Unlike her opponent, Hillary Clinton (D) has avoided any ‘controversial’ comments during this election cycle. Speaking from the more sensible and reasonable side of things, Clinton has positioned herself as a career public servant who has the ideal skills for the job. A job that entails not only being quite literally the face of a nation, but its voice to the world as well. Last week, Clinton used that voice, at a LGBT gala in her honor to degrade half the voting population in this country.
Speaking at the event in New York City, Clinton was commended for her involvement and support of the LGBT community. Attendees ranged from donors to celebrity elites such as Barbra Streisand and Wall Street cronies, and the event seemed to go off without any incident.
However, a video was released of the private fundraiser, in which Clinton said “…you could be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what [Clinton] calls the basket of deplorables…The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic—you name it.” My question to Clinton after this comment is quite simple: what ever happened to being the voice of reason?
Clinton says she speaks to and for the people of the United States but such a general tone and name-calling is anything but unifying. In fact, it’s exactly that ‘generalist’ ideology and rhetoric that has turned this election into nothing more than a mud-slinging contest. One in which whoever says the more outrageous or more polarizing thing becomes front-page news.
Although inciting a laugh from the crowd which is to be expected from such a liberal event, these polarizing comments completely delegitimize Clinton’s image as the truly ‘sensible and reasonable candidate’. By not maintaining her organized and official demeanor that sets her apart from other candidates in the race, Clinton makes herself look foolish. If anything is deplorable, it’s Clinton implying half of the voting Republican base basically uneducated, uncivilized and moreover unaccepting. Clinton spoke at this very event that supports ‘inclusion’ and ‘equality’ for members of the LGBTQ community. However, it is completely contradictory to be worthy of such support. Not only was Clinton’s husband the one who put the Defense of Marriage Act into law in the late 90’s, she vehemently supported and spoke in favor of the measure as it was moving through Congress. Even when running in the New York Senate race, Clinton continued to be relatively impartial on the issue of marriage equality. But this is nothing new for a candidate who will say whatever it takes to get elected. And for one time, it isn’t Donald Trump.
For the better part of a year, Clinton has been on the campaign trail doing what she does best; selling her brand. Through painstakingly scripted events, speeches, hand gestures and personality, Clinton has reached an all-time low. Compounded with the fact she has continuously been caught pandering and switching her stances and opinions solely for political gain, this further detracts from her overall credibility as a candidate. More than just switching her stances to appeal to a particular group or policy, Clinton has forgone all political reason and quite plainly has stooped to Trump’s level. It’s bad enough that this race has featured a candidate who doesn’t necessarily have “radical” policies so much as a radical mouth, but for Clinton to now fight vitriol with vitriol, it’s unacceptable.
Reminded of the 2012 election and Mitt Romney’s “47 percent” comments Clinton should learn from this fast. And in a contentious enough election as it is, these comments will only further divide rather than unite, polarizing both bases further into fervor. But perhaps the real tragedy lies in the fact we have as a nation in just 12 short months become accustom to this kind of slanderous and caustic politics, where character attacks substitute as fact and where name-calling garners respect and admiration like that of a specter of a bully on a playground. It’s a disturbing precedent. One that could totally change how elections will be run for years to come. Let’s pray that never happens.
Clinton’s experience as a politician has shown throughout her use of teleprompters, pandering and as of last week, a total disregard for half of the voting base in this country.
Nick Guarna is a contributor for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.