I had said I would write a post because the comments to my last post were more than I could answer in a comment so here goes. :)
On the experience question:
Moti of Jewish Simplicity doesn't believe Sarah Palin is experienced enough or ready to be president, when I asked how he felt Obama would be more ready he mentioned that Obama had been running for office longer, he's been in this campaign longer and has well thought out positions etc.. I guess my response there is-- being in a campaign longer to me is a pretty thin addition to a man's resume when it comes to running for President. Besides that-- he is running for President afterall. McCain is running against Obama and as his running mate Palin will adopt McCain's positions for the campaign. Obama is not going to make a better president because he's been in a campaign! There's also no further learning curve here for Obama, he's at the top of the ticket. I also think its wrong to discount a person for being a mayor or governor of a smaller population state. Being a governor is executive experience and all governors deal with complicated issues, partisan problems, big budgets etc. She is extremely popular in her state which tells me someone thinks she has a handle on it and is doing well. We ought to give her a chance to show us her experience and not just disreguard it. Obama hasn't shown much at all in all this time, is more coming from him now?
Jennifer brought up the idea that while Palin may be a great woman, her inexperience doesn't make her the right woman. Both Moti and Jennifer think that a different woman would have been a better choice to bring Hillary supporters to McCain's side.
On that I'm thinking there are a couple reasons I like Palin--first I am a conservative. I was so 'not excited' about McCain a couple weeks ago I was considering not voting at all the for the first time in my adult life. McCain had a problem becuase he has been so willing to work across the aisles over the years that he has alienated his own base. Now-- you can't say that about Obama, but still he says he is the 'change' candidate.
In any case, a candidate can't win an election without the support of his own party. McCain needed someone to shake things up and to get his own party on his side more than he needed Hillary voters. I don't know if he'll end up with Hillary votes or not--but I think he's got a fair shot here with Palin. I think it could go either way.
Women who voted for Hillary are for the most part going to vote for Obama--because of the issues. Those who are not so tied to the issues but just want a woman--well--perhaps they will like Palin, perhaps they won't. Time will tell. Hutchinson (sp?) is brought up alot by folks, well-- McCain and she have some fundamental differences and I don't think they'd work well together. I don't think she'd have brought much of a spark either and when you are running against someone who makes Oprah weep til her eyelashes fall off and can fill a stadium with adoring fans you need some spark.
McCain is long on character and proven experience and really is a maverick-not that I'd agree with him much in many of the things he's done--but one thing McCain at his age definitely doesn't have is any kind of rock star appeal. He is one boring looking dude--period. Not good in the media age. Palin brings that and he needed it.
Palin and McCain have differences but where Palin is able to get on board with McCain is in a few things that I've noticed--one is running on being a reformer and the 2nd is about the sort of 'old fashioned' character/values that you get with a woman who is strong in 'family values' as they call them and a man who has been a war hero and a maverick. They have a unique combination that shows them to be 'different leaders' that could potentially really bring 'change' as everyone seems to want. A third thing is being problem solvers with the ability to work with the opposition and to press through and get things done.
Another thought about Hutcheson--What 'change' is there if you pick a woman who is another Washington insider? I've heard Hutcheson (sp?) defend earmarks as simply the way business is done. That would never work with McCain's message. I think its also a fallacy that liberal women would have voted for her any more than they would for Palin. Now Palin has taken some earmarks I think, possibly lobbied for them-- that's legal. I doubt she's been as involved with them as Hutcheson. McCain has his own ideas about campaign finance etc.. which most conservatives disagree with becuase they think he has given the advantage to the liberals when he co-sponsored McCain/Fiengold. Conservatives aren't all revved up to deal with sperical interests and such like--McCain has appeal to liberals when he talks about that sort of thing not conservatives. A McCain/Hutcheson ticket would have been a divided house from day one -not possible.
Still--I will say I think Moti & Jennifer's points are reasonable fair ground to bring up in the campaign. Folks should look at experience. They should also compare it to Obama and Biden and make up their own minds.
When I posted my original post it had nothing to do with experience I was angry at the 'concerned' questions being asked about Palin's children. I knew they were phoney and meant to undermine her. I also thought it was very ironic to have liberals arguing against a woman with a full plate in a sexist way. She is what the feminists have always claimed a woman could be. Here comes one along and they question her right and ability to be a mother and a candidate. I found it just really insulting and underhanded and I think alot of folks have the same opinion. It was the first time I've ever felt like getting myself a bumper sticker and lawn sign--that's how angry it made me to hear such hypocrisy. Obviously she CAN handle both--she's doing it.
Now Julie brought up another point-- in particular it was Palin's teen daughter. I want to say when she was brought up and made the center of media attention it made me angry too. I think though--you have to be angry at the ones who are doing something wrong NOT at the person who isn't. The media I thought was wrong, not Sarah Palin. I was furious with the media because I think they forget famous folks are human too. I think that damage is done now but they are the guilty ones not Palin.
Palin is coping with a situation her child brought on herself. That's the first thing I think needs to be looked and put in perspective. The daughter is pregnant. Ok--so who doesn't know a pregnant teen? Who hasn't got one in their own family someplace or been maybe even been one?
