Friday, September 5, 2008

WOULD YOU WANT THIS WOMAN TO BE YOUR VICE-PRESIDENT?

I'm not particularly political, and God knows I'm a little out of touch at the moment when it comes to U.S. politics. But I've got to put the question out there: What was John McCain thinking? Considering his advanced age and the argument against putting an old man with a history of medical woes into the White House, you'd think he would have searched far and wide for the most formidable vice-presidential candidate he could find.

So why'd he settle on Alaska Governor Sarah Palin? 

I don't understand why so much hoopla is being made over Palin's unmarried and knocked-up 17-year-old daughter, Bristol. The Democratic Party, of which I am a proud member, is supposed to be above all that. So Republicans can be spectacularly hypocritical? No news flash there. They promote anti-abortionism with "sanctity of life" sloganeering while flaunting the sanctity of the Bible and its "turn the other cheek" aphorisms, yet they support the death penalty. What's wrong with this picture?

Let's leave the teenager out of this. I'm not a parent, but I've been around long enough to know that there is a certain point when all this family values BS is just that: BS. Once children begin school, parents can no longer monitor them 24/7, and other influences take over. Sometimes the best parents produce problem children--or rather, children with problems, since there is no evidence that Bristol is a so-called "problem child." There is nothing illegal or immoral about being unmarried, teenage and pregnant. It's just the result of bad choices. We all make those from time to time--though, granted, they aren't always as permanently life-altering.

So let's not pick on Bristol. There's so much actual ammunition to use against Palin anyway: supporting the secession of Alaska (I honestly never knew this had ever been an issue until a few days ago), supporting abstinence-only education (as if that would have helped Bristol) and teaching creationism in schools, etc., etc., etc. What was McCain thinking? Is he trying to attract female Democrats who feel left out in the cold by a Hillary-less ticket? Is he trying to attract ultra-conservatives who accuse (not criticize, accuse, as if it's a crime) him of being too liberal? And if he insists that Barack Obama is underqualified for the job of president, what does that make Palin? Is he simply handing Obama the election on a silver platter.

My verdict: All of the above. If Team Obama screws this up, there's no hope for the Democratic Party.
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