The politics of family

2 Sep

I’m one of the Republicans who’s been excited about the choice of Sarah Palin to be McCain’s running mate.  A few days before the selection was announced, I had told Bill (you can ask him) that it would be ideal if McCain could choose a female governor.  I was excited by the idea that Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson was on the short list of potential nominees — but because Obama picked another Senator to be his running mate (a huge mistake in my never humble opinion) that Senator Hutchinson (in spite of being a great public servant) would not be a great pick — anyway….I didn’t really know of any female governors — still don’t really — but now I do know one more than I did last week — Sarah Palin.  The biggest surprise to me was her age — she’s about 18 months older than I am….it’s a little like being treated by a med student….these are the people that are always supposed to be older than you are…..much older.  But aside from that….the little I know about Governor Palin — I really like her.  However, since her selection we’ve seen one of the most disgusting political attacks ever….the rumor that her 5th child was actually her grandson and she was covering up the pregnancy of her 17-year-old daughter.  Also several liberal bloggers have raised questions about Governor Palin and if she by negligence had contributed to her son’s down-syndrome.  That for me is an amazing low and ignorant blow and actually churns my stomach to even consider that notion — let alone write it.  It’s stunning that there are cold heartless types out there who would go so far.  

Since some of these things have been “out there” on the liberal blogs….hate-filled screeds….the McCain campaign has now announced that Bristol Palin (the daughter who was the supposed mother) is currently pregnant out-of-wedlock and plans to marry the father of the baby.  Whew…..I think we all have to take a step back here….I will say the statement from the McCain campaign attributed to Sarah Palin was incredibly classy 

“Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. We’re proud of Bristol’s decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents,” Sarah and Todd Palin said in their brief statement. “Bristol and the young man she will marry are going to realize very quickly the difficulties of raising a child, which is why they will have the love and support of our entire family.”

Listen — this is something no parent would like to face….but I appreciate the love that the Palin’s are expressing at the same time acknowledging this is not what they would have chosen for her.  I think this is the kind of compassion we need to see demonstrated by parents and frankly — people everywhere.  My biggest question then becomes….as a mother….would I have willingly brought this kind of publicity on my family even if it meant accepting the honor of running for Vice President.  I’m not sure….and of course we are not privileged (nor should we be) to the Palin family discussions on this subject.  Maybe the best way to deal with the issue of teen-pregnancy is to have a family handling it as best they can — warts and all — be front and center.  Regardless — this is an amazingly challenging time for this family…..God bless them and keep them, give them wisdom and something we all need — mercy and grace.


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