Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Practice what you preach

Straying into the American presidential elections is hardly necessary, it’s been covered to oblivion since February but the news that Sarah Palin’s, McCain's running mate (how nice he has someone to go jogging with), daughter is pregnant has that classic smack of political hypocrisy, on many levels.

McCain’s campaign has said, according to the BBC story, "Senator McCain's view is this is a private family matter” – spokesman for John McCain, Steve Schmidt. Barack Obama said, "I think people's families are off-limits, and people's children are especially off-limits.”

But apparently Sarah Palin has been bringing her children on stage at election rallies – no doubt to promote a ‘healthy, American family’ to the voters. So if she can use them for positives, why can’t they be criticised? It’s not the children’s fault of course – they may well have no wish to go on stage, but it’s naïve and hypocritical for the politicians to urge the media away from focusing on the children when a negative story comes along concerning them, which obviously reflects on the parents in some way, if at the same time they are being used to promote a certain image of positivity.

The second problem is the pregnancy itself. Palin is a well known, or ‘rabid’ as some have been terming it, anti-abortionist. This means her daughter will be having the baby, at 17 – but this is okay because the Palins are a loving family you see. "Bristol and the young man she will marry are going to realise very quickly the difficulties of raising a child, which is why they will have the love and support of our entire family."

I doubt the daughter and ‘the young man’ want to get married, but are merely doing so to make the pregnancy a little bit less embarrasing. If Palin were such a great mother perhaps she would have explained to her daughter the dangers of getting pregnant at 17 to a 'young man'. You’d expect that as a matter of course from any ‘normal’ parent but for the governor of Alaska, who is now involved in the presidential elections – where much preaching about morals will be handed out – to be in this predicament doesn’t come across very well.

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