Sarah Palin’s unmarried daughter Bristol pregnant

Palin’s daughter is five months pregnant with the child of Wallisa resident Levi Johnston. She is nursing and nurturing an infant with Down’s syndrome. Wouldn’t a responsible mother withdraw her vice presidential candidacy?

I expect some reporters and many bloggers will look into Sarah Palin’s past statements about teenage birth control and abstinence only education and batter her with them. This will cause her daughter great emotional pain. That alone is reason for her to step down.

I think most in the mainstream and the responsible left wing media will be responsible and let this remain a family matter and respect the Palin’s privacy. But despite what Barack Obama said about the media needing to back off (LINK ) and this not being about the campaign, it is relevant to the campaign because she is running on, among other things, family values.

The right wing media would be all over any Democrat running in part on family values whose 17 year old unmarried daughter got pregnant.

I don’t think this has anything to do with morality. Indeed it is largely a family matter and for Bristol and her (now) fiance’s sake I hope they are left alone. To assure this they both must be taken out of the public spotlight. It’s only a matter of time before Levi’s identity is known.

Let them have and raise the family in peace, and with the guidance of their parents if and only if they want to have it. I haven’t read anyone raise the possibility that they don’t.

Unlike some bloggers I don’t hold Sarah Palin’s views on sex education against her in this case. We don’t know whether or not Governor Palin made the case for abstinence but also presented the option sexual activity short of intercourse or of using birth control if Bristol decided to have sex. That is sensible sex education which is based on adolsecent psychology.

Even with the best sex education teenagers often ignore even the best advice from their parents and teachers. They often rebel against their parents and other authority figures attempting to control their sexual behavior.

Sex is fun teenagers say, and with a few notable exceptions most unmarried teenaged girls don’t think it will be them who gets pregnant with unprotected sex.

I do have to question Palin’s judgment and commitment to family though because on top of everything else Sarah Palin knew she’d be dealing with when she accepted the VP offer, she also knew her daughter was five months pregnant.

Of course this assumes she is telling the truth that she knew about her daughter’s pregnancy during the vetting before McCain made the offer to her. Teenagers have been known to hide their pregnancies well into the second trimester.

We also can only take McCain’s word that he knew of Bristol’s pregnancy before he approved her selection. If he didn’t, if Palin hid it, then he’d have little choice but to withdraw her name and take the political consequences.

Readers will have to ask themselves if the McCain campaign explanations are plausible:

Along a similar line, ( campaign chief Steve Schmidt) was asked if the increasing burden of a family that now will have an added grandchild of a teenage daughter could be too much for the vice president, should McCain and Palin win election.

“I can’t imagine that question being asked of a man,” Schmidt said. “It’s offensive.”

So we asked Schmidt this: Some critics are suggesting that McCain would not have tapped Palin for running mate, given her credentials and experience, if she were a man.

“It’s a really interesting question – I’m fascinated by it,” Schmidt replied. “She is, by any objective experience, more accomplished than Sen. Obama…. We’ll stack up her accomplishments against his any day of the week… Governors run things.” Read more here.

If she continues to run I hope Sarah Palin will make room in her busy schedule for family counseling, and just quiet time to be with her husband and children.

And I haven’t even mentioned “troopergate” and the possibility it could explode into a major scandal…

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66 Responses to "Sarah Palin’s unmarried daughter Bristol pregnant"

  1. Hal Brown  September 1, 2008 at 10:07 pm

    gazelle, good points but I have another perspective;

    It is not our place to ask such questions as, “Is she being a responsible parent?” Only she and her husband and the parents of the young man can decide what is best for these two kids. Only they can decide what is responsible parenthood.

    Why not ask such questions and make recommendations? As a therapist I’d tell them to get Bristol and Levi out of the limelight. I’d suggest BOTH parents on both sides need to be there for these young parents to be. For Sarah this will be difficult enough even if she withdraws considering she also has a special needs baby.

    Though I almost didn’t say this, I will conclude by saying that, after eight years of Dick Cheney, would not the world be better off with a vice president who did what vice presidents usually do: nothing?

    On the face of it this makes sense, except she needs to be a very active vice president because this is on the job training should McCain die or become inform.

  2. bryan mcclellan  September 1, 2008 at 10:39 pm

    Bait and switch is all it is. Much the same as bush and harriet, take the eyes off the issues and ram the innocuous down our throats before we can taste and spit.

    Palin is a team player who was sacrificed, no more, no less, and no doubt gleefully has embraced her chance at 15 minutes.

    Back to chewing seal hides with a fattened oil stock portfolio.Wheres that confounded bridge?

  3. Hal Brown  September 1, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    I’ve made a number of additions to the column.

  4. Siannan  September 1, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    I’m bothered by a number of the comments here. You can be the most responsible parent in the world, but let’s face it, you cannot live on top of your child 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I have two children. One is a 25 year old crack addict, the other is a 4.0 GPA 20 year old college student. I raised both children basically almost the same (allowing for gender issues), so go figure.

    Ms. Palin’s 17 year old daughter’s pregnancy should not be a reflection of her parenting ability, because we all know that almost adult children are going to do what they are going to do. At some point in time, you have to realize that you did the job you did, and you can only hope that what you taught them stuck. As evidenced by my crack addict son, some of it will not.

