The big news out of Sunday's September 11th Commemoration Ceremony in New York wasn't the touching tribute to the victims' families, but rather an incident caught on video that has conspiracy theorists renewing arguments about one of the presidential candidate's health. Hillary Clinton reportedly "overheated" in New York and left the memorial ceremony early, according to a statement released via campaign spokesman Nick Merrill. She then headed to her daughter's apartment and emerged just a few hours later, smiling and waving to crowds, but it wasn't enough to shake off the rampant speculation that followed the video's release. Update: On Sunday afternoon, Clinton's doctor released a statement announcing that she had diagnosed Clinton with pneumonia and that the overheating spell was due to dehydration.
Frankly, the video is concerning — it really does appear to show Clinton struggling and becoming unable to move independently, and there's legitimate reason to be concerned about that, since she's trying to become the president. However, the absolute wrong reaction to the video is that one that many people are having, which is to essentially say, "Told ya so." Thousands have jumped onto Twitter to say this is proof that their theories of some debilitating illness are actually accurate, even though this isolated incident, while troubling, does nothing to prove anyone's speculation true.
Not only is this response just highly insensitive, but it's also frequently embedded with misogyny, and it indicates that people don't actually care about whether Clinton is truly sick. Many are using this as an excuse to bash Clinton, and they are simply adding health worries to their list of grievances about her candidacy, rather than expressing sincere concern that a human being might be suffering from an illness.
It would be one thing if these theorists were respectfully articulating their fears about Clinton's health, but instead, most people are jumping to conclusions, managing to insult multiple demographics of people, and generally being rude about the situation. Scores of these online commenters have indicated little to no respect for her personhood, instead reducing Clinton to some soulless political enemy on whom it's acceptable to wish ill.
Whether it was part of some larger health issue or just a little too long spent in the late summer heat in a full black pantsuit, Clinton doesn't deserve the meanness in the wake of this incident. The compassionate response to her apparent overheating is to wish her a speedy recovery and good health, which many people neglected to do while they were busy gloating about supposedly being right.