So some of it may seem familiar if you read the first essay, but there's new stuff for those who saw it the first time around, and, for those who didn't, I hope you enjoy it! Here's an excerpt:
One of the pervasive (and inexplicable) storylines of this election has been that there is "low enthusiasm" for Hillary Clinton.Head on over to read the whole thing.
This is, of course, entirely false. A candidate does not get to be a major party's presidential nominee if they inspire little enthusiasm — and Clinton certainly wouldn't break a 227-year barrier against female nominees if there was no enthusiasm for her candidacy.
One of the ways this narrative has been perpetuated is simply by invisibilizing the evident enthusiasm with which she is greeted at every campaign stop. A browse through her Flickr account shows a campaign that looks very different from what we are typically shown by the corporate media.
It also matters that among her legions of enthusiastic voters are countless older women, whose representation across all media is inexcusably scant.
...Older women occupy a very particular space in our culture — a space frequently defined by an abandonment of listening. Rather than valuing the lived experiences of older women, and the wisdom those lives have imparted, we turn away from them, dismissing them as irrelevant; we neglect to listen, just at the moment where they may offer insights most profoundly worth listening to.
...Clinton has a voice. And people listen to it. She has experience, which people respect. She has knowledge, and it is widely valued.
This is not the typical experience of older women, who are devalued at the intersection of misogyny and ageism, and whatever other parts of their identity (race, disability, body size, sexuality, gender) are used to devalue us, too.
Witnessing Hillary Clinton, an older woman, fight her way to get into the most exclusive boys' club on the planet, and seeing her succeed, inching ever closer, is exciting. And more than that: It is validating.