    I will say, that this is further proof that abstinence is nothing more than a farce, however, Ms. Palin will probably fail to acknowledge that.

    One more note, I see no reason for Ms. Palin to withdraw because of this. There are other issues that I think would cause her to have to withdraw, but a pregnancy, which is a natural function of life, is hardly a reason to withdraw from anything, let alone an election.

  5. Flapsaddle  September 1, 2008 at 11:09 pm

    Sorry, but I, too, believe that you are applying a double standard – even though it is motivated by your professional assessment. It sounds somewhat as if you believe that only women – both parents, perhaps? – who have “normal” children should undertake such political activity.

    John F. Kennedy took his wife through the 1960 campaign when she was pregnant with “John-John” and despite her history of miscarriages and complications. Was JFK being irresponsible?

    My daughter’s oldest is a Downs child and her second is genetically normal, and with that to deal with she undertook law school, graduated in the top quarter of the class, passed the bar on the first try, and is now a successful IP lawyer in Seattle. Was she being irresponsible?

    I think Sarah Palin and her husband are the ones best qualified to assess what is “responsible” for their family. The may end up being wrong, and they will suffer the consequences, but it will have been their choice.

    Most sincerely,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  6. Carl Nemo  September 1, 2008 at 11:14 pm

    “Back to chewing seal hides with a fattened oil stock portfolio. Wheres that confounded bridge?”…

    Great imagery Bryan. :)) Your writings often make my day.

    Thanks too Hal Brown for the spot-on analysis concerning the Palin’s and their demontration of “family values not at work”… :|

    Carl Nemo **==

  7. bryan mcclellan  September 1, 2008 at 11:45 pm

    This begs the question/s; what kind of people would offer a hamstrung individual such an opportunity?
    And furthermore is public service the main reason for acceptance of a very withering task that knowingly will have a profound effect on ones family?

  8. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 12:39 am

    I am sure that Palin is a very qualified person.
    I am sure that I don’t have the least problem with the fact that they are human beings with all the attendant hiccups common to many American families.

    I have a problem with the fact that the Republican Party hasn’t got the guts or grapes to take the same questioning they’ve doled out in large lumps to the Democratic slate of hopefuls.

    If they can’t stand the heat, let them take Sarah Palin and her preggo daughter out of the kitchen, and let them resolve from now on to play nice and play fair if they don’t want what’s going around to come around.

    Let them continue screeching like wounded deer about how “privacy is the issue” and how Palin’s brood is “an American family” and how we should be ashamed for having the gall to question anything about their sainted lady, and it’s only going to get worse, for them. Hypocrisy can only stand for so long before the roof caves in on their heads. They’re already starting to look and sound like Larry Craig all over again.

  9. acf  September 2, 2008 at 1:10 am

    From what I have seen thus far, the issue doesn’t seem to be one of a female candidate, but one of a candidate who puts herself out there as an arbiter of propriety. In other words, if she wasn’t sold as a paragon of virtue to the Christian right, then she wouldn’t be vulnerable when her family doesn’t walk the walk, as well as talk the talk. Joe Biden doesn’t sell himself in the way that Sarah Palin does. If his teen aged daughter turned up pregnant out of wedlock, it wouldn’t be the same problem, politically speaking. Of course, within each family unit, the problem would be alike.

  10. Stratocaster  September 2, 2008 at 3:39 am

    For what it is worth, try the following link. There is a lot of speculation on the subject.

    http://gawker.com/5043944/the-truth-about-those-sarah-palin-pregnancy-coverup-rumors

  11. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 6:55 am

    “Morning Joe” Scarborough said the media stumbled out of the gate on the Palin story. It is finally taken center stage in the news with the top online headline in The New York Times “Disclosures on Palin Raise Questions on Vetting Process” LINK.

    Excerpt:

    several Republicans said, Mr. McCain was getting advice that if he did not do something to shake up the race, his campaign would be stuck on a potentially losing trajectory.

    With time running out — and as Mr. McCain discarded two safer choices, Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, as too predictable — he turned to Ms. Palin. He had his first face-to-face interview with her on Thursday and offered her the job moments later(emphasis added). Advisers to Mr. Pawlenty and another of the finalists on Mr. McCain’s list described an intensive vetting process for those candidates that lasted one to two months.

    “They didn’t seriously consider her until four or five days from the time she was picked, before she was asked, maybe the Thursday or Friday before,” said a Republican close to the campaign. “This was really kind of rushed at the end, because John didn’t get what he wanted. He wanted to do Joe or Ridge.”

    Here’s a quote from another New York Times article this morning, which expresses the question I raised in my column.

    “When you combine the special-needs infant with the pregnant teen, some voters might wonder why she is pursuing political ambitions at the expense of maternal or family responsibilities,” said Don Sipple, a Republican strategist and past adviser to George W. Bush in Texas. “News Analysis: In Political Realm, ‘Family Problem’ Emerges as Test” By ADAM NAGOURNEY

    Here’s the third front page story from The New York Times: “Palin Daughter’s Pregnancy Interrupts Script” (link) which three pieces of information I wasn’t aware of. Palin “waited until she was seven months pregnant to make public news that she was expecting a fifth child this year, a pregnancy that was complicated by Down syndrome.” I can understand wanting to be sure she’d bring the baby to term without a miscarriage (after all consider her age) so perhaps she waited until she got assurances from her doctor. But it is still new information.

