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Why Hillary Clinton Should Be Next American President from A Nigerians Perspective

Hillary Clinton is the only candidate with the multi-theme and multi-issue campaign that can easily move to the centre (while maintaining her progressive vision) and unite the people. This is because the centre is about the politics of multi-issues, multi-themes and never about a single narrative. This is why Secretary Hillary Clinton should be the next President of the United States of America.

The global prominence of United States of America justifies global interests in her elections. The U.S. is one of the few countries in the world where every nationality, ethnicity, race and culture in the world is represented quantitatively and qualitatively as a demography. In other words, it is one of the most diverse countries in the world. And, that is a global pride and strength.

When you hear the phrase “We Americans… ” and you raise your head to see who are talking, what you see are a unity-seeking rainbow of faces from all cultures, nationalities, ethnicities, races and countries in the world.

Except the few global cynics and the very few who belong to the condemnable evil axis of terrorism, no citizen of the world wants America to fail. Just as America invests in other countries, the world also invests in America. No other country in the world commands these positive feelings and global interests.

This is why I maintain two positions. First, that it is in the domestic, national and global interests of the U.S., the interest of her economy and citizens, the health of her domestic politics, her rich and vibrant multi-culturalism, and her place in the global world that a democrat, rather than a republican, returns to the White House as president after the term of the incumbent, Barak Obama. Second, I hold the view, with good and defensible reasons, that that democrat should be former Secretary Hillary Clinton and not Senator Bernie Sanders.

My reasons are derived from the competition in the primaries of the two parties and the projection of the eventual election between the candidate of the Democratic Party and that of the Republican Party.

First are the primaries. Within both the Democratic and Republican primaries, there is a national and global danger of a single theme, a single issue, and a single narrative of essentially diverse experiences within America by some of the candidates such as Senator Bernie Sanders, and Mr. Donald Trump of the Republican party.

For Republicans who have been voting for Donald Trump in the primaries, this i.e. because he has been running an “anti-establishment” campaign! But American Republican voters will be courting a major disaster for the country and the world if an “anti-establishment” candidate such as Mr. Trump (who is grossly ignorant of issues-both domestic and global, grossly deficient in policy-making, lacking in knowledge and experience in public affairs, and who re-tweeted a racist supremacist tweet from a racist supremacist group only to claim “ignorance” of its source) is made their candidate for a major election.

It will be damaging for the Republican Party and for America, nationally and globally, if the party puts a race supremacist forward as the face of America. With Mr. Trump as their candidate, the American Republicans will be raising Xenophobia into a bad article of faith and a poor art of governance.

If Mr. Donald Trump ever becomes president – based on his serial appeal to ignorance as a defence on claims he consciously makes – its possible he could press the nuclear and atomic button to unleash a war on the world, while claiming ignorance as a defence that he thought the button was a beautiful toy.

Senator Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton’s opponent on the Democratic side is a different ball game. A self-confessed “democratic” socialist, presumably leading what he calls a “political revolution”, Sanders’ campaign has been popular among some Americans because of a single issue he framed as “economic inequality”.

However, Sanders’ single narrative of American challenges is the wrong and false mechanical interpretation of more complex economic and social problems. Economic determinism and interpretation of things in the world is characteristic of some form of socialist thinking. Given America’s diverse challenges, such strict deterministic (economic) view of American social and political problems is too simplistic because it lacks other variables; hence it is inadequate because there are more complex historical factors, such as racism and gender that have caused inequalities in American society.

But Senator Sander’s single issue and single theme politics is understandable. It is the regular economic deterministic politics of most socialist politicians who see racial identity, gender identity, and religious identity as “secondary” and as “false consciousness”, a second thought even though the typical socialist may also be covertly conscious of the advantages conferred by his/her race and gender identity!

Senator Sanders’ politics and campaign is derived from and represents this historically flawed and problematic “socialist” call for how race, religion and gender identities can be called forms of false consciousness – as some theoretical Marxist thought would want it – when race, gender, and religious identities are historically rooted and have been used to entrench and perpetuate heinous crimes and evil in most of global history?

This is why Senator Sanders’s single theme and narrative politics shuts the window against the unacceptable inequality engendered by race and gender and other forms that precede class and economic inequality. The typical western socialist politician talks colour, race and gender opportunistically and in a patronising manner as a last resort only when he or she needs votes from the marginalised communities.

The western socialist politicians are visible and found in the battle reigning curses on economic and class inequality, while they are invisible, mute and lost in the battle against race and gender inequality. But historically, some people are already made unequal because of their race and gender before they enter the distorted economic sphere socialist politicians like Mr. Sanders rightly talk about. Unfortunately, Bernie Sander’s politics, which is typical of economic determinism in Marxist and socialist thinking, cannot apprehend that structurally hidden huge swathe of inequality motivated by just the way one looks -race and gender.

Sanders fires canons at Wall Street (this is correct because Wall Street is a major part of American problems) and what he calls “political establishment” in his campaign against Hillary Clinton. Though Sanders is right in his criticism of “wall street” however, it is curious that as he an “anti-establishment” candidate is raising more campaign money than his opponent who he deliberately painted as an “establishment candidate” for votes and campaign purposes!

