Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Go Away, Sarah Palin

It's a sad thing when fame or perceived fame goes straight to a person's head. It's especially sad when it goes to a person's head and by the time it gets there, it is completely distorted. Such is the case with a one Sarah Palin.

For full disclosure, I liked Sarah Palin. Right up until a couple of weeks ago, I was fine with whatever it was that she was out there spouting. Granted, I didn't listen to a whole lot of it because I'm not overly convinced that she knows about anything that she's trying to talk about. And I'll also give you that she is simply lovely to look at. Don't get me wrong, I've seen hotter. Heck, I'm friends with hotter. But she is simply lovely to look at. But your looks can only get you so far. Once you and your looks both start camping out in Idiotville, I don't care what you look like. I'm done.

Here's the thing: Last week, the former barely half-term governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, got all hot and bothered over a comment that serial curser and current Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel had said. Apparently, Rahm was involved in a weekly strategy session that consisted of various liberal groups and some White House aides. What the group's plan was involved airing ads that went after those Democrats who weren't going along with the whole overhaul of health care dealio. Yep. That was their plan. To attack members of their own party because they disagreed with what was in the health care bill. Brilliant. And I'm not the only one who thought that way.

Apparently Rahm thought along similar lines, but instead of offering up a sarcastic "Brilliant" as I just did, he instead offered up a "F***ing retarded." He then went on to explain that alienating people whose votes you will and do ultimately need is not a good idea. Duh.

Sarah Palin gets wind of that and flips out. According to an article over there at the New York Post, Mrs. Palin took to Facebook to write a note that basically chastised Rahm for his use of the word "retarded". She characterized it as being in the same category as if he had used the N-word. I don't know if I'd go quite that far with it. And I realize that her hyper-sensitivity to the term likely stems from her having a son who has Down Syndrome. But the term and the comment both were not directed at her son or at anyone who has organic developmental challenges. It just wasn't. It was directed at people who were acting like birdbrains.

For some reason, Rahm felt the need to apologize and, of all things, to call up the head of the Special Olympics and apologize to him for making the comment that he did. Why was that? I don't know what the Special Olympics has to do with anything. I also don't know why he's apologizing for something that was said in private and wasn't meant in a derogatory manner toward anyone other than the ones that it was directed at. I have no idea why he apologized to the head of the Special Olympics, but I guess it would have looked bad for him to not apologize at all. Then again, he did make the comment last year. Wait. He...he....he what now?

Correct. That comment that he made that Sarah Palin got her waders in a knot over was made in August. Are you kidding me?! Come on! There has got to be a statute of limitations on when you can freak out over something that someone said. And in this case, being as how it was a private conversation that wasn't in the press or anything, I'm thinking that statute ran out about five minutes after the conversation was over back in August of 2009! You can be just now complaining about it, Sarah! Come on now! You might not like it, but you don't get to chastise the man for something he said six months ago during a conversation in which you're only hearing about the contents of thirdhand at best! If you're going to start picking apart what people are saying, you're really going to have to do it at the time it was said. After six minutes it loses a little bit of it's steam, so you can imagine how ridiculous you sound bringing it up after six months, right?

She might be really surprised to learn what every single person in this country says when they are speaking privately with other human beings. It ain't pretty, I'll tell you that. But what she's failing to miss here (and I'm going to leave Rahm Emanuel out of this part of the discussion) is that the use of the term "retarded" in situations such as the one it was used in have absolutely nothing to do with folks who may, at one time, have been considered to be labeled as such.

If I use the term "retarded' in a manner as did Rahm (and I do, by the way), I am in no way maligning those with developmental challenges. When I see someone with Down Syndrome or any other sort of developmental and/or mental disability, I don't think of them as retarded. I just don't. At one point in my life, I'm sure that I would have. But it has been drilled successfully into everyone's head that the term "retarded" is not acceptable anymore to describe those people. (And I'm not meaning the term "those people" to be derogatory either, so just back off!) Thus, they're not thought of that way by people. But for some reason, Sarah Palin hears the word "retarded" used and she automatically thinks that people are making fun of people with mental challenges. Not so. Not so at all (in most cases).

The use of the term "retarded" in the way that Rahm Emanuel used it is not meant as anything derogatory toward people with mental challenges. Sarah Palin needs to remember that she is not the savior of this country. She needs to remember that it is not her job to chastise this administration or any administration. If she wants to get her grass roots thing all rooted and grassy and up and going, I support that idea one hundred percent. But she isn't going to gain enough credibility which a large enough group of people that will enable her to accomplish anything of meaning (other than a huge paycheck for herself) if she continues along this sanctimonious line of faux offense through various interpersonal conversations of which she had nothing to do with.

I didn't think I'd be saying this so soon, but I'd really like to just see Sarah Palin go away. Oh, and if she could take that tool of an almost-son-in-law-who-knocked-up-her-daughter Levi Johnston with her, I would be doubly appreciative.

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