I needed a drink that night. I do most nights, but that night especially. It was June 3, 2008, and Barack Obama was giving his victory speech in St. Paul, Minnesota, announcing he had gained enough delegate support to secure the Democratic nomination. The possibility of a first-ever black president thrills me, I’ll admit, but that night I couldn’t see that far. I kept thinking about Hillary Clinton and what could have been.
You should have gotten some sleep, should have told Bill to relax. Maybe it was the time you cried after Iowa that turned people off? They said you were trying too desperately to seem human. A strong, ambitious, brilliant woman (read: bitch) who is clear on what she wants and how she has to fight to get it must not be human, I guess. Tina Fey said it best: “Bitches get stuff done.” To focus on your gender is to oversimplify you. In fact, that’s precisely why your strategy was flawed from the very beginning—trying to convince the world that being a woman was not a hurdle in becoming commander-in-chief. Clearly, it’s not. Take a look around, sister: Chile, Argentina, Liberia. Had you focused more on your résumé and less on your gender we wouldn’t be here. Or maybe we would be. One thing is certain: that Bobby Kennedy reference officially meant you had lost your mind. I didn’t judge you. I knew you wanted it that bad. But now this race is over.
The good news is martyrdom sure does wonders for people. Look at Gore, he finally found his cause. I only pray you do the same. The world needs you. And just as I’m having these thoughts, Barack said something beautiful, “We should be proud,” he said of his formidable opponent. “Senator Hillary Clinton has made history in this campaign. She has made history not just because she’s a woman who has done what no woman has done before, but because she is a leader.” And that’s exactly what we need. Not a white woman or a black man. A leader. It was never about race or gender to me. It was about who had the most qualifications. Who had the grit to fix the almost irreparable damage (domestic and international) wrought by Bush and his cronies. And I always felt she was.
It’s important for me to say that I was never anti-Obama. How could I be? I’m educated. I’m a minority. I appreciate good rhetoric. I’m just hoping it turns into action. What I am opposed to is people not having voted for Hillary because she’s a so-called bitch and people voting for Barack because he’s the cool kid. I could’ve punched Alicia Keys at the BET Awards when at the end of her acceptance speech she went, “Obama y’aaall!” like she was bigging up Lil Wayne for selling a million albums. I think I heard Obama himself cringe that night. After all, change is serious business.