Chelsea Clinton, bird-dogging for Momma Clinton
Chelsea Clinton's back in the news, this time for a public letter to her toddlers full of drool and glurge "about our country's future, about your future." Apparently, she takes us for idiots.
Because this confection, published in the anal penetration for teens-advocating Teen Vogue, is about as transparently cynical as such letters come.
Headlined "Chelsea Clinton's Powerful Letter to Her Children Will Make You Bawl" (I kid you not) with Chelsea's mom, Hillary Clinton, doing the guest-editing this month, it begins:
Dear Charlotte & Aidan,
You are the best and most important parts of my life. I love you more than I will ever be able to express and more than you may ever understand. I start this letter with those fundamental truths not because I haven't told you of your centrality to my life or of my love, because I do both every day. I start this letter that way – even if you cringe at the sappiness of it in a few years – because, for me, the 2016 Election was most of all about you and the world I wanted for you and your generation to grow up in. While your grandmother's name was on the ballot, for me, it was an election fundamentally about our country's future, about your future. I am so proud to have campaigned for her – and fought for you.
So a statement of motherly love rapidly morphs into a statement of "the 2016 Election" and "the world I wanted for you and your generation to grow up in,' as if one election result would determine "the world I wanted." World? She then ramps into a campaign stump speech highlighting such endeavors as "fundamentally about our c0untry's future, about your future."
I suppose if you live in the White House amid round-the-clock maid service and Secret Service protection to keep the riff-raff and "deplorables" away, it probably does make a difference in your personal experience. But that sure as heck resonates like a clank on the floor at a ballet performance.
It doesn't get any better. After that, it comes off as Hillary Clinton re-fighting the results of the 2016 election. Chelsea lays the groundwork first by hailing grandmaw Hillary as some sort of miracle-worker, ending poverty, privilege, racism, bad schools and lousy health care wherever she went, starting with Arkansas...
My entire life I have watched your grandmother work for a world in which more children are supported, cared for, encouraged, protected. Where good education, good health care, safe environments, and so much more is not related to privilege, to skin color or to zip code and rather the right and reality for every child, and every family. I saw that in Arkansas as a kid, in the White House as a teenager, in New York as one of her constituents and as an American when she served as our Secretary of State. I heard it in every speech she gave throughout last year.
Then, like a sweaty, fulminating Nixon, she lashes into the reasons Hillary lost the election, grousing about, among other things, news coverage of how Hillary's illegally stored and transmitted emails as well as her cover-up of them from legal investigators dwarfed Hillary's bid to spin the public with her banalities and vague promises. The only thing missing are the cuss words.
She spoke about all she hoped and planned to do to lift up everyone's lives and opportunities. Then she talked about people with racist, sexist, xenophobic, homophobic views that then-candidate Trump emboldened and validated. In 2016, your grandmother was equally fighting for the people who agreed with her and those who didn't – but she wasn't afraid to call out bigoted views for what they were.
Blather. As if anyone would want to vote for that.
After that, Chelsea launches into a political issue laundry list in her tender letter to her toddlers:
When I campaigned for my mom, I did, or at least tried to do, the same – talking about what she wanted to do to strengthen health care quality and access; invest in education from early childhood through college; build a 21st century infrastructure from our underground pipes to our bridges to satellites; her determination to protect a woman's right to choose; her fight for DREAMers; her commitment to advance LGBT equality; and the need to focus on the Supreme Court because it affected all of that and more.
More laundry lists, this time the negative campaign opposition research laundry list:
We have a president who excuses neo-Nazis, who wants to ban members of our military because of who they are and keep out immigrants because of who they worship; that's personal regard-less of our religion, our gender, or where we're from. We have a president who denies science, whether it's vaccines or climate change or evidence that, yes, health insurance helps save lives; that's personal, too, because it's about protecting our public health today and in the future. The marked rise in bullying in our schools, with some kids citing President Trump's words to taunt others? That's personal, too. Protecting children isn't someone else's job; it's all our jobs – even if the president doesn't think it's his.
After that she blathers on her famously banal way about the need to keep fighting or something.
The whole thing is so bad, so transparently a bid to vocalize Momma Hillary's kvetches, to justify her failures and to lace into President Trump, that it was probably written by Hillary herself. Some letter to one's kids. Do normal people write letters like that to their toddlers?
It's nothing but a cynical post-election campaign ad for her mom and a ridiculous reflection on her home life if it's true or more likely a bid to sell more snake oil to the public. It takes a lot of chutzpah to do that, something the Clintons have never lacked.
The pointless "but I was really right" attempt at self-justification amounts to rotting leftovers someone forgot to put in the refrigerator. Nobody up until now does campaign ads after the campaign is over. Did John Kerry? Did John McCain? Did Mitt Romney? Nope. The Clintons' insistence on reliving the campaign comes off as the thing at the window that won't leave.
Instead of telling her kids the actual reality of politics, that the pendulum swings, that some years aren't your years, as experienced politicians will tell their kids and close associates in private, which is what she might write if this were a real letter to her kids, Chelsea would have us think political stump speeches and recriminations are the stuff of tender letters to toddlers.
How stupid does she really think the people she expects to read this and believe this are?