    Now we know that Palin has something significant in common with her daughter:

    The Palins eloped on Aug. 29, 1988, and their first son, Track, was born eight months later (emphasis added), a fact that Maria Comella of the McCain campaign, declined to elaborate on. “They were high school sweethearts who got married and ended up having five beautiful children together…”

    Also revealed is the now about to be famous Levi’s last name, Johnston.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if by the end of the day the new Republican candidate for V.P. is Romney or Pawlenty.

  12. Watchman  September 2, 2008 at 7:08 am

    If the idea was to draw more female voters to the Rep ticket it is working. Palin is an instant celebrity and American women will love Palin for her family problems.

    A pregnant teenage daughter? It is the standard soap opera plot.

    For one thing teenage offspring are notoriously hard to control and it is hard to blame Palin for what her daughter is up to at night.

    For another women will be supportive of Palin’s trouble just as they were supportive of Hillary when Bill was fooling around.

    Dems harassing Palin for these things will only backfire.

  13. keith  September 2, 2008 at 7:34 am

    Hypocrisy can only stand for so long before the roof caves in on their heads. They’re already starting to look and sound like Larry Craig all over again.

    Bingo!

    Clearly, the ONLY reason Mr. McCain has survived this long is because the political pabulum he keeps preaching…winning the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan militarily…. is the last great (and I would say ONLY) hope the Republican Party now has left to sell in this country, particularly among its own far right followers.

    With the horrifically bungled military strategy they concocted in waging the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (remember the “Mission Accomplished” banner?) they obviously can’t now sell themselves as militarily competent.

    And by adding hoards of stupid, Homeland Security goon squads to an already over-bloated federal bureaucracy (armed with standing orders to strip search us at airports, tap our telephones at will, sift through all our e-mails, and then tell us we are “more secure” from an enemy that they, themselves have created) they certainly can’t pass themselves off as the party of “smaller government”.

    What’s more, with gasoline now headed north of $4 per gallon, and with once solid banks losing hundreds of billions of dollars in capital all the while even fiscally responsible people are losing their homes to foreclosure, they can no longer champion themselves as good stewards of the US economy.

    Clearly, by adding some $4 Trillion (with a “T”) to the national debt since Mr. Bush took office, they certainly can no longer offer themselves up as the party of fiscal responsibility, either.

    And, now, by silently condoning the shenanigans of the growing list of Senator Larry Craigs and Congressman Tom Foleys (not to mention trying to rationalize away the fact that the daughter of their recent VP pick has been living in “sin”), the steadfast insistence that they, alone, represent the party of “family values” now reeks with hypocrisy as well.

    It would all be comic if it wasn’t so sad.

  14. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 7:25 am

    I don’t know if independent female voters will buy the sales job presenting Palin as a combination of everywoman and Wonder Woman. Is she able to run for national office, deal with a political controversy in Alaska involving her and the state police, and spend enough time with a special needs infant and a pregnant 17 yr. old daughter?

    There’s no denying that as long as she is running her daughter will be the focus of media attention because now SHE too has gone from obscurity to become an instant celebrity.

    Now the public will not just be following every bump in the polls, but a baby bump as well. Not only that, but handsome daddy-to-be Levi is poised to be a celebrity.

    I don’t know if his MySpace page has been taken down, I expect it has. But not before quotes like this have been made public:

    “But I live to play hockey. I like to go camping and hang out with the boys, do some fishing, shoot some s- – – and just f – – -in’ chillin’ I guess.”

    “Ya f – – – with me I’ll kick [your] ass,” he added.

    He also claims to be “in a relationship,” but states, “I don’t want kids.” NY Post article here

    Welcome to the Palin family Levi.

    How do you spell paparazzi?

    Guess whose Secret Service detail will rival that of a candidate for president’s spouse, if not a president?

  15. JerZGirl  September 2, 2008 at 9:06 am

    Her responsibility isn’t to her family – her responsibility is to “the party“. She is the golden child to lead them to victory in November. She is ultra-conservative, evangelical and female. She will draw the Hillary-ites over (a group of Democrat traitors who don’t care about getting rid of Bush, only about getting a woman into office – an effort as equally sexist as what they claim occurred to Hillary). She espouses the “hot button” issues far-right Conservatives love (anti-gay, anti-abortion, pro-gun, pro-abstinence – despite her own personal evidence that it doesn’t work), and she’s very attractive (a plus for some I’ve overheard, apparently). People wonder why McCain didn’t take a lot of time to talk to her before choosing her – that’s because HE didn’t choose her. He was CONVINCED to choose her. And, if Democrats don’t immediately join together in strength of numbers to help Barrack Obama get elected in November, stop the silly rumor mills that only undermine what respect they have remaining, and start focusing on ISSUES and proven hypocrisy instead of what MIGHT BE true, they might just be able to keep the Republicans out of the White House. But, ONLY if they work together and keep it HONEST AND HONORABLE.

