Jill Stein Nails Her Feminist Case Against Hillary Clinton
Once again, the Green Party's Jill Stein has reminded American voters that Hillary Clinton is not the only woman running for president. In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Stein argued that the her party's platform is better for women than Clinton's — and she's not wrong. The Green Party requires 50 percent of its leadership positions to be held by women, and its platform has consistently supported provisions like equal pay and reproductive justice. But Stein's feminist case against Clinton serves as a reminder that these are not the only important feminist issues out there. Indeed, Stein pointed out the intersectional way in which different forms of injustice impact women:
When there's economic injustice, when there's racial injustice, when there's sexual violence, when there's health injustice, women are very vulnerable. We're vulnerable in part because we're busy taking care of young people, and we take care of our parents and our families and our communities. ... When there is injustice out there, it tends to flow in our direction.
This recognition that racial injustice and economic injustice are also feminist issues is vital. It is this recognition that allows Stein to fight for a living wage and accessible health care; she understands that these issues disproportionately impact women, especially women of color.
Now, Stein is attempting to render these tendencies visible in the political sphere. She has been increasingly critical of both Clinton and Trump, and has not held anything back in her criticisms of the Democratic Party. Said Stein:
We don't support bombing other people's kids, unlike the other woman in the race. The U.S. should not be in the business of buoying up oppressive dictators like Saudi Arabia that is sponsoring jihadi terrorism world-over, as Hillary Clinton herself said in a State Department memo put out by WikiLeaks.
Stein, like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, has passionately argued against the lesser-of-two-evils dynamic, insisting that the choice between two evils — in this case, Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump — is not an actual choice. "It's a fallacy that Hillary Clinton is the lesser evil here," she told Rolling Stone. "Another Clinton in the White House is just going to fan the flames of the right-wing revolt. The lesser evil simply guarantees that the greater evil will be elected in the next election."
This point cannot be overstated. Both Clinton and Trump have high unfavorable ratings, and while Trump has been more explicitly bigoted and extreme during his campaign, Clinton should not get a pass on her actions just because she isn't Trump.
Luckily for Stein, it looks like some of Sanders' more progressive base is turning toward the Green Party in case their preferred candidate doesn't receive the Democratic nomination — and I would argue rightly so, because Stein is mounting a direct challenge not only to Trump and Clinton, but also to the two-party status quo and to party establishments that have never served marginalized communities.