Aug 302008

Sorry, swore I wouldn’t join in the media Palin-drone, but just had to write that headline.

Figuring that it would take the media maybe 5 seconds to start slobbering about how McCain’s Veep pick would be very appealing to women who were disappointed that Clinton had not gotten the Democratic nomination, my first inclination after Sarah Palin’s nomination was to unplug the television. That they seriously think that there are a significant number of women who are so pissed off that they would jump ship from a strongly pro-choice, pro-woman ticket and vote for a ticket that is strongly against women’s human rights is both shallow, misogynist and racist.

Undoubtedly there are some Clinton fans whose support was based on their inner sexist being less powerful than their inner racist, but I’m guessing those folks are more likely to be part of the white male democratic demographic than to be women. Kim Gandy, President of NOW put it succinctly in a statement issued shortly after the nomination,

“The fact that Palin is a mother of five who has a 4-month-old baby, a woman who is juggling work and family responsibilities, will speak to many women. But will Palin speak FOR women? Based on her record and her stated positions, the answer is clearly No.”

In other words, as Hillary Clinton made clear the other night, “No way, No how, NO McCAIN!” Over at American Prospect, Ann Friedman points out that,

“It plays to the assumption that disaffected Hillary Clinton supporters did not care about her politics — only her gender. In picking Palin, Republicans are lending credence to the sexist assumption that women voters are too stupid to investigate or care about the issues, and merely want to vote for someone who looks like them. As Serwer noted, it’s akin to choosing Alan Keyes in an attempt to compete with Obama for votes from black Americans.”

And then there is this fine missive from Richard Power on his Words of Power blog,

“Life is all about the choices we make.Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) has the freedom to come and go, to speak and choose.

What has Palin done with that freedom?

Palin, like about 60 percent of Alaska voters, favors drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Her environmental credentials are, at best, mixed. She favors what we in Alaska call “predator control,” including, if necessary, the hunting of wolves from the air. Just recently her Dept. of Fish and Game pulled some wolf cubs from their den and shot them as part of a program to improve moose survival. Washington Post, 8-29-08

Sarah Palin wants to let the polar bears die, too. On global warming, she’s aligned with” most discredited, fringe, extreme viewpoints” America Blog, 8-29-08

Aung San Suu Kyi’s freedom is very different. It is the inner freedom of an imprisoned dissident; it is a mute freedom of heart, mind and spirit.

What has Aung San done with her freedom?

She has gone on a hunger strike. (Note—see the Feminist Peace Network’s recent coverage of this story)

Weigh the US mainstream news media coverage of Sarah Palin’s political ascension against its coverage of Aung San Suu Kyi’s hunger strike; then ask yourself, “What has happened to this culture?””

But perhaps the best quote I’ve seen about Palin, was this gem from the Associated Press,

“She has more experience catching fish than dealing with foreign policy or national affairs.”

That about sums it up. Better stock up on the popcorn, the Vice Presidential debate is going to be a hoot.

 August 30, 2008  Posted by on August 30, 2008

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