Friday, September 05, 2008


I know we're supposed to leave the children alone, but...

... this kid was dying a thousand deaths up there

A kid? Well, actually, Bristol Palin's boyfriend Levi Johnston is 18. Plenty of 18-year olds are fighting in Iraq. His brother-in-law to be is 19, and he'll be going. As for going, I suspect it went something like this:

"Oh, you're going to the convention in St. Paul, Levi... You're GOING."

In her supposedly maverick Washington-outsider speech, written by a Washington-insider, Sarah Palin said...

"What's the difference between a pit bull and a hockey mom? Lipstick."

Okay. If that's the way you want to play it. The words are yours. The Dem candidates played hands-off with you and your family difficulties and you repaid them with more nastiness in your speech than your limited experience entitles you to.

When those of us in the lower 48 first heard about Sarah Palin, there was a lot we had to learn about her. I, for one, was very impressed (and I remain impressed) by her decision to keep and deliver her baby with Downs Syndrome, especially when so many of them are destroyed these days as a result of the Alpha-Feta test.

I was sickened and disgusted when the Daily Kos and a slew of other guerilla-left blogs started speculating on the basis of very scant evidence whether Trig was actually Sarah's baby, or was in fact her daughter Bristol's. A multitude of fools started weighing in on tummy bulges, breast shape, amniotic fluid leaks and the hazards of air travel, and 40+ pregnancies based upon a handful of photographs, hardly knowing what the heck they were talking about.

In order to get out in front of these rumors, the McCain campaign announced the fact of Bristol's 5-month pregnancy.

Don't get me wrong. Even if the Trig story was true, I wouldn't have had a huge problem with it. Looking back at the history of my own family in generations past and my wife's family as well, there was lots of this stuff going on - people growing up thinking their mothers were their aunts, etc... As for teen pregnancies before marriage, this is the way a lot of America lives today; in fact it can be argued that it's a distinguishing characteristic of Red State America in particular. I have to note with some irony, however, that the Republican party seems to have changed quite a bit in this regard since Dan Quayle and the whole Murphy Brown controversy in 1988.

Just the same, there was something about the way Levi was frog-marched down to the convention ("welcome to the family, son"), cleaned up, and presented as something that he is not, that was disconcerting and got under my skin. If Sarah Palin wants to use Johnston and her own family members as props, and if she's been an advocate and booster of abstinence-only education, I'm not sure these situations should be entirely off the table for discussion.

As dribs and drabs come out about Sarah Palin's actual record in Alaska, and the lack of vetting that was done by the McCain campaign, I'm wondering if the bloom will soon be coming off the rose for her. There is something phony about the whole Palin packaging that seems to me like a ball of string just waiting to be unraveled.

As for the young couple, who knows? Theirs could be a true and wonderful love story... I encourage young men to step up, grow up, and face their responsibilities as much as anyone else would, but if these tidbits allegedly posted on his Myspace page are legit, I think there is some cause to believe he's being shotgunned, perhaps just a little bit...

"I'm a f - - -in' redneck" who likes to snowboard and ride dirt bikes.

"But I live to play hockey. I like to go camping and hang out with the boys, do some fishing, shoot some s- - - and just f - - -in' chillin' I guess."

"Ya f - - - with me I'll kick [your] ass," he added.

Under 'Status', he puts "in a relationship" and under 'Children', he writes "I don't want kids". Whoops.

Well, that about sums the Republican Convention up. USA, USA, USA... Drill, baby drill... Jesus, guns, and babies...

The party owned and run by the Business Roundtable and hedge fund managers is relying upon their self-described "redneck" foot soldiers to get this election won for them. Once again.


Garpu said...

As one who doesn't want kids, I can't imagine a worse situation for a person than to be forced into a marriage with someone who does. Yes, he should take care of his son, but I think he shouldn't be forced to be the parent he can't be. Am I making sense?

crystal said...

I saw another picture of the two kids hnaging out at (I think) a bar that looked very different from the one of them at the convention :) Someone on another blog cyncally pointed out that this marriage would make this guy's life pretty easy from now on - maybe he does want to get married.

Liam said...

I don't really care that much about the issue of her daughter, but you're absolutely right about her opening up herself to attacks. Apart from the abstinence-only thing, she also cut funding in her state for homeless teenage mothers.

I am also very sick of the hypocrisy of the GOP leaders and base. If a Democrat VP candidate's teenage daughter got pregnant, they would all be hollering about it being a values question. Imagine if the Obamas had a teenage daughter who got pregnant - a black teenage pregnancy! It would dominate the news cycle for two months.

Character and personal stories are essential for these people, except when they aren't. We have to hear over and over again about McCain's POW experience, but we can't talk about hoe he left his first wife because she was disfigured in a car accident. We're supposed to love the "hockey mom," but we can't talk about the pregnancy of her daughter as being a failure of parenting.

I'm not saying we should talk about those things, but it should be one thing or another.

Jeff said...

Hi Jen,

Sure. I hesitate to say more about the relationship than I know. If both families are on board, and offer tons of love and mutual support, these things can often work out. In the fishbowl in which they are going to be operating, though, I think it's going to be a very tough road for them.

If it was out daughter who was pregnant, we wouldn't push for it if the man in question was all wrong for her. I think even the Church recognizes that forcing a marriage under those circumstances isn't the best thing to do.

You're so adamant about not wanting children someday? Can you be so sure of that at this point?


Yeah, well there is that angle too, isn't there? One thing for sure, his life is going to be a lot different from what he had planned!

saw another picture of the two kids hanging out at (I think) a bar that looked very different from the one of them at the convention

I don't doubt it. But, you know, youth... There were plenty of times I saw Father John on Sunday mornings when I would have been very embarrassed if he'd seen me on Saturday night. You know what I mean?

Actually, that happened to me once. He was on emergency room duty at the local hospital one night when I showed up to have a stitch in my chin after a fight at a frat party.


That's a good point. If Michelle was touted as a "basketball mom", and if it was one of their daughters, we would have had another whole slew of lectures on everything that was wrong with the black community.

cowboyangel said...

Perhaps the best-case scenario for everyone is that McCain and Palin lose the election, people stop paying attention to Palin, so Levi gets left off the hook and gets to party and play hockey, and Bristol gets to meet a man who wants to be a father. The Palins get to be the Waltons, and we all live happily ever after.

Jeff said...

Does anyone second the motion from the gentleman from Texas?