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  • Why I’m Not Over the Hill

    By “the hill”, I mean Hillary Clinton. I am not over her. I am not giving up on her. And as for Hill herself – when will she give up? I think when you hear that crackling sound way off in the distance, and the furious hissing of steam. That would be the sound of hell freezing over.

    With March as Women’s History Month, it’s really easy to slide into lots of platitudes about girl power. Hill doesn’t really go there.

    She epitomizes the core quality which I admire most: resiliency. Hillary bounces back in the face of crushing defeat. When you look back over her presence in the public eye during the past two decades, she has endured loss and defeat. Oh, the shame — yet the talk on the Hill these days is that she might swap jobs with Joe Biden and run alongside President Obama as his stalwart VP. Well, I can dream can’t I …?

    On a policy level, her health care crusade was a colossal disappointment. It is shameful that millions more Americans today cannot provide adequate health insurance coverage for themselves and their families, especially as more Americans are separated from conventional 9-to-5 jobs with employer benefits packages.

    Pundits of every stripe even take delight in skewering Hillary for her wardrobe, notably her solidly square pantsuits in every color, and her awkward choices of coiffure. Feminists insist that role of the First Lady or Secretary of State is not a beauty pageant contestant, and that the White House is not a fashion show. In a sense, I must disagree. Especially now in the digital age, when images of the First Lady are sent around the world faster than your hair can stick to your lip-gloss. This connectivity is a powerful opportunity for the quintessential American woman to tell women everywhere who we are.

    Who is she? Hillary is a Goddess. Let’s see — Artemis, known as Diana to the Romans, was a virgin huntress. She wore fierce leather archery braces on her arms and shins as she moved through the forests beneath the moon. Not exactly a fashion-plate or a seductress, but one bad mammer-jammer with that bow and arrow.

    Athena, patroness of Athens, known to the Romans as Minerva, wasn’t born in a conventional, female, fleshy way. She sprang, as a full-formed miniature woman, fully clad in armor, from the knee, or head (depending on the version of the myth), of her father, Mighty Zeus — no mother present. Oh, and Athena was also a virgin. No hubby, baby-daddy or cozy momming in this goddess profile.

    Though perhaps no sex-bomb, Hillary is indeed a wife and mother. But she brings that fierceness of the virgin huntress and civic warrior to her bearing as Secretary of State. It’s also worth mentioning that Hill and Bill seem to have treated the timing of parenthood strategically, a key lesson which I reinforce when I speak to women’s groups. If it’s possible to have it all, I know for sure that you cannot possibly have it all at the same time. Tempo is critical.

    Hill’s been on the bus a long time. She’s been to the mountaintop. She’s been to hell and back. She’s walked the fire-walk. You can see the weariness in the firm set of her mouth. But there’s a cold fire in those eyes, burning on.

    Every woman can take a page from her — she’s a big thinker, a tireless fighter, a protector of justice, and she’s still here. Right on Sister…

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