Tuesday, August 26, 2008

How Stories Get Told

I'm sorry, but did I awake in what Seinfeld once called Bizarro world? Has the space-time continuum contorted itself so badly that what's down is left, and what's up is - well - not there?

I was watching the coverage leading up to the much anticipated Senator Hillary Clinton speech Tuesday night. I wanted to hear what all the pundits had to say.

What must She say to help Obama?

How can She get all her supporters into the Obama camp?

However, something else was being discussed that sent me into a mini-cerebral hemorage. This "glass cieling". You know, the proverbial foot on women's necks, forever holding the ladies back from their full potential and participation in this society. Brian Williams was mentioning how that glass ceiling could only get cracked, but not quite broken because of Senator Clinton's loss.

Now, let me not seem too insensitive. Of course, women have it tough in this society. The pay scale's yet to be equalized, single mothers are practically told to go out and find a husband when considering how our government dishes out services to better their lives, and when it comes to the leadership positions in this nation, let's face it, it's a man's world.

But is Senator Clinton one to be held down by what may hold the rest of us back a bit? I told Chris Meehan a year ago that her campaign would be like a freight train, and anyone in the way should really - REALLY - consider moving out of the way. And that's what makes all this talk of glass ceiling seem rather awkward. Senator Obama didn't just beat a lady, he beat the Democratic party. He beat back an establishment that demanded he get in line and wait his turn.

Senator Clinton might've been the first "viable" woman to run for President, but her viability was evident at least since 2000, and her run for the highest office even before then. A glass ceiling would not have been broken with a Clinton win anymore than racial unity will come to full fruition with an Obama win. It's as if for the sake of the narrative, let's forget the steep mountain Senator Obama climbed and instead consider Senator Clinton as the underdog who almost made it.

Like Andrew Jackson preached, "To the Victor, Go the Spoils". The body count has yet to been seen, as reported by Matt Bai in this piece, in the wake of an Obama victory (or Clinton loss). There has been a seismic shift in Democratic politics that has opened the door for a younger generation with fresh ideas and vigor. Let's not belittle Senator Clinton by making it seem as though this loss places her in the back burner. And I won't let others forget something equally important, that Barack Obama is running for a place in not just a man's world, but The Man's establishment. And he'll probably win.

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