he took. And I also don’t think I am a bad Jew for being a Democrat.
Is Hillary perfect? Of course not. I am not in love with all of the email stuff and the…inconsistencies she may have going on. But you know what? Every politician lies and does sneaky things, it’s just true. It’s ok. It’s the nature of the beast. I think that people need to chill out and know you’re voting for a politician, not your mom or your dad or your priest of rabbi. Chill. Out. It’s all going to be okay.
And I absolutely know that a lot of people are afraid of a woman in office, even though women can and do serve in government positions all over the world and have for a long long time. Although some people don’t say “I’m nervous she’s a woman,” when we pay more attention to her history of emails more than male politicians’ emails and we start digging deep into her shady past and picking on her pants suits and asking how she could stay married to an unfaithful man, it becomes clear people have an issue with her being a woman.
And as a neuroscientist who studied hormones for 7 years in graduate school, I am here to affirm that yes: women do have different hormones than men, but we don’t all of a sudden decide to start wars because we are having a hot flash or because we need chocolate. And we don’t have our judgment clouded about world politics because of our raging hormones the same way we might about making out with our ex at a bar because we had too many margaritas and “Careless Whisper” was playing and he was wearing the cologne he wore on our first date. Ahem.
It’s not like that.
I also have been very transparent here about the fact that I vote Democrat because I believe in the values of democracy and the Democratic party: namely, helping people less fortunate than me and giving my money away to help our country’s people rather than keeping as much as possible for me and the other rich people who want to keep their money. I like social services and I believe it is my job as a human on this planet to be of service to others.
That being said, I don’t always love what “liberal politics” does. I don’t agree with a lot of the Republican-shaming that is going on with this campaign. I do not think that Donald Trump is a qualified candidate for any political office (or for many non-political offices either to be quite frank…) and I find his opinions about walling off Mexico and demonizing an entire group of people with a particular religious belief to be diabolical, dangerous and disturbing. That people support him is astounding to me and – as someone whose family and whose people have survived persecution and oppression for thousands of years – it scares me.
However! If you want to be a Republican, it’s your right. As a liberal, I get to let you have your beliefs even if I don’t agree with them. And you can talk about your asinine beliefs even if I don’t want you to. That’s my America.
When Donald Trump talked about abortion and taking away my right to my body, I lost my sh*t. Sorry to curse about it, but in case you missed it, here is me losing my sh*t over Donald Trump and abortion. I will probably lose my sh*t about Trump many more times before this year is over. But I believe that everyone has a right to his or her beliefs and the right to state them, even if they don’t fit in with my liberal views.
I get upset when I hear liberals sounding less tolerant than the conservatives they claim to hate! I am all for debate and educating people about my perspectives but this is not a liberal country and it never will be. It’s a country full of all kinds of people and that’s fine with me.
Some people apparently send their kids to school in Donald Trump hats and I don’t know if we should make them take their hat off simply because non-Trump supporters at the school are threatening to walk out because of it. If someone wants to show support for Trump on a hat, is it the same as if they showed up with an inciting, racist hate speech on their hat? Is it the same as a swastika on a hat? I happen to think it’s not the same. It’s a hat with the name of a candidate who says a lot of things that many of us find abhorrent. But it’s not illegal to support him.
I already feel exhausted by this campaign. The resistance to electing a woman simply because she is a woman and the narrative of people believing that a woman cannot be president annoys me, Trump’s attitude and the fact that he says horrible bigoted things annoys me, liberals with no tolerance for people being Republican annoy me, Bernie not stepping down for what I think is the good of the party annoys me; everything annoys me right now.
Except democracy. I love that we have a vote and a voice. I love that it is a country where – more than most countries – we have freedom of speech and press. I know it’s not perfect here, but visit a lot of countries in this world and you’ll find activists and civilians arrested and jailed and killed with no due process for even questioning the government, and you’ll find artists killed for creating political cartoons about the government.
I’ll take America. I’ll take this wacky system and this annoying election over that other kind of society any day; any year.
I’ll also take Hillary, who is making history as we speak. In the words of Jesus Jones’ song about a different time in history when the world was waking up, ” Right here, right now. There is no other place I’d rather be.”