As Carrie Bradshaw once said, ‘The universe may not always play fair, but at least it’s got a hell of a sense of humour.’ On this week’s episode of ‘Keeping up with the Politicians’, Cynthia Nixon, known primarily for her role on ‘Sex and the City’ has announced that she is running for governor of New York. Her announcement was met, perhaps unsurprisingly, with the kind of instantaneous outrage that seems to be a recurring theme in the modern world. Apparently there is no nuance anymore, only aggression.
The controversy surrounding her bid centres around whether or not she is qualified to hold the position. Legally, she obviously is. After all we’re talking about a country where the only two real legal qualifications for the presidency are being over 35 and being born in America. Not a lot of small print going on here. Cynthia Nixon has a history of activism, which is a bonus, and is more than the actual president is bringing to the table. I’m pretty sure his main qualifications are being a man, being white and being rich – the ultimate triple threat.
Elections are like nominations for prom king and queen – the really nice, quiet kid doesn’t have a shot in hell.
Former New York City Council speaker Christine Quinn branded Cynthia Nixon an ‘unqualified lesbian’ neatly quantifying the outrage of the right in a handy, hard to forget slogan. If we disregard the homophobic nature of this for just a second, I think it’s worth thinking about who gets to decide if Cynthia Nixon is qualified or not.
The same Republicans that support Donald Trump cannot possibly claim that she is unqualified based on experience – I know that they will, but that argument is so ironic that it’s almost laughable. Whoever is writing the scripts in America right now is honestly killing it, who needs TV when life is a permanent black comedy?
Lots of people haven’t been ‘qualified’ for political roles in America. Arnold Schwarzenegger is my favourite example, but Donald Trump is still the most poignant. Ultimately, qualification in America seems to have been reduced to popularity in the most base sense. Elections are like nominations for prom king and queen – the really nice, quiet kid doesn’t have a shot in hell.
Fundamentally, I don’t personally think that Cynthia Nixon is an ideal candidate for the position but she is no less qualified that any other miscellaneous person. I don’t think Oprah would be qualified to be president and neither would Kanye (heartbreakingly). America’s political system is so broken that now, decency seems like a bonus. Half of me is pleased that a woman with liberal, socialist policies is running for governor of New York. The other half of me knows that when politics is reduced to a popularity contest, the public will never win.