Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Cheap and Tawdry.....


I guess I have something to say after all.

For the past few days, there has been a glut of speculation, rumor and tawdry discussion about Bristol Palin, Sarah Palin, who is covering for the other, whether the baby is really Sarah's or is it Bristol's, her husband's former DUI and a whole assortment of totally inappropriate discussions about the private lives of these people.

Just so we're clear: I don't agree with their politics. Not at all. Not even a little bit.

And I never thought I'd be defending them. On the other hand, this kind of discussion about their personal lives and perhaps even (shock!) human flaws has turned a political election into an episode of "Dynasty" or "Dallas". Okay. I'm dating myself but I don't know the current prime time soap operas. "Desperate Housewives"?

Barack Obama was right. Families and kids should be off-limits. They didn't choose to run for any elected office and we shouldn't be gossiping about them. That's what it is ... gossip.

Anyone who's been around the Internet for a while has probably seen the phrase "ad hominem attacks". Attacking someone on a personal basis usually just shows that the attacker can't argue the issues. It's a playground tactic that has no place in an adult activity - such as electing a president.

'Nuff said.

~*

17 comments:

jen said...

I agree. Off limits.

But what is frustrating also is the spin that she is being attacked for being a woman. She (in my humble opinion) is being questioned about her lack of experience. And I wish they'd just acknowledge she really doesn't have that much.

Border Explorer said...

Agreed. I can't stomach right wing or left wing talk radio because of those sorts of attacks. I don't want to slide into that behavior myself. Hold me to this.

Defiantmuse said...

word.

the thing that's been pissing me off the most is when people say, "She has five children at home, and one is an infant!!". Um. How many people would be saying that about a MAN who had five children at home, one of whom was an infant. I dunno. I'm not a fan of hers or anything but that blatant sexism is obnoxious. As is tearing into a 17 year old girl who is probably terrified. So. I'm glad you said something.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Obama is already setting a new tone for the presidency and for this nation. Of course families should be off-limits.

I probably disagree with Sarah Palin on every conceivable (!) issue, but would never dispute her right to her beliefs. Spouses and children of any candidate should not be fair game for the gossip mills.

WendyB said...

Maybe these people should try keeping their family behind the scenes if they want to maintain their privacy. I have to say I find it extraordinary that relatives are constantly stumping for the politicians, and children are being flaunted on stage. Imagine if my husband came along on all my job interviews! It's a very strange thing that you wouldn't do in any other "business." You can't drag the whole family into your work and then expect them not to be the subject of national attention!

Brandi said...

couldn't agree more.

and more so-even though I have nothing in common with their politics even remotely-I don't think someone's kid getting pregnant affects their ability to hold public office.

MsLittlePea said...

Hmm. I'm probably not going to be liked anymore but I'll just say it all anyway. This is a hard one for me. To be objective that is. I definitely don't think anyone should be scrutinizing a 17 year old girl. However, when one is running for office, it's nothing new that the media is a pack of wolves. So as a woman with no children, would I put my hypothetical children in a position to be scrutinized by a pack of wolves? Um that would be a strong no....And at the same time they are crying "privacy, privacy!" they were posing for pictures today with the poor girl's 'fiance'. You can't have it both ways-I'm not saying that makes it ok, I'm just saying she majored in journalism, she knew this was going to happen. Did she stop to think what this kind of attention was going to do to her daughter?

I think the issue for me regarding this is hypocrisy, I feel like I don't want to hear about "family values" anymore from the GOP. I'd like to know if she still thinks abstinence only programs work. And I'm tired of hearing pundits cry "sexism" whenever they are asked a question about her they can't answer. This silly high school gossip does not necessarily mean we should vote one way or another but unfortunately that's what we're subjected to every four years. But the 24 hour news cycle needs something to keep everyone watching.

meno said...

Family should indeed be off limits. But the irony of her being a fan of "abstinence only" sex education is hard to shut up about.

But i will.

womaninawindow said...

It AMAZES me how politicians are weighed. I heard tonight while driving home, that depending on how Sarah Palin delivers her speach tonight, she might just be able to save the election for McCain. It should not just be one (carefully constructed) speech, one's family life, or where one lays one's hat that determines an election. It should be the history of that person's work that reflects what their future WORK might look like. People are nuts, man, and way too fickle. And let's not forget, it's McCain's WORK that we should be scrutinizing! (Thanks for the soapbox.)

wheelsonthebus said...

I am with WendyB and MsLittlePea. Palin has made politics about intruding into the family. Instead of pushing education, she has pushed her "family values" as policy. If she thinks she as a politician has a right to intrude on families, then she cannot expect to keep her family out of politics.

Olivia said...

I am with Barack Obama on this and his classy response. Let's focus on the issues.

I agree with you that it is silly gossip. And I agree with you that it does show that the attacker has nothing worthwhile to say about the issues.

Amen, O.

citizen of the world said...

I agree, and Bristol is just a kid. Or a town in Virginia with a Nascar track, take your pick. I think everyone should leave it alone. I don't care about Palin's beliefs either, but I have a serious issue with her and McCain's desire to impose those beliefs on the rest of us by vowing to overturn Roe v. Wade. We should be focusing on all the many reasons Plain and McCain are unfit to lead this country, not on what is going on in their families.

Molly said...

Well said Chani!

Gillian said...

They were bound to go digging up some dirt weren't they?
I am not impressed either. And nor do I like or agree with their politics (all of it, some of it yes.)
But you are right, kids, off limits please!!!
xo

yertle said...

I agree, given the types of attacks all of the candidates face about everything in their lives we are lucky to find anyone who is willing to run for president anymore. How do we get out of this craziness?

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

I agree kids should be off limits. Both by the media and by the candidates.

It would probably be better for her children if Palin didn't keep choosing to grandstand them over and over, but I also agree those children have a right to privacy.

And please, people, let's focus on the issues!

And yes, Chani, I'm just in agreement with you.

Carla said...

Agreed, grow up, discuss the issues and quit the attacks. What's really important is what these people will do if elected to office. That's what we should be focusing on.