There are only two men in the 2016 presidential race: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.
Like or dislike her, there's no questioning Hillary's manly bona fides
. Mrs. Clinton is as tough as she's philosophically misguided.
At the first Democratic debate, on October 14, 2015, Bernie Sanders, Martin O'Malley and Lincoln Chafee shuffled meekly to their respective podiums.
Only Jim Webb and Mrs. Clinton strode onto that stage like soldiers.
Unless her handlers coach her on acting femininely, you'll never catch Hillary blubbering about Bill and Chelsea coming first in her life.
They don't (come first)!
No, siree. For Hillary, it's ambition before family.
Still, when Hillary expects it to pay political dividends, she fights like a girl, claws drawn.
Her April 19 victory in the New York primary could hardly be bettered. But it's unlikely to soften Mrs. Clinton's sharpshooting. She and rival Bernie Sanders have been locked in a cycle of sorts, where Sanders will try mightily to stand up to Hillary, and she'll swat him down like a fly.
Incredibly, Sanders is too petrified to lay the ruination of Libya at Hillary's sturdy feet. And he has only to recount the ambient horrors of Hillary's foreign policy—the vote for "the disastrous war in Iraq," for one—and Mrs. Clinton's Amazon Warriors at CNN and elsewhere crow, "Is Bernie Sanders taking the low road?"
It's a little late in the game, but April saw Bernie try his utmost to expose Mrs. Clinton's record for all to see. His thundering, "Hillary Clinton isn't qualified to be president," however, soon gave way to a whimper, a squeak, a "she started it"; "I would have preferred an issue-oriented campaign." Mumble-mumble. "Where's my mommy?"
Sanders finally settled on, "I question her judgment, not experience." The senator was soon bowing-and-scraping again because a surrogate attached the words "corporate Democratic whores" to Hillary's incremental approach to socializing the medical means of production. (Yes, Sanders' Fabian fondness for the state, economic planning and centralization exceeds Hillary's.)
Sanders' resistance in the face of ruthless machine politics mounted on behalf of Clinton by Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz has been flaccid. At the same time, the senator has been fierce in his defense of Hillary's email security breaches as secretary of state. He famously fought off Hillary's critics, neutering himself with this zinger:
"The American people are sick and tired [of] hearing about your damn emails."
Compared to battle-axe Clinton, Sanders is a mouse, not a man.
Early in March, The Mouse scolded The Man for interrupting him. Said the timid Sanders, "Excuse me, I'm talking." Right away, the gynocentric national media erupted in a "debate" that revolved around a preposterous proposition:
Was poor Bernie sexist?
Of course, Methuselah jumps to attention whenever Hillary reprimands him for his failure to stand by President Barack Obama on gun control.
And who can forget when, in August of 2015, socialist-in-Seattle Sanders skedaddled as a couple of girl protesters got in his face and grabbed his mic?
Don't let Hillary's "wife, mom, grandma" routine fool you. That's her Twitter handle; that's not her.
You sense that if she had her way, Hillary would ditch the familial shtick. But Hill's a smart cookie; she goes through the "wife, mom, grandma" motions because she must.
Unlike the mucho Hillary, some other "men" racing for the White House have successfully "transitioned," as Caitlyn Jenner
Guess who caught hell for sending out a girly, sanctimonious, pity-me fundraising email
about the personal sacrifices made by a presidential candidate? Hillary? Donald? Not on your life. Both thrive on the grueling schedule.
The "man" griping about a lack of work-life balance was Ted Cruz.
There's a lot that's phony about Cruz, but it's not his Twitter handle. It identifies him correctly, first, as the "father of two" and "Heidi's husband."
Likewise, on Twitter, the real John Kasich is "husband and dad" before he's "governor of Ohio."
Obama is one of the girls, too. On Twitter, the most powerful man in the world, the POTUS, dutifully defers to FLOTUS and family first.
Manifestly ambitious men in their element never used to pretend their ambition didn't inform who they were and what they did. Those are the ways of men molded in the image of woman.
Certainly Donald Trump has never described himself as "husband to Melania, father to Ivanka, grandad to ... ."
"President of the greatest country on earth. Bite me," is how a Trump in the White House would likely announce himself on social media.
Other than Gov. Chris Christie, who's been eliminated from the running, Mr. Trump is the only Alpha Male among his Republican rivals.
Who endorses Trump? Mucho men do: The Border Patrol Union, Sherriff Joe Arpaio, the race-car drivers' association (NASCAR), the New York Veteran Police Association, actors Jon Voight and Scott Baio, boxer Mike Tyson, rockers Kid Rock and Ted Nugent, kickass Kirstie Alley.
"Bad" words: That's another thing men who've successfully transitioned to the world of women dislike.
"I don't like that word," quivered Kasich, when his Super PAC called Mr. Cruz a liar. "It might damage his brand," fretted his groupies in mainstream media. "For the sake of the kids," the governor once pleaded, "please watch the tone; stop the shouting."
Like the women folk who give them their marching orders, Kasich-country hates honest language.
Another trend in America's hopelessly feminized discourse is anger-shaming. This particular female ploy is used (against manly minds) to negate righteous indignation.
After all, forceful speech could very well signal a resolve to pursue unwavering positions. We can't have that! To the women folk—and their house-broken males—strong language indicates it's time to restore calm and equilibrium. Anger is bad, they'll intone, while insisting unambiguous words be replaced with words signifying sameness and stasis—tolerance, consensus, unity, openness, inclusiveness.
Tellingly, only Trump has owned his anger. Only Trump has refused to be henpecked. "I am very angry because our country is being run horribly and I gladly accept the mantle of anger," he roared.
"He's playing the politics of anger to get a rise out of a crowd" was the consensus on "Anderson Cooper 360°," the eponymous show of CNN's Alpha female.
"Donald Trump has brought the party down to a new low. He's feeding off of people's anger about this country on both parties," contorted bloodless Republican Erick Erickson, of Red State fame.
Moaned a "Politico" writer to MSNB's Kate Snow: "His brand is macho. He bullies. He wields power. He plays to win." OMG! And what next?!
As to, "Act like a grownup", "Be the adult in the room": Who other than a mother reprimanding a child or henpecking a husband (or Republican strategist Ana Navarro
) would use such anemic, prissy clichés?
Hillary would— but only
to control the men.
One thing seems certain: If nature is allowed to take its course; the showdown on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2016 will likely be between the two men in the race:
The Hildebeest and The Donald.