    ————————————————–
    “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” -Mark Twain

  16. gazelle1929  September 2, 2008 at 9:41 am

    How do you spell paparazzi?

    a-s-s-h-o-l-e

  17. gazelle1929  September 2, 2008 at 9:44 am

    “And, if Democrats don’t immediately join together in strength of numbers to help Barrack Obama get elected in November, stop the silly rumor mills that only undermine what respect they have remaining, and start focusing on ISSUES and proven hypocrisy instead of what MIGHT BE true, they might just be able to keep the Republicans out of the White House. But, ONLY if they work together and keep it HONEST AND HONORABLE.”

    At last! The voice from the wilderness. Right on, JerZ.

  18. ekaton  September 2, 2008 at 9:46 am

    Hmmm. Honest and honorable politicians. Hmmm.

    — Kent Shaw

  19. bryan mcclellan  September 2, 2008 at 9:50 am

    Brain activity versus the crystal ball of crud.If only they could hear you JerZ. Well said.

  20. JerZGirl  September 2, 2008 at 10:09 am

    ‘They didn’t seriously consider her until four or five days from the time she was picked, before she was asked, maybe the Thursday or Friday before,’ said a Republican close to the campaign. ‘This was really kind of rushed at the end, because John didn’t get what he wanted. He wanted to do Joe or Ridge.’

    Does this sound like McCain made his own VP choice? Could I have actually been right in that he had no say in who would run next to him? It sounds to me like they did a last minute switch in order to pander to the disenfranchised Hillary Dems as well as the religious right, just as I have suspected. I guess they really did fear losing to Obama. Which means, people, Obama still stands a chance, so if you want Bush politics OUT OF DC, get pushing to get Obama elected!!

    ————————————————–
    “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” -Mark Twain

  21. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 10:20 am

    Not only parenting, and what I consider best for the family from a mental health perspective, but here’s a slant from Jane Smiley which I hadn’t thought of:

    The issues of birth control and abortion have been made into public issues by the right wing, and millions of women and girls have suffered because the right wing wants to impose its ideas of what women should do upon every woman in America including those who don’t share and have never shared their values. So, Barack (who advised reporters to “back off” stories about people’s families, especially children HB ), I suggest that you, as a man, should do the backing off.

    Bristol Palin’s pregnancy, which her mother has known about for months, is at the heart of this battle. It has been shown over and over that abstinence education doesn’t work, while sex education does work. Do I accept that teenagers have sex? You bet I do, and I tell the ones I have borne how to make it safe and what to watch out for and be careful of, girls and boys. Sarah Palin, for whatever reason, did not do the same thing, and yet she presumes, PRESUMES, to tell me as a mother and a woman what I can and cannot do with my body, and what I can and cannot provide for my children. Read entire column here

  22. pollchecker  September 2, 2008 at 10:52 am

    Queston for Hal:

    Hal, here is the part I don’t get. Perhaps as a psychotherapist who dabbles in politics you can explain it to me.

    Senator Obama’s mother was an 18 year old single parent. She worked hard to give her son the very best that was available to a single parent.

    When she died, he was raised by his white grandparents. As far as I can tell, they were pretty middle class, average family. They apparently had some good moral values because they raised an African American grandchild which in those days (the sixties)could not have been an easy task.

    They apparently taught Obama what every parent attempts to teach their kids…that if they work hard in school, they can go to college and become whatever they dream of becoming.

    Senator Obama lived the American Dream in that he did just that…he worked hard, graduated college, went to Law School, made good grades, headed the Harvard Law Review, came back and gave back to his community in terms of service instead of taking a high paid job with some High End Law Firm.

    Yes he makes enough money to have a nice house in a nice neighborhood but isn’t that what everybody works for? Isn’t that the American Dream?

    He goes to church, he is down to earth with his monetary choices as he or his family have not turned in $500 shoes or high priced designer outfits. He’s not an adulterer and apparently is respectful of his elders and others in places of authority even when he disagrees with them personally.

    Now keeping all that in mind, how in the world would anyone call Obama an “elitist” and then turn around and represent this woman, Sarah Palin, as “someone of a higher standard” or John McCain as someone “who understands the plight of the Average Joe”? It boggles my mind that they believe anyone would buy that BS.

    Do they really think we are THAT STUPID? Or do they just think people are that complacent?

    See this is the stuff that I am talking about. It’s sickening and dirty and demeaning but OK because it’s the RNC….Tribune Ignores GOP Request Not To Publish Errant ‘Rush Limbaugh Email’

  23. sherry  September 2, 2008 at 11:06 am

    Thank you TJ Flapsaddle. I cannot believe the comments being made about this woman.
    Secondly, while Obama said the story is off limits, Donna Brazile said on CNN the daughter, Bristol Palin is fair game.
    I am not sure Palin is qualified. I have serious questions
    having nothing to do with her family situation.
    She does however have more executive experience than Obama. She has run a state, balanced a budget. Her ideology doesn’t bother me so much as having zero foreign policy experience.

