By: Sarah Gayda
September 12 marked a day of big releases: Apple introduced its new iPhone X at close to C$1,300 a pop (for the base model), and Hillary Clinton's book appeared in bookstores at a comparably bargain price of $25. It was also my daughter's 16th birthday.
When H. was born in 2001, I would never have imagined that my cellular device would become my lifeline. Or, that my iPhone would become a necessary appendage and completely replace my More-Time-Moms calendar, ink-stained newspaper crossword puzzles, CD player, toaster-sized video camera and never-properly-folded road maps. My 2001 self would have had a hard time understanding that my iEverything could, incidentally, also be used as a phone if I got tired of texting.
I also could never have imagined that in 2017, the U.S. would be run by a narcissistic autocrat with little regard for science or truth; that extreme-right, once fringe opinions, would be prevalent in mainstream news and conversation; or that misogyny would appear exacerbated and more rampant than ever before.
The vitriolic reaction to the publication of Clinton's book has been astounding. How dare the first female presidential candidate in American history dare to tell her side of the story? How distasteful she should want to speak her mind! While Bernie Sanders also released a book recently, I have yet to hear anyone subject him to the type of slander that has been hurled at Clinton.
During her campaign, Clinton took heat for not speaking from the heart, for not being "real." Now that she has chosen to fully open up about one of the most significant elections in modern U.S. political history, she is accused of saying too much, of opening old wounds, of not moving on, and the list goes on. Double standard, much?
One of my favourite journalists, Sarah Kendzior, who consistently nails the current political climate and surreal goings-on with well-written prose, published another on-the-mark column yesterday: Get a grip, Democrats: Clinton’s book is not your biggest problem. It's well worth reading. So is the great Elizabeth Renzetti's, A broken America needs more Hillary Clinton, not less.
My daughter only knows a time when anyone can run for or be prime minister of Canada or president of the United States, regardless of colour, race or gender. For most of her life, Barack Obama was president and Hillary Clinton was one of the most powerful figures in Washington. Clinton may not have made it all the way to the Oval Office, in large part due to forces beyond her control, but she certainly paved a hard-fought path for the girls and women coming after her.
H. didn't get the new iPhone for her birthday yesterday. But you can bet I'll be buying her What Happened, the much more historically important issuance of September 12, 2017. Happy birthday.