Writing in The Los Angeles Times, feminist icon Gloria Steinem zeroes in on the real "culprit" in this whole Palin business:
So let's be clear: The culprit is John McCain. He may have chosen Palin out of change-envy, or a belief that women can't tell the difference between form and content, but the main motive was to please right-wing ideologues; the same ones who nixed anyone who is now or ever has been a supporter of reproductive freedom. If that were not the case, McCain could have chosen a woman who knows what a vice president does and who has thought about Iraq; someone like Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison or Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine. McCain could have taken a baby step away from right-wing patriarchs who determine his actions, right down to opposing the Violence Against Women Act.
So Palin is led by McCain, who in turn is led by right-wing patriarchs? And then…what, enter Xemu, laughing? Not particularly convincing (and I say this as someone who has no use for McCain). Btw, Hutchinson, dissed as "the Breck Girl," by late columnist Molly Ivins, is no fan of abortions.
Being a hope-a-holic, however, I can see two long-term bipartisan gains from this contest.
Republicans may learn they can't appeal to right-wing patriarchs and most women at the same time. A loss in November could cause the centrist majority of Republicans to take back their party, which was the first to support the Equal Rights Amendment and should be the last to want to invite government into the wombs of women.
And American women, who suffer more because of having two full-time jobs than from any other single injustice, finally have support on a national stage from male leaders who know that women can't be equal outside the home until men are equal in it. Barack Obama and Joe Biden are campaigning on their belief that men should be, can be and want to be at home for their children.
Hope-a-holic? Reminds of the great Onion bit: "I'm like a chocoholic, but for booze."
Whole Steinem thing here. I'm hoping that whatever happens in the fall, both Reps and Dems learn the value of things such as increased immigration, free trade, and non-idiotic foreign policy. All of which will be good for men, women, and children.
Interesting bit from New York Post's Andrea Peyser, re: the whole be at home Dad thing versus be at home Mom thing, which came up when Palin was first announced as McCain's dupe:
When Joe Biden tragically lost his wife and infant daughter in a car wreck in 1972, not a single colleague, friend or competitor advised him to quit his newly won Senate seat to raise his two little surviving sons.
Rather, he was sworn into office from the injured boys' bedside, and took to commuting an hour and a half each way from Delaware to Washington. And when Biden's second wife gave birth to a daughter, no one thought to ask him to step aside and stay home.