A week ago today, I mentioned that in order to stand a chance, Hillary Clinton would need to pursue Barack Hussein Obama on two fronts — (1) Attack Obama’s lack of substance by citing his use of empty rhetoric while touting her own experience, and (2) prey upon the regrettable ignorance of the voting public by dredging up Obama’s Muslim heritage in this, a fragile global climate.
I knew it would happen, but I didn’t expect it to happen so soon.
First, Clinton has been taking a sarcastic tone and actually mocking Obama’s lack of substance. “I could just stand up here and say ‘Let’s just get everybody together, let’s get unified,’” Clinton said during a rally in Providence, R.I. “The sky will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing and the world will be perfect.”
The text alone does not do her sarcasm any justice.
I love watching the Democratic party implode. I hope she takes her candidacy to the convention and wins the nomination on superdelegates alone, thus showing that the Democratic party is anything but. It won’t happen–I think Obama has got it all but wrapped up–but the drama and sarcasm makes for wonderful daydreams.
Secondly, Hillary’s campaign may or may not have been behind the release of a 2006 photograph showing Barack Hussein Obama in traditional Somali garb. Obama, who has family rooted in Islam but is himself Catholic, had been on a five-country tour of Africa when the photo was taken.
Other politicans wear indigenous clothing while traveling — immediately coming to mind is Nancy Pelosi and her Hajib while visiting Syria last year, and Clinton herself donned a headcovering during many visits to the Middle East. Still, the photo does its job.
Should this account be true, should Clinton staffers be behind the dissemination of the shot, the desperation on the part of Hillary’s campaign has hit a fever pitch early. Should this account be true, the very same woman who just months ago denounced Rudy Giuliani’s references to the September 11, 2001 attacks in campaign commercials and stump speeches has now embraced Islamophobia as a campaign strategy.
Is it wrong? Sure, it is.
When I mentioned the “ignorance” portion of the two-fold strategy for Clinton, I did my best to explain that Americans’ bias in such areas is regrettable. America has come extremely far since women fought for the right to vote and since Martin Luther King, Jr. shared his dream — the Democratic candidate for President of the United States WILL be either a black man or a woman. Still, I hope that Americans can get past skin color and genitalia configuration and, sooner rather than later, see people for their policies, ideas, and character instead.
Is it effective? Of course.
Like it or not, we are at war with radical Islam. While memories of 9/11 are not as fresh in the minds of Americans as I think they should be, many people in this country are leery of people with a middle eastern background. The name “Barack Hussein Obama” is a hurdle in and of itself; photos which in essence put a face to a name with regard to any vacillation can only have an effect upon his candidacy.
Regardless of fairness or efficacy, this shows the current state of the Clinton campaign. She needs to win either Ohio or Texas–preferably both–in order to even continue. Recent polls are showing that she would be easily beaten in a general election by Sen. John McCain, whereas Obama would beat the Arizona senator in a landslide. For that reason alone, I hope she surprises a lot of people and pulls out a win. Obama, turban or not, will be difficult to stop come November.