I believe that one of the reasons that Hillary Clinton lost the election was that she “stood by her man” Tammy Wynette style whenever all the scandal came out about Bill’s affairs. At the time, she said it was because “I love him and I respect him”, but Americans have always seem to be ready to find fault with Hillary especially. She was not the first Feminist First Lady. There have been quite a few, but there could be parallels drawn between the Clintons and the Hardings. Warren, like Bill, did the infidelity and Florence advised the President what to do and put up with the affairs, as I imagine Hillary did. I am not sure if Florence had to put up with the vitriol that Hillary has had to endure. I certainly hope not. In those days, I imagine, everybody knew, but nobody talked about it.
In the election campaign, Donald Trump was able to make outrageous claims such as that Hillary was a criminal or that she enabled Bill’s affairs. Yet, she has never been found guilty of anything and in Trump’s eyes are we all enablers of our husband’s affairs? Are his various wives enablers of his affairs? In her own right, Hillary is a more capable, honest, intelligent, hard working person than her husband. She seems to have done an incredible job as the Secretary of State, So why such dislike?
I believe that people do not want couples in the public eye to reconcile after an affair is discovered. They want all the dirt to hit the front page of the newspaper to titillate them over the breakfast table. They want to see fights worthy of a Jerry Springer show. They want to see acrimonious bickering such as between Brad and Angela. They do not want to see a dignified woman say “I love and I respect him” or that years down the line that the bond between Bill and Hillary is still as strong as ever.
The public view seems to be that it is weak to stand by your man. Strong women kick him out as soon as they find out and definitely do not say they respect their husbands. How can you respect someone who had an affair? The reality is that until you live through an affair, you have no idea what it is like. You cannot see the inherent conflict of choosing to have an affair. Men choose an affair because of a conflict within themselves. They maybe want the sex on a platter, the excitement and whatever else they get from an affair, but the reason they choose an affair is that they still need and want their wives. Men tie themselves into knots to have an affair, lying to their wives, their mistresses, their children, their friends, their families and to themselves. They are ashamed of themselves, but they have a desperate need that they are unable to confess to their wives. Instead they turn to the other woman and use her to distract themselves from the great big hole within themselves.
It is my belief that if you asked married men a question just as the affair comes out into the open what their biggest fear would be, the answer would be if their wives kick them out. People generally do not know why people have affairs and do not want to know. They just want front page headlines of people being caught out with all the salacious details. They do not want to hear that the couple made up and it looks on the surface that the adulterer gets off scot free. In the Western world, we do not have capital punishment for infidelity, so instead we look for someone else to blame and that poor person is usually the wife. Just as we often blame the victim when it comes to rape, we blame the person that has been hurt the most. When it comes to rape, we say she was asking for it by walking down that street, wearing that skirt and so on. Wives ask for unfaithful husbands by not giving them enough sex, by not meeting his needs, by not being feminine enough, by being a Feminist, by letting themselves go, by concentrating too much on their children and home etc. We are even guilty of it ourselves. I feel I am not a good enough wife as my husband had an affair. Did Hillary feel the same? And if she is not a good enough wife to stop her husband straying, was she good enough and strong enough to lead America? More people said she was “good enough” than those that said she was not, but the older population who remember Bill’s contributions to their morning newspapers overwhelmingly voted to say she was not good enough. Donald’s revolving door habit of wives is perfectly fine. The next one is entering as the old one is leaving. He is also a demagogue as he latches on to voters’ prejudices, fear of the unknown and general ignorance. His arguments varied according to the audience and he attacked victims left, right and centre. His infidelities were never apologised for, but Hillary is guilty because her husband had affairs.
We will probably never know if Hillary would have been a better president than Donald Trump as I doubt she will try again. But maybe somewhere along the line, America will have a strong, intelligent, caring, female President and like most of the other female leaders around the world, she will make a wonderful leader.