An Apology to Hillary Clinton
Ladies, we owe Hillary Clinton an apology.
I’ll spare you all the details of how I found myself there, but last Friday night I was in attendance for Charlotte’s annual Debutante ball and I got a glimpse into our future and frankly speaking, it scared the bejeezus out of me. And in a rare moment of clarity (for me), I knew with unquestionable certainty why Hillary Clinton lost the election.
I’ll be honest and admit to not knowing much about the Debutante culture before last Friday night. To me, Debutantes were more myth than anything. A fairytale spun from the Victorian era and Hollywood but never real; never an actual tradition that young women of today were subjected to….in real life. So when I realized where I was and what was happening, I had questions. Lots and lots of questions. And no one, (including Google) could tell me, why? Why do we do this? I understand and acknowledge the reason for it back in the day when women had no rights and marrying well was their only aspiration, but why, in this day and age, do we still do this?
Surely, young women of the 21st Century do not need their parents to parade them across a stage like livestock in a cattle auction as a prerequisite for leaving the nest. And more importantly, how exactly does this practice benefit our society?
Again, because my knowledge of this subculture was so limited, I found myself spending most of the night with my jaw on the floor as my perception of what debutantes should be:
butted heads with the reality of what they are:
I should also make the disclaimer that I am not a parent and can’t effectively speak to the difficulty of raising kids today but my jaw was still on the floor most of the night because of behavior I thought would be deemed inappropriate for high society.
The evening was simple in it’s design; 310 young people, between the ages of 19 and 22 were going to have a celebratory dinner starting at 7:30pm and after dinner, a band would play until 11:30pm. Dessert was a buffet in a separate room; as was dinner for the parents of the 19 Debs in attendance. What surprised me was the open bar set up in the room for the kids’ dinner. No wine service was offered to them during the meal, but the bar remained opened to them during the entire function. More on this later….
My first shock came when the Debutantes and their friends and boyfriends arrived for the party. I thought I knew what “Cocktail Attire” meant but apparently, I was wrong. Those of you who know me know I blame a lot of America’s failings and low morality on the Kardashian influence and sadly, this event would prove to be no different. I saw powder blue slip dresses that were way too short, being worn with no stockings and black, suede ankle boots. I’m no fashionista, but I feel sure that combination never appeared on a Red Carpet. And that was the least offensive outfit of the night. Butt cheeks hung below too short hemlines, sleeveless dresses with armholes large enough to fit my head through revealed not just side boob, but full on boobage with no bra to be found. Trust me, some of them really needed the support. I’m not even going to discuss the necklines of most of the dresses. They carried no purses that I saw but, each one had a smart phone glued to one hand. Honestly, I was truly perplexed. Poor fashion is forgivable, but a lack of class in so many is shameful. These were the best young women our society had to offer? According to whom?
Dinner was uneventful, although it took almost twenty minutes for the minister to get the room’s attention of the blessing to be said at the top of the meal. Once dinner was finished, the night really became fascinating. Remember the open bar I mentioned earlier? It got pounded from the moment it opened until the party ended. And by pounded, I mean physically pounded. They drank so much the bar had to be restocked twice before dinner was over and by 9:30pm (2 hours into the party) the bar had to close momentarily so all the glass ware could be removed and replaced by plastic cups. They had broken so many glasses, the country club hosting the event was afraid of one of the drunken debs stepping on glass with her bare feet because none of the girls werewearing shoes anymore. I witnessed several stumbles into furniture, 3 girls passed out on 2 or more banquet chairs and one boy so drunk security had to carry him out to a car. The most surreal aspect of all of this? The parents passively watching this unfold from just outside the ballroom while calmly sipping their martinis and Chivas like it was just another Friday night. (To be fair, almost all of the kids were of age, supposedly.)
I left to go home that night completely flabbergasted. Maybe, I’m over reacting. Maybe my age is aiding my disbelief, but one thing hit home for me. These young women are the reason Hillary Clinton lost the election. They haven’t been taught to think for themselves, to stand on their own. Their lives revolve around “Likes” and “Trends” and “Followers” not causes, social justice or self respect. We assumed the future generations of females understood what “Wage Gap” and “Glass Ceilings” really meant. Trust me, they don’t. They have no idea. And why would they? They’ve never had to fight for anything, or anyone in their short, sheltered lives. So they voted for the guy with his own reality TV show just like Kim Kardashian.
I blame myself for not paying attention.
I did this.
Correction; we did this. We, the women of this country, have become complacent with being second class citizens and have lost our passion and our voice for equal treatment and fair pay.
And we allowed our youth to mistake our contentment for satisfaction.
So, on be half of my fellow American women in their 40’s who had the wind knocked out of them by this election, let me say directly to Hillary Clinton:
Madam Secretary, Please forgive us. We weren’t paying attention.
Nevertheless, we are now. And we will never give up.