By highlighting Hillary Clinton’s experience and capabilities, The Bee’s endorsement presented a rational argument to support the assertion that “she is a hardworking, smart politician.” The endorsement overlooked the reality that many of her supporters find her to be inspirational, based on her impressive, factually oriented resume (“The many reasons to support Clinton, not just stop Trump”; Oct. 2).
In the Sept. 28 article, “Democrat relies on ‘a drink,’ camaraderie to get through debate,” a viewer of the debate captured the appeal of Donald Trump’s temperament. He said, “I think objectively that Clinton did very, very well, but I think on an emotional level, for people who … are suspicious of intellectuals, that Trump probably carried the day.”
By definition, intellect is the “ability to learn and reason; the capacity for knowledge and understanding; the ability to think profoundly.” An intellectual is “marked by the creative use of intellect; is rational rather than emotional.”
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One definition of temperament is “a tendency to become irritable or be too sensitive.” Historically, this definition has been used to prevent women from getting promoted to leadership positions. The power brokers – men, for the most part – have argued that women aren’t management material because they are too emotional. Instead of reasoning based on facts and figures, they succumb to their feelings.
It’s ironic that Trump is regarded as having the right temperament to be president as he continually exhibits behavior that is emotional rather than rational. He is, by definition, temperamental in that he “tends to behave in an erratic or unpredictable manner (moody) and is easily excited or angry.”
Meanwhile, Clinton is said by her detractors to lack the appropriate temperament even though she is demonstrating how she fully meets the requirements for top-level leadership, i.e., superior intellect and suppression of the public expression of one’s emotions.
There’s widespread agreement that the bar is set higher for Clinton than for Trump. He scores points simply by not walking toward her during a debate. Of deeper concern is the insidious reversal of an old bar regarding leadership ability (high thinking; low feeling) that’s being applied to bar Clinton from being elected. The new bar (high feeling; low thinking) favors Trump by rewarding him for emotional outbursts and for denying the importance of profound thinking.
Susan M. Osborn of Citrus Heights is a freelance writer and author of “Awful Bosses Coloring Book” and “The System Made Me Do It! A Life-Changing Approach to Office Politics.” Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.