Hillary, It’s Not About You

Focusing on Hillary Clinton’s e-mails is part of Trump’s effort to create confusion as we head into the 2020 election. But the response she has come up with, proclaiming she is right and that she only lost the 2016 election because of Russian propaganda is as narcissistic a position as Trump’s tweets.

Alex Hinton is an anthropologist who studies the causes of mass violence and genocide. Here are some of his thoughts on our current situation:

There are six reasons why Americans should prepare for the worst. First, the political, social, and economic situation in the US is deeply unstable. Such instability is a leading factor in all the robust models that researchers have developed over the past few decades to assess the risk of atrocities (including crimes against humanity, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and genocide). In the atrocity-risk model used by the United Nations, the US checks several boxes: in addition to a runaway pandemic, it is experiencing economic distress, high unemployment, mass protests, natural disasters, and ever-deepening political polarization. The presence of just one or two of these factors would be alarming enough; the US features more than a half-dozen.

I know many people who refused to vote period in 2016 because Hillary Clinton did not present a viable alternative to Trump. I only voted because I feel it is my civic duty. If I cannot be bothered to vote, I have thrown away my right to criticize the government.

I voted against Trump in 2016. I did not vote for Hillary Clinton. And that is because the Democratic party was the party of white intellectual elitism in 2016. Barack Obama had been their token black boy, and once he was out of the way they wanted to go right back to business as usual, completely ignoring the profound symptoms of social distress and the social turmoil that results from that distress.

If the Democratic party had been willing to address the social issues roiling this country in 2016, we would not be in the situation we are in now. Instead,they sat back in a state of complacent superiority focusing on maintaining the status quo. That is how the Democratic party has lost credibility as well as votes.

If Hillary Clinton cannot find it in herself to express some compassion and concern for her fellow Americans, if she cannot find it in herself to support the woman that may end up in the vice-presidential seat, if she cannot admit her arrogance and mistakes that allowed her e-mails to become a bone of contention in the first place, she should at least sit back and shut up, not pour fuel on the flames of social unrest.

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