Why You Should Care About...Media Treatment of Hillary Clinton's Health

She's definitely not everyone’s favourite candidate. For some, she’s a nightmare personified. However, one undeniable fact remains: Hillary Clinton is a woman.

It may seem obvious, but Clinton’s womanhood is precisely her blessing and her curse--especially when it comes to the way the media has, and continues, to treat her.

This past week, Clinton has been the subject of scrutiny  when it was revealed she had to take three days off due to pneumonia. On September 11, she left the 9/11 memorial site early, and can be seen visibly struggling to walk to her car while her team helped her.

Media pressure has prompted her campaign to release what type of medication she is taking, including: the type of antihistamine, her triglyceride count, her cholesterol, the type of antibiotic, , and for how long. CNN had an extensive segment where they analyzed her medical reports.

"I wouldn’t say there’s anything abnormal in here,” said CNN in-house doctor, Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

"If she were to faint again,” remarked a Fox News anchor, “that would pretty much be it.”


Tonight, Clinton is back on the campaign trail in Greenville since recovering from her bout of pneumonia. But the question still lingers: why was all of this necessary? If anything, it seemed to add fuel to Republican rival Donald Trump’s ever-famous campaign speeches, with Trump asking, “you think Hillary would be able to stand up here for and do this? I don’t know. I don’t think so,” to the predictable onslaught of boos at the mention of Clinton’s name.

Never mind the brutality of the campaign trail. Never mind that Donald Trump is not in great health himself–with his weight being almost obese–and never mind that Hillary’s doctor said the pneumonia is a mild infection. No--a couple of coughs and Clinton’s about to die.

We have to ask: would a man be scrutinized this badly?

The fact that Clinton is a woman means she has to be double as tough and double as strong; she has to emit an image that is unemotional and charismatic--the defining characteristics of male politicians. Moreover, Clinton can’t appear frail, or weak, because women who are frail and weak are “not fit to be president.”

"Imagine a world where you can’t slow down, can’t rest, and absolutely can’t get sick,” said CNN commentator Christiane Amanpour. “When it comes to overqualified women having to try 100 times harder than underqualified men to get a break, or even a level playing field, well, we know that story.”

The media’s hyperbolic response to what really amounts to a couple of sick days is typical of Clinton’s coverage. Everything is a scandal, a lie, or a conspiracy. And we’re sick of it.