When I think of women who are exemplary mothers, Hillary Clinton does not come to mind. She may even be at the bottom of such a list. But to hear first lady Michelle Obama tell it on Monday night at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia — and then Bill Clinton again on Tuesday night — Hillary Clinton is the chief mother figure. And if she is elected president, we should all expect to call her either Madame President or Mommy President.
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This is simply part and parcel of the “greatest show on Earth” this week at the DNC.
FLOTUS regaled the delegates with fuzzy musings about Clinton’s child-rearing abilities (she said she raised Chelsea Clinton “to perfection”), and her willingness to enter the fight to end bullying, bigotry, and childhood poverty. Michelle Obama said she could happily point to Hillary Clinton as the right person to lead this “village” that will help bring up the next generation of Americans — referring, of course, to Clinton’s 1996 book, “It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us.”
Said Michelle Obama, “With every word we utter, with every action we take, we know our kids are watching us. We as parents are their most important role models. And let me tell you, Barack and I take that same approach to our jobs as president and first lady, because we know that our words and actions matter, not just to our girls, but [to] the children across this country, kids who tell us, ‘I saw you on TV, I wrote a report on you for school.'”
Yes, Mrs. Obama, the children are watching — and wondering why the Democrats are trying to feed them a bill of goods. Children want to know why Hillary said in her Benghazi testimony that her words and actions didn’t really matter. “At this point, what does it matter?” she said after four Americans lost their lives when Islamists stormed the American embassy in Libya.
The children want to know how Hillary can support and endorse third-trimester abortions and consider a fully formed baby not yet human. They are waiting for an explanation on why she supports opening up all bathrooms to people of either sex under the guise of transgender rights — thereby making our children fair game to pedophiles and sex offenders.
Every kid also knows that great moms at least know how to use email correctly.
The children want to know how she understands what it is like to go to bed hungry and to seldom see their parents because those moms and dads are working multiple jobs just to keep a roof over their heads. Meanwhile, the Clintons charge millions of dollars for speaking engagements and pay their daughter a six-figure salary for running the Clinton Foundation.
And on a lighter note, every kid knows that great moms at least know how to use email correctly.
Hillary Clinton is not the woman Michelle Obama portrayed in her speech. She knows it and Clinton knows it. She tried to pass off Clinton’s dogged determination to achieve the highest office in the land as nothing more than Clinton’s dedication to public service.
The flowery love story presented in Bill Clinton’s own speech on Tuesday evening — rather than painting Hillary as the sacrificial mother — instead revealed her tenacity to keep climbing, keep striving for personal gain. Perhaps the goal was to humanize his wife, to make her more like regular Americans. The message, though, was that Hillary is relentless in her pursuit of political fame and was a mother in her spare time, which was little to none.
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Michelle Obama said Hillary “never quits.” That is true. When Bill Clinton, first as governor and then president, showed his true character with multiple episodes of infidelity, Hillary stayed. She didn’t quit — not because they had a solid marriage worth fighting for, but because he was a rising star that put her on the right trajectory.
When she ran for and lost the nomination for president eight years ago, she didn’t quit. Was it because she had a servant’s heart and wanted nothing more than to see the success of her country? No — it was more because she wanted nothing more than her own success and had not yet reached the summit.
When I think of women who have been great mothers, I see that they have one attribute in common: A great mother puts herself last. The needs of her children are first and foremost in her mind when she wakes up each and every day, even when they are grown and have left home for a life of their own. Great mothers exhibit grace, humility, and strength in the storm.
These are not characteristics I have seen in the political life of Hillary Clinton.
The American public is sick and tired of a steady diet of platitudes about the fine stature of political leaders — leaders who say one thing and do another. We are sick and tired of the Obamas and the Clintons, of Elizabeth Warren and Tim Kaine, with their lies, their cover-ups, and their self-serving intentions.
And that’s why Donald Trump’s campaign has been so appealing — he has embraced the straight-talking, honest-to-goodness truth.
Mark Christian, M.D., is the founder and executive director of the Global Faith Institute (globalfaith.org), an Egyptian émigré to the United States and a convert to Christianity.