The 1988 Democratic National Convention which was held in Atlanta, Georgia is mostly remembered for a boring introduction speech of the Democratic nominee, Michael Dukakis, then governor of Massachusetts. That introduction was given by a little known governor from the state of Arkansas, William Jefferson Clinton. Bill Clinton was basically booed as the audience, the media, and convention organizers were wondering when his horrible introduction would conclude. Michael Dukakis went on to lose to George Herbert Walker Bush. Ironically, four years later, George H.W. Bush would lose to that governor who gave that boring introduction speech of the man Bush had beaten handily in 1988. Bill Clinton’s First Lady was Hillary Clinton. The years that ensued are well documented and investigated. The First Lady was put in charge of attempting to overhaul the nation’s health care system. Bill Clinton was impeached in his second term. Nevertheless, he was acquitted. The World Trade Centers were first attacked during Clinton’s first term in 1993. American Embassies were later simultaneously bombed in Kenya and Tanzania. The names Afghanistan, Al-Qaeda, and Osama Bin Ladin began to creep into America’s political discourse; however, these names were drowned out by a more important name at the time, Monica Lewinski.
Hillary Clinton was appointed Secretary of State by President Obama early in 2009. She served in that position until 2013. When she left, it was highly speculated that she would make another run for the White House. Consequently, in the middle of her presidential campaign is where we are today. There are two lingering negatives that have persistently dogged Clinton since she left the State Department. The first has to do with the 2012 attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. Four Americans, including an American Ambassador, were killed in that attack. Republicans have not let us forget that Obama was President and Hillary was Secretary of State during this attack. In June of this year, Congressional Republicans concluded a lengthy and costly investigation into the attack only to conclude that Hillary Clinton could have done better. The incident was tragic in the loss of life. Yet, the attempt to assign blame only aggravated the situation. George W. Bush was President when the Trade Centers were attacked for the second time. This time both towers collapsed. More than two thousand people were killed. Some have conveniently forgotten that Ronald Reagan was President when 241 military personnel were killed by suicide truck bomber in Lebanon in 1983. Most of those killed were Marines. Mary argued that the introduction and the positioning of the force were ill advised. If we decide to not vote for and individual simply because we learn that they are not infallible, no one could run for the presidency. What all these episodes have taught us is that America, even in its omnipotence, has certain vulnerabilities. These are very real regardless as who is President.
Former Secretary of State Clinton has also been followed by a persistent email scandal. Nevertheless, the FBI and the Justice Department concluded that her judgments, in this particular incident, did not rise to the level criminality. Does anyone remember Nixon and Watergate? Does anyone remember Reagan and the Iran-Contra Scandal? In both of these scandals, laws were willfully violated. Despite the Iran-Contra Scandal, former President Reagan has been canonized by the Republican Party. His name is still the name that all Republicans set forth as the last great Republican President despite obvious flaws. The distrust of Hillary Clinton is a sentiment expressed with no foundation or basis other than the fact that she is human. Has any current public figure been investigated and scrutinized more than Hillary Clinton? Yet given all this time and money spent on investigating Mrs. Clinton, what have we to show for it aside from a well vetted candidate with more than enough experience and judgment to become the 45th President of the United States.
Anthony Neal earned his Ph.D. in political science at Atlanta University (now Clark Atlanta University). Dr. Neal is an associate professor at State University College, Buffalo. The author of numerous book reviews and journal articles, he has had his work published in the Western Journal of Black Studies, the Journal of Black Studies, and Black Issues in Higher Education. In 2014 Dr. Neal received the university’s Faculty Appreciation Award, was named Instructor of the Year by the university’s United Student Government, and Professor of the Year by the Student Political Society in the Department of Political Science. In 2015, he published The American Political Narrative which is a succinct yet poignant narrative about the development of the American political system and what is needed to maintain it. In 2016, he will publish a book of poetry entitled “Love Agnostic | from 9/11 to Charleston”
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