Unless the polls are wrong, on the evening of November 8, at 7 p.m. pacific time, the TV will announce that America has elected its first female president. It's a historic moment. But for a candidate who will make history, Hillary Clinton sure finds herself on the wrong side of it a lot.
Much of life is confusing, but a few things have always been clearly right or wrong: things like slavery and a woman's right to vote. But Clinton has consistently picked the side that looks boneheaded in retrospect, and usually looked wrong even at the time. It's almost as if she had been pro-slavery until 1960 and anti-women voting until 1919. Here are some examples:
Anyone with half a mind can see that marijuana isn’t a threat, isn't a health hazard, and doesn't wreck your brain. But, somehow, not Hillary Clinton. She often ducks marijuana questions for this reason. Except in 2007, when she said: "I don't think we should decriminalize it." In 2014, she again said she was against legalization claiming, "I don't think we've done enough research yet." For thousands of years people have smoke pot, including our first three presidents and our last three — but we need more research? Asked in 2014 if she'd try it, she said "absolutely not." Which is just sad. You're saying we haven't done enough research. Be brave. Do your own. Her husband has.
This one may is the least forgivable. She voted for the Iraq War, a historic clusterfuck that screwed us, our vets, and the world for 13 plus years now. And anyone with a conscience should have known, even in the crazy days after 9/11, that you can't just go invading people for no reason, that what you learned on the kindergarten playground applies to the Oval Office: you can't hit someone if they didn't hit your first.
She never denied it was happening. But in 50 years, when Miami is underwater, she's not going to look heroic. She supported offshore drilling. Her foundation takes money from big oil. She won't answer questions on the Keystone pipeline, saying, "I've been clear that I'm not going to express an opinion on that," which is actually a very unclear thing to say. And she just hasn't made a big deal about climate change this year. Which isn't wrong, exactly, but it's not genius, either.
Only the coldest, most religious bastards thought gay marriage was wrong. But until very recently, Clinton opposed it. In 2004, she called marriage "a sacred bond between a man and a woman." In 2007, she told a gay-oriented TV channel she opposed same sex marriage. Most of that time, she said she supported Civil Unions, which are cute little Marriage Lite legal arrangements. You get a certificate and everything. Then, in 2013, when it had become popular and so obviously the right thing, she finally decided she was for it. She's like the kid in high school who comes to the defense of the fat kid after the bullies have already left.
Barring something crazy happening, Hillary Clinton will be the first woman president. But she won't look like a sage, or a thinker, or a particularly courageous or moral leader. She'll look like the typical politician who took stand after stand because it was the politically easy thing to do, rather than what her heart must have told her was right.
She’ll make history. But she sure has been historically wrong.