RE: “Clinton’s Gradual Education on Issues of Race” (New York Times 2/2/08)
Mark Leibovich’s article offers an excellent example of how the American media too often discourages us from looking at our individual and collective ignorance in the areas of racism, sexism and classism—to name only a few of our “isms.” The fact that Senator Clinton grew from being an oblivious child to a committed champion of civil rights for all does not make her less reliable. It makes her a model. Leibovich’s claim that Clinton’s “first 25 years were arguably more central to shaping her views” than her last 35 in public service suggests that we are each held captive by our youth, our potential fated accordingly. Articles such as this silence us all by discouraging dialogue about where we come from and what our experiences have been. We need media that cultivates—rather than inhibits—our national conversation. Show me the male candidate for president that has not had a “gradual education” on the issue of sexism. Is he to be trusted?
(Letter to the editor, which the New York Times did not choose for publication)
(Thanks to “The Laundry Room” for inspiring this musing)