Man, was I wrong. Picking Sarah Palin was NOT about trolling for women, it was about pandering to frightened white people. It was about the wink-wink racism that appeals to those who are afraid of people of color and of losing their guns (and not necessarily in that order).
I was/am appalled by the meanness of her speech last night. And the absolute obtuseness of the party-line-toeing Republicans about what it means to be anything other than white in America. I’m white. About as white as you can get. But I also understand that there is not one America, not even two Americas. Every person experiences the dream of America differently–and very often that experience is colored by that person’s race/gender/socio-economic status. Some of us have bootstraps to pull ourselves up by. Others need “community organizers” to help us get boots, first, straps next.
Palin was offered up as a counter not to Hillary, but to Michelle Obama, whose experience in America has to be as starkly different from Palin’s. It was never difficult for me to hear Michelle Obama talk about being proud to be American in the context in which she said it. It was never difficult for me to understand that my white, lower-middle-class upbringing is not the only “norm” in America. And it has never been difficult for me to understand that one can love something/someone, and still not always be proud of it, but love it enough to coax it toward change for the better–and for all.
Perhaps there are two Americas, populated by two very distinct groups: those who are willing to attempt to understand what the world looks like from another set of eyes, and those who are not.
I’m desperately sad this morning. I was so wrong about this pick. And I think McCain/Palin can win with the same dirty, mean politics of the past eight years.
And yes, I’m going to send my contribution to the Obama/Biden ticket today, because it is imperative that those of us who can envision justice from different sets of eyes prevail. Now.