  24. knockknock  September 2, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Theoretically, Palin’s nomination was merely to deflect attention from the Democratic Convention and all the superb speeches.

    If I’m right, then it succeeded.

    The Republicans don’t intend for Palin to be veep and they never did.

    This is another brilliant, hateful ploy by the Republicans.

    Palin can be replaced as soon as she has served her purpose.

    Any time now … tick tick tick

  25. Flapsaddle  September 2, 2008 at 11:46 am

    There is the stink of hypocrisy about this, as pointed out by a regular poster at Reader Rant. The people who you would think should be defending a woman with a family and a career are almost universal in their questioning of her judgment.

    I think that is because she is not the woman who fits their dreams of what the Modern American Woman should be and/or act like: Right-winger, strongly pro-life, pro-gun, likes her husband, has too many kids, and is from the wrong part of the country.

    What is truly a popcorn quality about it is that this supposedly unqualified light-weight’s nomination has tied a double-granny knot in the skivvies of the Democratic establishment and their left-leaning fellow travelers.

    Most sincerely,

    T. J. Flapsaddle

  26. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 11:52 am

    They really think we are that stupid.

  27. old_curmudgeon  September 2, 2008 at 11:52 am

    Now THAT is the only thing I’ve read that makes sense of Palin being the McCain choice for VP.

    I don’t doubt that the choice was rather abruptly made in the days immediately prior to the announcement but the reasons the campaign and its surrogates put out made little logical sense.

    Even the probably “close to reality” reason of trying to lure the PUMAs over to the dark side didn’t compute UNLESS one considers the possibility, as you state, that the Palin selection was not intended to last for the duration of the campaign. Now, things begin to solidify.

    But the reason had to be such that it would not look like McCain asked her to leave – it has to appear that the decision was hers. And this scenario might even salvage her political future in the grander GOP future plans.

    Otherwise, it would appear that McCain would be a FLIP-FLOPPER!! And they couldn’t have that, now could they?

    But, that’s just this old curmudgeon’s opinion…

  28. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 11:55 am

    Oddsmakers (LINK say now it’s 18% she will withdraw (or be kicked off the ticket).

    Meanwhile where are the talking points the Repubs sent out. Let’s see how many of their personal pundit patrol can keep a straight face when they mouth them:

    > INTERNAL DOCUMENT – NOT TO BE EMAILED BEYOND CURRENT
    > DISTRIBUTION LIST
    >
    > Please see the following points on Gov. Palin’s family.
    >
    > * Governor Palin and her husband Todd have a loving family
    > and their children mean everything to them. When their
    > oldest daughter Bristol came to them with news that she was
    > expecting a child they embraced her and gave her nothing but
    > unconditional love and support.
    >
    > * This is a very personal matter for the family. We should
    > all respect the love they have for the child and the desire
    > all parents would have for their children’s privacy.
    >
    > * The media should respect Bristol’s privacy.
    > That’s always been the tradition and practice when it
    > comes to the children of candidates.
    >
    > * (If pressed) The children of candidates do not choose to
    > run for office and be thrust into the spotlight.

    reference

  29. alltrouble_it  September 2, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    This is just a copy of my post on another article.. and I still feel the same way, even if we didn’t run for office..we’ve all made mistakes.

    Oh come on, are you seriously going to sit here and bash what S.P. did in her college years? Who doesn’t have a past or have done things they regret. I mean if she was a man you would be saying “He was a stud” or “He was very popular with the ladies in college” but instead you sit here and bash her because she’s a woman and you hold her to a higher set of standards than you do a male canidate.
    Did you ever stop to think that perhaps it was her doing those things in college that made her the person she is today? People are going to be very quick to jump on board and bash her and her family, but people need to take a LONG hard look and ask one question, AM I ANY BETTER??? So she has skeletons in her closet, don’t you? Or perhaps you’ve led a perfectly innocent life, never crossed anyone, never wronged anyone, never lied or stretched the truth to suit yourself. Oh please! Get off your high horse and look at it for what it is.
    We have had a presidents in the past getting blow jobs from interns, smoking pot as well as other things that past canidates and elected officials have done. But they were MALE so that makes it better??? Stop being sexist and using everything a mother stands for agasinst her. I don’t exactly agree with all her views but she is raising 5 kids, holding a career, a husband and now she’s running for office.. let’s see you step out from behind your shitty desk job where you bash other people all day long and do what she does for just a week or a day even. Then let’s see how quick you are to jump the gun over bashing her choices!
    Get over the fact that she has a pregnant teenage daughter, Oh dear does that mean she’s a bad parent..hell no. It means she’s real, she’s just like all the other parents in the country that deal with this issue on a daily basis. It makes her more real to some and to you it’s just another reason to rip on her! Leave the kids out of it and fight a fair fight. If you want to attack her then do so, but why on earth attack children that have never crossed you or anyone else for that matter! Grow the hell up and relize that maybe people don’t know how to take her because she hits so close to home with her issues that she’s having in her private life!

    Whatever Happened to Equal Opportunity for Men AND Women???