The fact that Palin has conservative family values doesn't make her family immune to problems it just means they handle those problems according to the values they believe in- just like everyone else. Really the thing we need to decide is are these reasonable good values?
I have a dear friend who is an extremely capable woman and has raised 7 children to adulthood. Five of her children are married now,one has moved to Alaska and enjoys her independence and another one out of all 7 got pregnant outside of marriage and is a single mom of 21. With her family's support she works and has saved up and purchased a home of her own for herself and her child. She is 21 now. They are conservative and go to the same sort of church as Palin but are very 'normal' people, pay their bills, are involved in the church and community and are just wonderful folks. The dad once ran for mayor in my hometown and was a county supervisor for years. They didn't hide their daughter's situation. They simply kept on loving her as they always did. Its been good for the young lady to buck up and face things as they are for her and deal with it. She's handling it fine.
I have a neice who became pregnant at 17, she too kept her baby and has now made it through nursing school and is going to be marrying next year. Her daughter is 5 now and has been accepted as part of the family without any problems.
My son recently married because a baby is on the way. Now-- they are a little older--but they have a major difference as they have significantly different religious beliefs. That will be something they will have to figure out between them. They have a challenge there, they don't have much money either, another challenge, and they live on the other side of the country--a third big challenge. They are handling this according the values they believe in and doing what they believe is right. I'm all for it, but I know it isn't going to be easy.
My own life wasn't easy either. My hubby was 18 when we married. I know some of the challenges personally. I will say though-- It was MY idea to get married. Nobody forced me and I have yet to meet a young person who would be very easy to force into that sort of decision. I'm betting this is not a marriage by force in the Palin family either.
To marry or not, that decision is their business not mine. Palin's daughter has been with this young man apparently a long time and may well have planned to marry him anyhow. They haven't married yet--and they are young--so I wouldn't hold them to that--perhaps they won't. Who knows?
Sarah Palin made one short statement and I think it was meant to say--yes, she's pregnant, we love her, she plans to marry the father and has our full support and will have to grow up fast. Its our business, we'll handle it. Enough said.
That's the gist of what she said--not an exact quote.
Anyhow what I took from that is that this is nobody's business but the Palin's.
I don't think we can assume that this girl is being forced to marry or marrying to run away from a bad family situation or that Palin is running for president to shirk her family and get money. I'm thinking, those aren't things that can be assumed or should be. They're all a sort of piling of negatives onto someone who didn't do anything wrong here.
If the young couple do marry --we should not assume that is a tragedy. Gosh, my mom was 18 when she married, so was my husband. I have been married 27 years so far. My parents were still married 36 years after their young marriage when my dad passed away. An 18 year old gal can make that decision and not ruin her life.
Its too bad that the Palin's have to endure this media nonsense. If Sarah Palin caved to it however I would not think more highly of her. She's proving her metal and her daughter will only be steeled by this experience.
I've known many women who can handle a career and a family problem. My cousin has a pretty big career and she handled it fine while dealing with the fact that her son was killed by a train. It was a horrible tragedy and she had an inner steel and grace that was amazing to behold. While she suffered she continued her work professionally and she then becamse a spokesperson for organ donation as an outlet for her grief to turn a bad situation a little bit positive. Quite a few folks benefitted from her son's deat at 19, she grieved but never missed a beat in life.
I don't think I'm made of that kind of metal. But I can sure recognize and admire it when I see it. I think I can see that in Palin--so far.
When I look at the Palins I see a very good loving family. I saw the baby passed from one to other during the speeches at the RNC and I thought-now that is just a family. They are showing us what a family is.
I think its great to see a family like that showing the love and acceptance that a real family has for each other. Accepting and loving a special needs child, and a pregnant teen.
Now I realize this is a conservative family not a liberal family. I can understand liberals want to vote for liberals - that makes sense. But to not vote for a candidate because you question if she can take care of her family or because her daughter is pregnant to me is wrong.
Seeing this family you can see they are well cared for and caring well for each other too.
Palin by the way is not the only VP candidate here who has been in a high profile government position while dealing with family problems. Joe Biden was sworn into office in the hospital where his two injured sons lie after the car accident that killed his wife and daughter. Should he have resigned? Were his kids ruined by this? I believe they are both grown and have good careers now. Apparently he has done, as a single dad, what we think Palin can't do--dealt with a big job and a family.
I think we need to realize there are 'special folks' among us. I'm saying that because I personally couldn't do it. I could't be vice president if I didn't have kids. I don't have those qualities that these folks have. However they do and they ought to be appreciated by the rest of us for what they are able to give us.
I think its fine to question experience and if Sarah Palin can't convince you that her experience is legitimate and that she's tough enough or understands your issues enough--don't vote for her. That's fine.
I hope though that she won't be disqualified because of her family--which seems to be a normal beautiful family. That is wrong and not fair and especially when it is brought up by liberals and feminists who really mean 'she's not my flavor of woman'.
I'm writing this in a bit of haste--I need to get to work. Just continuing the conversation and hope you all appreciate that I am afterall a conservative so we do likely see some things differently. :) Maybe we'll come to understand each other if not necesarily agree--that's something eh?
Saturday, September 6, 2008
I had said I would write a post because the comments to my last post were more than I could answer in a comment so here goes. :)