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Jefferson: Let go of my collar, Hillary

After Bill Clinton's extramarital affairs were deemed not part of a right-wing conspiracy, his wife, Hillary, decided to stand by her man. I watched her interview on "60 Minutes" in 1992, when Hillary said she wasn't "sitting here like some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette," even though that's exactly what she was doing, with my jaw bouncing off the floor, wondering what could possibly cause this decision.

I had already kicked my piece of crap cheating "man" to the curb, raising my kids on my own, and Hillary was now condoning infidelity and abusive behavior. I grew up watching my mother belittled, browbeaten — and, yes, cheated on — on a regular basis; and I promised myself that I would never ever put up with that behavior and if anyone raised a hand to me, they'd pull back a bloody stump. (Better put ice on that.)

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Clinton didn't stand by her man because she had forgiven him or his nonexistent promise to stay true. It was a political decision — period. It was believed divorce would bode badly for the Democrat Party, and Republicans already occupied the moral high ground. So, Hillary was promised, when the time was right, she'd become president.

I'm one of those women who found her political decision repulsive and believe she set women back decades. Many women like my mother were finally garnering the courage to wash that man right out of their hair when they were told, by Hillary's action and media approval, to stand by a man who was cheating and teaching (by example) their sons to cheat and their daughters to accept that behavior. Lest we forget, oral sex was no longer considered sex.

Just as women were getting past being the token female hired, spending twice as much time proving we could do just about anything a man could do; just as we were gathering momentum and courage to stand on our own two feet, society grabbed us by the shirt collar and pulled us backward. Many were our mothers and grandmothers saying, "not so fast."

We had to start from square one, make up for lost time and once again, when we have solid footing as women, Hillary plays the woman card and trots out her antiquated ideas of what a woman should be. Hillary is a disgrace to the female race. Bill's latest would-be mistress was nicked "Energizer" by the Secret Service, according to Ronald Kessler's book, "The First Family Detail: Secret Service Agents Reveal the Hidden Lives of Presidents." It's no secret, yet Hillary stays. What a horrible message to any woman, young or old.

Hillary hasn't had a difficult day in her life. She's never had to lay awake at night worrying about how to pay the bills; never had to wait for the kids to finish eating because her dinner was whatever was left over; never had to stay up half the night cleaning the house, doing laundry and checking homework; and she's never, ever had to live under the same rules as you and I. Yet, her campaign signs say she's fighting for us.

No, Hillary is fighting for Hillary, and Hillary alone. And it really burns my biscuits she actually believes she's a role model for any female. She's done the exact opposite the feminist movement created, and I really don't want to go back to the days where women were barefoot and pregnant, beaten for speaking, not allowed to vote or have an opinion.

Yes, I and all women stand on our mother and grandmother's shoulders, but I refuse to hop off and subject myself to the abuse, humiliation and self-depravation they endured. Let go of my shirt collar, Hillary!

Michelle Jefferson writes from Westminster.

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