  30. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 12:08 pm

    I agree with alltrouble. I didn’t bash what Sarah Palin did in her college years. I couldn’t care less. Whether it’s a young Catholic woman who fools around a lot when she’s young and becomes a nun, or a Sarah Palin who is born again, it doesn’t bother me unless they try to force their values on others.

    I didn’t blast her daughter either. In fact, for all I know I’ll be admiring Bristol if and when we learn more about her.

  31. ekaton  September 2, 2008 at 12:35 pm

    I think Bristol is a hottie!
    Thats why I’m voting for John McCain/Sarah Palin

    — 58-year-old Kent Shaw –

  32. bryan mcclellan  September 2, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    Kent, Kent! Come baaaaack.

  33. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    Nope not at all.
    It’s the hypocrisy, AND ONLY the hypocrisy.
    Focus Flappy, stay focused.
    HYPOCRISY. I detect more than a whiff of it.
    The room is redolent with the stuff.

  34. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    Not if they focus on the issue at hand.
    Again I say unto thee, I have no problem with all of the issues
    facing Sarah Palin and her family. There but for the grace of God go I, with my own teenage daughter in tow, and I think about the possibility day and night that she might one day bestow this same news on us.

    But do I run around preaching to others what THEIR CHOICES should be?

    Do I lie about my support for an enormous taxpayer burden?

    Do I sell myself as a paragon of virtue and fastidious adherence to a set of impossible standards?

    Hell no.

    If asked, I usually tell people that my wife and I are the skinnier version of Dan and Roseanne Connor, and I freely admit that my past is probably ten times more checkered than I would care to reveal, and I DO NOT ATTEMPT TO tell others how they should lead their lives or tell them the choices that they should make.

    Focus on the issue. The issue is the hypocrisy of the Republican Party when it’s their ox being gored.

  35. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    Not if they focus on the issue at hand.
    Again I say unto thee, I have no problem with all of the issues
    facing Sarah Palin and her family. There but for the grace of God go I, with my own teenage daughter in tow, and I think about the possibility day and night that she might one day bestow this same news on us.

    But do I run around preaching to others what THEIR CHOICES should be?

    Do I lie about my support for an enormous taxpayer burden?

    Do I sell myself as a paragon of virtue and fastidious adherence to a set of impossible standards?

    Hell no.

    If asked, I usually tell people that my wife and I are the skinnier version of Dan and Roseanne Connor, and I freely admit that my past is probably ten times more checkered than I would care to reveal, and I DO NOT ATTEMPT TO tell others how they should lead their lives or tell them the choices that they should make.

    Focus on the issue. The issue is the hypocrisy of the Republican Party when it’s their ox being gored.

  36. Hal Brown  September 2, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    The new Rev. Wright… may well be Ed Kalnins, the senior pastor of Wasilla Assembly of God since 1999. This was the home town church Palin used to attend regularly.

    This has nothing to do with Palin’s daughter but as a public service I offer this as a “must read” article:
    Palin’s Church May Have Shaped Controversial Worldview
    .

    Her pastor’s fringe right wing fundamentalist beliefs, inclduing in the end of days, won’t be addressed in official Obama ads, but that won’t Move-On or other groups from playing the turn-around is fair play game.

  37. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    Well…let’s just try it out for size shall we?
    How does THIS SOUND to all your Republican friends?
    Try it out on them and ask them what their reaction is.
    Then remember why this is an issue.

    > INTERNAL DOCUMENT – NOT TO BE EMAILED BEYOND CURRENT
    > DISTRIBUTION LIST
    >
    > Please see the following points on Barack Obama’s family.
    >
    > * Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have a loving family
    > and their children mean everything to them. When their
    > oldest daughter Malia Ann came to them with news that she was
    > expecting a child they embraced her and gave her nothing but
    > unconditional love and support.
    >
    > * This is a very personal matter for the family. We should
    > all respect the love they have for the child and the desire
    > all parents would have for their children’s privacy.
    >
    > * The media should respect Malia Ann’s privacy.
    > That’s always been the tradition and practice when it
    > comes to the children of candidates.
    >
    > * (If pressed) The children of candidates do not choose to
    > run for office and be thrust into the spotlight.

  38. Rob Kezelis  September 2, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    That’s just like you, Hal. Apply rational thinking and logic to an emotional issue. geez. thanks.

  39. ekaton  September 3, 2008 at 8:55 am

    Sorry, man, guess I sorta lost it there for a minute. (Grin)

    — Kent Shaw

  40. Siannan  September 3, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    Donna Brazile has proven to be a horse’s ass.

  41. scrugun  September 1, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    I just seen this on our local news.
    She was defended by Obama, not a peep at all from Mccain, maybe bait an switch like Phil mentioned will happen here.

  42. issodhos  September 1, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    And if it were Biden’s daughter, would a responsible father withdraw his vice presidential candidacy, or does it only apply to female candidates?
    Yours,
    Issodhos

  43. Hal Brown  September 1, 2008 at 8:22 pm

    I would hope Biden, and even Obama, would withdraw. I thought that when John Edwards found out his wife had terminal cancer, he too should have withdrawn.

    There’s always another candidate who can “save the nation” from the other party.

  44. adamrussell  September 1, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    Its a non-issue. Dont be too quick to grab at anything you might be able to use. This is not a national issue except to a few misguided religious fanatics. Thats not us.

