In a short discussion with a friend at the University of Florida the other day, I brought up that I did not like Sarah Palin. Initially my reasons were that I considered her to be remarkably stupid (and she did a fine job making that case for me in the debates, and elsewhere), but my friend disagreed. She said that Sarah Palin was going through a lot and that she was simply folding under pressure. Why? Because Palin had, apparently, sent her son off to Iraq just prior to heading out to do all those interviews that made her look pretty much unprepared for the position she had been nominated to run for. My rebuttal to this ended the conversation because of a fundamental disagreement between us, but it is this rebuttal that I want to display here.
I do not care whether or not Sarah Palin sent her son off to Iraq prior to running as vice president. Why? Because if she cannot handle that kind of pressure, how the hell does she expect me or America to believe she can handle the pressure of the oval office? What if she had been President? Would we simply give her an out because she was having a hard time in her personal life? No. And why? Because the people who run this country do not have the luxury of allowing their personal lives to affect the way they function as politicians. We have that luxury (we being non-politicians, all the various collars of workers, etc.), and as such, we expect those who make sure the gears keep turning to have the moral, physical, and psychological fortitude to do their jobs (with exception, perhaps, to unexpected serious illness, like a heart attack). If Sarah Palin were President and sent her son off to Iraq, it would not be acceptable for her to act un-according to her position; we would expect her to do the same job she should have been doing before, keeping us safe, enacting policy, etc. A lapse in that, particularly in a time of war or during a crisis, is simply unacceptable. From individuals outside of that position, perhaps it is acceptable. I do no begrudge average mothers being terrified about their sons; I do not find anything wrong with grieving or displaying any sort of emotion. I do, however, have an issue with someone in a sensitive position performing excessively poorly and other people telling me that I have to give them a break. No. If you have your finger on the big red button, I will not give you a break for pushing it in a fit of emotion, nor in any other instance in which other people might be harmed by an inability to do one’s job as President, Senator, or whatever other political position there might be. We expect more of our politicians, or we should.
So, Sarah Palin’s send off of her son, assuming that’s true, is not an excuse for poor quality of action. It’s not. If that is her reason, I don’t care. She had a job to do, and she failed to do it adequately. She lost as a result and was labeled by her actions. And this is not even talking about her pre-mature resignation from the position of Alaska’s Governor, an entirely new issue that demonstrates, to me, why she is not fit for office. Why anyone would look at her and think she deserves a slot in the oval office is beyond me. She quit Alaska. She wasn’t impeached, the position wasn’t terminated without her knowledge (and that would be silly, since Alaska needs a governor), or any other reason. She quit. Just imagine to yourself, if you will, what it would be like if she quit as President. What then? Exactly.
And that is all I have to say about that. Again, this will not be regular here. This blog is about science fiction, fantasy, writing, and things related to that; it is not about politics unless it is directly relevant to the previously mentioned categories. But every so often I have to speak my mind.
Feel free to leave angry messages in the comments. Or argue with me, if you like.