I'm obviously not black, but part of the pleasure I got in voting for Barack Obama is that I believed I was voting for the first black president. And when I vote for Hillary Clinton, as I expect to, in the fall, I will vote for her because she's the right choice for me, but I will get extra pleasure knowing that I'm helping my country overcome another barrier to full acceptance for everyone.
I've watched this campaign with new eyes, and I totally see how much harsh judgement there is for her, and how we have to accept that people don't respect her as much as they do the men she's running against. I find that very very offensive. Not just on her behalf but on behalf of our country, half of which are women, and none of which have ever been President. Think about that for a minute. Maybe the difference in respect has something to do with that.
She is a serious candidate, no matter what you think of her politics. She deserves not just equal consideration, but a little extra to compensate, because it's clear not everyone is on board with the idea that we can have a woman as leader.
I also think we can forgive Gloria Steinem and Madeline Albright, two pioneers in this cause, for making the case awkwardly. What they were trying to say, imho is that one of the reasons to vote for HRC is that she is a woman and the other candidates are not. This is an extra value available to our country. We should grab it because the opportunity might not come up again any time soon. Maybe what's offensive about the idea is that Albright said women should vote for HRC because she's a woman and a better idea is that we all should vote for a woman because it would be good for us.
Not only can we have a competent leader, but we can also break another barrier. It's a hard point to make, we don't have vocabulary for this, but we need to have a way to say it anyway.
I think evaluation of a candidate should be solely on the character and competence of the candidate. Obama being black didn't make him a better president, and Clinton being a woman won't make her better.