  45. CheckerboardStrangler  September 1, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    But it’s not Biden’s daughter, it’s not Michelle and Barack’s daughter, and we ALL KNOW what the headlines would read if it was.
    Something like THIS:
    http://deepfreezevideo.com/MuslimMandingoSexManiac.jpg

    The crucifixion would be a lock and it would be defended by
    the Limbaughs, the Coulters, the Hannitys, and of course James Dobson, that nice smarmy guy who just wants us all to “focus on the family”…his favorite family of course.

    So, since it is a daughter of the ANNOINTED SAINTED HOLY Republicans, what say we treat this brewing heap of juicy scandal the same way that they’ve been treating the Obamas so far?

    Not fair?
    Tell that to the folks who haven’t let up in almost a year.
    Tell it to Rove, and also let him know that the more they try to cover up and lie, the worse it’s going to get.

    And it’s already going to be pretty bad.
    Hypocrisy sucks.

  46. issodhos  September 1, 2008 at 9:15 pm

    My point, checkerboardstr, is not that DEMs and REPUBs wallow in the same mudhole of their own making, but that a different set of standards are being applied to Palin because she is a female. I know of know call from anyone, ever, that a male candidate should withdraw from a candidacy or have his qualifications as a parent questioned. Can you?
    Yours,
    Issodhos

  47. Hal Brown  September 1, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    The question I am raising is whether or not she’s being a responsible parent. I am trying to be nonpartisan, not always easy for me. I am, after all, a psychotherapist and as such thinking about the mental health of the entire family.

  48. sherry  September 2, 2008 at 2:58 pm

    O Hal, I guess you think all women she should mind hearth and home?
    I have a feeling if this was Michelle Obama you would find a way to deal with this.
    Again, never mind the kid situation which frankly is none of our business, she is not qualified.
    Why can’t we speak about that?

  49. issodhos  September 1, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    My impression is that you are using a different set of standards with Palin because she is female, and there was ample time for you to call on Edwards to withdraw. I do not recall you making such a suggestion.
    Yours,
    Issodhos

  50. adamrussell  September 1, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    We are not republicans. If we become dirty like republicans, if we stoop to this kind of dirty politics then we have lost already. Dont do it.

  51. popstick22  September 1, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    The author is wrong about the age of consent. If the father is NOT in a position of authority and is more than three years older then sex with a 16 or 17 year old IS legal. Here is the relevant Alaska Statute:

    Sec. 11.41.440. SEXUAL ABUSE OF A MINOR IN THE FOURTH DEGREE.
    (a) An offender commits the crime of sexual abuse of a minor in the fourth degree if

    (1) being under 16 years of age, the offender engages in sexual penetration or sexual contact with a person who is under 13 years of age and at least three years younger than the offender; or
    (2) being 18 years of age or older, the offender engages in sexual contact with a person who is 16 or 17 years of age and at least three years younger than the offender, and the offender occupies a position of authority in relation to the victim.

  52. Hal Brown  September 1, 2008 at 9:48 pm

    Thanks, I clarified what I wrote.

  53. ekaton  September 1, 2008 at 9:08 pm

    Ya just gotta ask yourself, “What would Karl Rove do?”

    Abstinence only sex education. How’s that workin’ out for ya, Mrs. Palin? Family values, baby! Family values!

    Kent Shaw

  54. gazelle1929  September 1, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    I cannot help but wonder, what with all the “first stones” being cast, if this site is a gathering place for those who were virgins until marriage.

    I cannot imagine that the McCain camp would not have asked if there were any skeletons in her closet, and I assume that Governor Palin said, “I’ve got something to say that might cause you pain.” With apologies to the Beatles. If she did not mention it then she should be dropped from the ticket. If they didn’t ask her then they deserve everything that happens.

    But seriously, folks, what is the big deal? Things like this happen every day, though not usually in the highest reaches of a major political party. It is a tragedy for the families involved, since these two children are going to have a tough time of it. But why should we act as if it were the end of civilization? It is not our place to ask such questions as, “Is she being a responsible parent?” Only she and her husband and the parents of the young man can decide what is best for these two kids. Only they can decide what is responsible parenthood.

    Though I almost didn’t say this, I will conclude by saying that, after eight years of Dick Cheney, would not the world be better off with a vice president who did what vice presidents usually do: nothing?

  55. CheckerboardStrangler  September 2, 2008 at 12:30 am

    “But seriously, folks, what is the big deal?”

    -The big deal is the damnable double standard being applied.
    Most of you know that I normally don’t engage in partisanship but this has me flying off my nut.
    The idea that for over a year we have been subjected to the public horsewhipping of a man who had the gall to announce his candidacy for the presidency while being black, while being secretly Muslim, while being a best friend to a firebomb throwing radical preacher, while being a secret black panther agitator who gives his wife a fist bump during the primaries, who doesn’t meet the religous and moral purity required to lead this nation because some fatass religious fundie icon says so…..blah blah blah blah blah quack quack quack, etc.

