Any way I try to see it, there will be a bunch of angry and disappointed Democrats in the near future. On the one hand, there is Senator Clinton, and on the other hand there is Senator Obama. And since liberals view everything through the prism of group identity instead of individuals, that means the fight for the Democrat presidential nomination is between someone who is a woman, and someone who is black.
Of course there is far more to these candidates than their sex and race, but to liberals who have made sex and race identity so important, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have become visible embodiments of sex and race. And this can be a problem for liberals when group identities collide. Are liberals meant to vote for Clinton because she could be the first woman President, even though she is white; or should they vote for Obama to become the first black President, even though he is male?
You can see this conflict in the way liberal groups are handling the sex/race conflict of Clinton and Obama. When Oprah Winfrey announced that she was supporting Obama, she was labeled a traitor for choosing race over sex. But that’s assuming Obama’s race was more important to Oprah than Clinton’s sex. Could she have chosen to support him for other reasons? That’s not an option if you view everything through the lens of race or sex. Fortunately, not everyone will “vote their race” or “vote their gender,” as some CNN readers have stated.
I’ll say it again — if you vote for Obama primarily because he is black, you are racist. If you vote for Clinton primarily because she is a woman, you are sexist. And if you vote for McCain because he’s a white male, you’re… unusual. (Conservatives tend to focus on issues over identity politics, so I don’t see this as being as much of a concern for conservatives as it is for liberals, but let’s cover all the bases for the sake of equity.)
The race between Clinton and Obama is close, but as I write this, Obama has slightly more delegates than Clinton and appears to have the momentum. But since Texas, Ohio, Vermont, and Rhode Island all have primaries today, the race isn’t over for the two contenders.
Since there can only be one winner in this race (and no, I don’t believe that either candidate would deign to become the other’s VP), half of the Democrat voters in the primaries will be pissed off at the result. Those who view sex as being the most important will be disappointed and angry if yet another man is nominated. Those who view race as being the most important will be disappointed and angry if yet another white is nominated.
Regardless of who gets the nomination, I see a time of anger and resentment for Democrats when the primaries are over. I just don’t see their anger preventing them from finally rallying behind the Democrat nominee when it comes to the national vote in November. On the other hand, I see many conservatives who are still angry about Senator McCain becoming the Republican nominee, and I don’t believe they will rally in numbers to vote for the party’s choice this year. And that means we will likely have a Democrat President come 2009.