The political dust of the last general election in the U.S has yet to settle. Like all “diligent” citizens of the world, the 2016 U.S General Election was a nail-biting time for me. Nigeria has its dose of trouble but Nigeria has always, and to grieve for Nigeria all the time was a stale and a perennial affair. I could really use some time in the sun, so off to America I wandered; the land of the free and the home of the brave. In the United States a Republican candidate for the leader of the free world was about to go into an election and he was shooting his mouth haphazardly like a broken faucet. That was a sight. It would have been laughable if it were just some comic actor in a sitcom ribbing us. This was a potential President of the United States! And as ludicrous as the whole affair was, I couldn’t help but notice a cloud gathering – one that had the stamping foot and the screaming voices of legions of Americans threatening to kick out the old order in a discontented cacophony, one that was gangly soaking up the drivel of the burly, testy man on the campaign podium. How such a racist, sexist pedagogue created a platform that would become a rallying point for many U.S citizens was very worrying to say the least
Let me step back and do a full disclosure. I am with Hillary Clinton. See, I can’t even bring myself to dip that declaration in past tense. That’s how badly hurt I am by America. This pain hurts, I tell you. Abi no be America again.
So while I was admiring Clinton and staying with her, seething at Trump and smhing for him, I decided for balance to find dirt on my heroine, Hilary Clinton in the name of full disclosure. So from a list of anti-Hillary books that had suddenly find their way to the top of the bestseller’s list, I decided to go for the most venomous according to polls. I picked Gary J Brynes Crisis of Character. Bryne was a White House Secret Service Agent during the Bush administration and the better part of Bill Clinton’s. He was a close observer of the operations of the White House in the early nineties. In his tell-it-all account, Brynes spared no details in tearing into the Clintons. He wrote of the sinister machinations, the sleaze, and the financial impropriety of the first family. He seized on Bill’s widely publicized romance with Lewinsky, Hilary’s less known temper tantrums and manipulative style; just about any of the Clinton’s linen was starkly brought out for literary airing, and all in time before a historical election in the history of the United States, featuring its first female candidate in a major political party.
So with a Crisis of Character, I sought the truth from where it was likely to hurt the most to prepare my heart for any eventuality. Hilary isn’t Miss Too Goody Shoe and now I know it like I have always suspected, but against a Trump, I would still had stood for her. My choice here was not a difficult one. I would take her over an undisciplined, unhinged racist, a bigot and an unruly character without discipline or any measure of Presidential decorum to say the least.
The book Crisis of Character is no way near the awesomeness of the dozens of books I have read this year. Placing it on this list is the gravest disservice I could have done to the multitude of titles here, and the others that didn’t make my top 12. But I also know that the things that make us grow and learn aren’t necessarily the things that appease our sensibilities .They are sometimes like the irascible elves that hold up their hands like a witness and share their discomfiting truth, with glee or with remorse.
I don’t know how much this books and others of the ilk helped in ensuring that Hilary Clinton does not become the first female president of the United States (and I don’t think it did much) but I ensured that if I had hitherto had any iota of blind worship for Hilary Clinton, this book disabused me of it, and created for me a level playing field from which to assess the two candidates.
So thank you Gary J. Bryne but there are no quotes from you. Nonsense !