Will Girl Power Get In The Way?

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Ever since McCain announced Sarah Palin as his running mate, I’ve been battling with my intuition and the fight or flight reflex. My first thought was, “McCain’s desperate and is pulling all the stops.” I wanted to curse her, smash McCain’s face into a brick wall, and throw a temper tantrum of huge proportions. But eventually I calmed down.

I have to say, I’m a woman and I kinda like this woman. She’s got style and she’s cute (and a redhead to boot). She’s smart. She’s got balls (to say half of what she does takes big ones). She can shoot a gun (I really like that!). But, (and there’s always a but), she’s like most of us…not perfect [here’s where you consider her positions on abortion, oil drilling, racism, the war in Iraq, etc.!]

I’d honestly love to see a woman in the White House. I remember how excited I was with Hillary’s campaign…and how disappointed after she “lost.” But as much as I like Sarah Palin (excluding her politics), she isn’t big enough for the job and simply can’t sweeten McCain’s platform enough to forgive his shortcomings. His is just too big a pill to swallow.

That’s what the Democrats should be touting! By attacking her, we fuel the fire and give her more air time. Neither Republican nominee is worthy of our energy.

According to various polls, this race is getting a little dicey. Republicans are throwing kidney punches and trying everything they can. Sad thing is, as it relates to some of the less informed, this is a successful tactic. Many average voters buy into the sensational, salacious, homespun, rhetorical musings and get riled up about the silliest things they feel are powerful points. It truly speaks to the power of a biased media.

We all know how far right FOX news has become; and MSNBC certainly makes up for it with their left-leaning bias. Meanwhile CNN struggles to stay somewhere in the middle.

With regard to the “Pig in Lipstick” comments, sure there are many people who know that is a well bantered political term. It only means you can’t dress up your old politics and call them new. But pundits and well…. shit stirrers take those comments and apply them to an attack on Palin. Quite frankly, I’m not so sure it wasn’t an attack. It’s certainly not something I’ve ever heard Obama say before, and perhaps the campaign figured they’d have a little fun with it and plead “innocent.” However, people heard it from his lips and seriously thought he was calling her a pig. They ran with that…the media ran with it.

I personally think it was careless of Obama…whether he meant for it to be taken that way or not. As big as the lipstick comment was at the Republican National Convention, my opinion is that it was more than an oversight. And women everywhere find themselves questioning Obama’s position on women’s rights, equality and the like. I actually winced when I heard him say the words. It just sounded way uncomfortable.

Now here we are, relishing in the Saturday Night Live skit that for many gave permission to laugh out loud at the expense of Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton who, in many ways, represent well every element of the lengthy battle for equality in the United States. While it may be an opportunity to laugh at the current political situation, it’s yet another musing that helps less informed voters get excited about nonsense. (Many are out there buying whatever eyeglasses Sarah is wearing, and I have never seen so many pant suits at Macy’s!)

donna-perdue.gifI think the Democrats need to put on some white gloves, do a bit of house cleaning and show a little more urgency. We’re not ahead by that much and according to some polls, we’re even slipping behind. Why are we acting like we’re afraid of this woman? Obama has put together the best platform of change for all of us…it’s balanced, it’s fair, and it’s smart. This is an all hands on deck type situation. (A little nautical reference for my fellow Marines!) We need to promote the positivity and do away with the Karl Rovian jabs. They are so transparent and make us vulnerable…something we are not! Like Chris Rock said, if you’re tied or not winning by a land slide, you’ve lost because they will find a way to take it from you.

Donna Perdue

Donna Perdue. After 22 years of service as a print journalist, photographer, and international media coordinator in the US Marine Corps, Donna is now a business owner in Cleveland, Ohio, where she resides with her husband and son. A Democrat turned Republican and recently converted back to Democrat, Donna is anxious for the USA to leave Iraq. She is especially proud of her military service while in the Horn of Africa 2005-2006. Working with the US Embassies and host nation governments of 11 East African nations, she coordinated all aspects of media access for domestic and international audiences. Seeing much disparity while growing up in inner-city Baltimore, Donna has dedicated a good portion of her personal time to advocating for the underprivileged. While realizing she’s lost much of her former street credibility, during the past five years she’s volunteered at an Ohio Maximum Security Detention facility for boys teaching a Junior Achievement economics package to 17-22 year-old men preparing to re-enter society. Donna’s most notable achievements include: becoming a mom, being a Marine, earning her gray belt in Marine Corps Martial Arts, driving a forklift, firing expert eight times with an M16, running eight marathons, and marrying the greatest guy in the world!

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Published by the LA Progressive on September 23, 2008
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