All you need is hate

Jason Horowitz has written a scary piece in GQ about the hatred that some people feel for Hillary Clinton.

By now, Clinton’s flaws as a candidate are well-known—the problems giving a straight answer, the warmth and authenticity issues—but they’re also fairly typical for a politician. Here in Dallas, though, and in the rest of anti-Hillary land, the hostility toward Clinton tends to be expressed in bafflingly vague and emotional terms. Discussions with self-declared enemies of Hillary Clinton, prominent and not, across the country yield a head-spinning barrage of motivations for their ill will, but one thing is immediately clear: Few if any have anything to do with the mandated insurance coverage of Clinton’s health care plan (or HillaryCare, in hater parlance), her carefully triangulated position on Iran, or her incremental shift against the war in Iraq.

Instead, they say she is an extremist left-wing flower child masquerading as a moderate, or a warmongering hawk disguised as a liberal. She’s a liar and a lesbian (short hair! pantsuits!), a cold fish and an adulteress. She has no maternal instincts and is hobbled by a debilitating case of insecurity, for which she compensates by acting like a thug. She is the spineless wife of a habitual cheat, and the willful enabler of her husband’s affairs. She’s in politics to keep Bill around, and she ran for the Senate, and then the presidency, to exact revenge for his philandering. She has no God, or her devoutness is frighteningly fundamentalist. She’s a condescending elitist who sees people—even her friends—as steps on a stairway to the presidency. She is a partisan, a panderer, the personification of everything that is wrong with America.

She is, to them, an empty vessel into which they can pour everything they detest about politicians, ambitious women, and an American culture they fear is being wrested from their control.

“The closest analogy”, writes Stanley Fish in the NYT,

“is to anti-Semitism. But before you hit the comment button, I don’t mean that the two are alike either in their significance or in the damage they do. It’s just that they both feed on air and flourish independently of anything external to their obsessions. Anti-Semitism doesn’t need Jews and anti-Hillaryism doesn’t need Hillary, except as a figment of its collective imagination. However this campaign turns out, Hillary-hating, like rock ‘n’ roll, is here to stay.

All of which means that, if Hillary becomes president, some of these loons will try to assassinate her.