If Sanders rages against the influence of money in politics, how does he resolve and explain the fact that he has more money to spend (and he has been spending this massively on the same politics and campaign) than his opponent – Hillary Clinton – who he has accused of being responsible for the negative influence of money in politics?

Or is that to Mr. Sanders, so long as the money is for Mr. Sanders it is okay? Or is it that when it is Mr. Sanders who is spending the money massively on politics and campaign, it does not corrupt the system? Or is it that some type of political corruption is preferable (so far it is from the “socialists” and from Mr. Sanders)? One is used to this form of self-righteousness in politics and politicking. But who makes that judgment? Who draws that distinction?

And to think that America’s problems begin and end with Wall Street and the “political establishment” as Bernie Sanders does in his articulation of American problems show a lack of depth and highly simplistic understanding of more historically complex problems.

Both Sanders and Trump attack what they see as “political establishment” from both the right and the left. This is why anyone on the left of the political spectrum ought to be introspective and skeptical of the campaign of Bernie Sander because when the two flanks are united in their “anti-establishment” politics and campaign, then the voters on the left side of the spectrum need to be very careful about a candidate, who claims to be both democrat and “anti-establishment”. A vote for Mr. Sanders who is running in the primaries as a democrat may actually be a vote for Mr. Trump of the Republican Party.

So, it is problematic as it is suppressing, to collapse problems of historical proportions and of diverse historical sources into one single theme – economic inequality as Senator Bernie Sanders – Hillary Clinton’s opponent in the democratic primaries -sometimes naively does because Americans do not live within a single theme, issue or narrative.

This explains why Secretary Hillary Clinton’s politics and campaign is anchored on the historically relevant multi-issue, multi-theme, and multi-narrative campaign. Clinton’s politics and campaign rest on the intersection of economic inequality, race, gender, environment, age diversity, sexual orientation etc. A single theme and single narrative will fail to address these intersections which are no doubt influenced by economic factors.

To solve these problems, you need a multi-narrative, multi-issue, a multi-theme approach, which is largely what the politics of Hillary Clinton is about. In other words, Hillary Clinton is opposed to economic inequality on its own and in its intersections with other forms of inequality in the United States of America and in the world. Such intersections are not afterthought for Hillary Clinton’s politics and strategy. On the contrary, given his strict economistic interpretation of the problems, intersections such as race, gender, orientations are afterthoughts for Bernie Sanders politics.

On another issue, the ugliness of sexism in American politics is real. This has shown itself despite the fact that Hillary Clinton is the most qualified person to be the next American president. It is surprising how sections of American media talk about Secretary Clinton’s voice and the same media are blind to the clenched fists and raised hands of the male politicians across both parties – Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio etc. This sexism against Hillary Clinton reminds me of the racist stereotypes in America about the “angry black male” and the “nagging black female” where the “other” male and female (of other races) are never “angry” and they never “nag”!

Sections of the American media must admit that they have been sexist on the campaign trail. With their sexism, the media run the risk of misleading the American public and help give the election to any of the other candidates both in the Democratic party and Republican party all of who are ill equipped to govern given what we are seeing in the primaries.

Finally, Americans and democrats especially ought to begin to look beyond the primaries and towards the big election itself. And because of the somewhat divisive manner in which Mr. Sanders and his groups have gone ahead to demonise everyone (even within the Democratic Party on whose platform he is running) who does not agree with them (and this is characteristic of extreme left politics), it would do the democrats within and outside the Democratic Party a lot of good to begin to think of unity now. Neither side should allow the Republican Party to win the election as a result of disunity within the Democratic Party.

This is because of the highly divisive campaigns of Mr. Sanders, which in the big election may not attract Americans beyond his extreme left groups. And this is not good for the Democratic Party; it is not good for America and the common people who Mr. Sanders claims to defend. America needs the Democratic Party to retain government in order to continue the excellent works of the Democratic Party and President Barak Obama who met an unemployment rate of 13 percent, which President Bush and the Republican Party inflicted on the country, and he down to 5 percent presently.

So, given the now heavily polarised ideological divide in America, the question is: who is the candidate that will be able to move to the centre and unite America? Extremes do not unite a country. It will be difficult for the two extremes – Donald Trump, from the right and Bernie Sanders from the left to shift to the centre and unite Americans on issues.

Hillary Clinton is the only candidate with the multi-theme and multi-issue campaign that can easily move to the centre (while maintaining her progressive vision) and unite the people. This is because the centre is about the politics of multi-issues, multi-themes and never about a single narrative. This is why Secretary Hillary Clinton should be the next President of the United States of America.

No one can govern effectively on a single-issue platform. Successful governance is based on a multi-issue platform. Hillary Clinton is the owner of that multi-issue, multi-narrative, multi-theme platform – hence she should be the next president and Commander in Chief of the United States of America.

OPINION 

Adeolu Ademoyo is with the Africana Studies and Research Center, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

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