    And all of it coming from a political party that once held my respect. I voted for Ronnie Ray Gun and tried to close my ears during Iran-Contra but it finally sunk in, the inmates had taken over the asylum, the neocons had taken hold.

    And then came the self appointed religious right, who have spent the better part of a quarter century pointing their fat little fingers at everyone and tossing entire families onto the coals for the least little transgression.
    Suddenly not only is homosexuality a sin, but now it’s a CHOICE.
    Suddenly we’re supposed to hang our head in shame if we’ve ever practiced premarital sex with a woman or allowed our children to attend sex education classes in school.
    Suddenly we’re evil because we don’t want bible beaters proselytizing our kids in public schools and ridiculing them openly when they don’t want to participate.
    Suddenly even abortion in cases where of rape or danger to the life of the mother is grounds for the death penalty.
    Suddenly we’re Satan personified if we advocate contraception for teenagers instead of “abstinence only education”, despite the CLEAR PROOF it DOES NOT WORK!!!
    Suddenly we’re supposed to sit and spin while being preached to that “America was founded as a Christian nation” and allow that to be used as the basis for the theocracy the fundies are dreaming of, and boy will we be sorry when they finally get the power to punish the WICKED!!!

    Dammit all to hell if we aren’t witnessing the beatification of a person who has all the same faults as many of us, but she gets a free pass by these same pious asshats, and any who dare to question anything about her shall be deemed radioactive.

    My rosy red butt. It’s flat out hypocrisy.
    And that is the BIG HAIRY DEAL.

  56. keith  September 2, 2008 at 8:31 am

    Gazelle1929 wrote:

    I cannot help but wonder, what with all the “first stones” being cast, if this site is a gathering place for those who were virgins until marriage.

    That’s not the issue! It’s the hypocricy of it all!

    It’s the “holier than thou” evangelicals who would have the REST of us succumb to their idea of governmental nirvana (a rigid theocracy) all the while while they themselves largely exempt themselves from it.

    Every single so called “fundamentalist” Christian I have ever known and who claims that the Bible is literal truth is also hypocritically selective about which Bible passages are literal and which are not.

    A rule of thumb seems to be that if the Bible quote condemns someone else’s sins, then it’s a literal rule.

    However, if it condemns something they, themselves are doing (or it furthers their “holy” cause) then there’s always some wiggle room.

  57. ekaton  September 2, 2008 at 1:21 am

    A-freaking-MEN!

    — Kent Shaw

  58. JerZGirl  September 2, 2008 at 9:58 am

    His point WAS the hypocrisy of it all. By the time you read to the end of his post, he draws focus on just that. Did you read the entire post or just that first paragraph?

    ————————————————–
    “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” -Mark Twain

  59. Malibu  September 2, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Ms issodhos. In my family, the wife is nurturer of the children and the family in general. It is not a sexist position but a position desired by my wife. Are we so backward in this family values bit? Had Governor Palin had one or two children and they were being nurtured by her husband, I would feel differently.

    It is her emphasis on social values that need attention. I do not fault her for a pregnant unmarried daughter but I would prefer she stayed off the socials issues for the rest of us.

  60. Hal Brown  September 3, 2008 at 7:51 am

    I rest my case –

    at least for the present – about Bristol and Levi being subjected to media attention. Now we know that the National Enquirer was about to break the Bristol pregnancy story on their front page. Members of the Enquirer’s Edward’s investigation team have gone to Alaska to pursue more leads about Palin.

    The non-tabloid press and MSM hates to be scooped by the blogs, let alone by the supermarket tabloids. Between the three venues, we can anticipate that if there is anything else embarrassing to be made public about this family, it will be.

    My focus here has been on why Palin’s continuing in the race is harmful for her family. We are now learning that despite the Republican spin she has a record of not putting family first. She took the flight when her water broke, went back to work only days after having the baby, and since hasn’t spent as much time with the baby as many women would expect her to.

    More is coming out about why she isn’t qualified to be vice president and possibly president.

    Note the Dear Friends letter in the Daily Kos and then read how the New York Times is reporting on FACT about her tenure as mayor in “Palin’s Start in Alaska: Not Politics as Usual “.

  61. Hal Brown  September 3, 2008 at 8:10 am

    Read Stacey Garfinkle’s parenting take on this in the Washington Post HERE.

    Yes, I did put a comment with a link to CHB there… shameless promotion for this website…

  62. pollchecker  September 3, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Now it makes sense…aka coverup

    Hal, last week, when Sarah Palin and family debuted on the political scene, I noticed this young girl standing in the background holding an infant.

    Not knowing much about Palin’s family, I assumed she was a member of the family (or possibly nanny). But it appeared as she was staying out of limelight deliberately and since she was holding the baby it made sense. Still it seemed wierd that the girl kept the baby in a very specific position that just didn’t seem natural. Anyways, there was something about the entire scene that just didn’t look right and again I assumed it was just the short notice thing. That will teach me for assuming.

    Now I get it. That was the 5 month pregnant daughter holding the baby trying to coverup what would be a fairly obvious pregnant belly by this point in time. So that tells me they weren’t sure how to handle the pregnancy issue right from the get go and my guess is that if the press hadn’t figured it out they would have continued to keep her out of sight as much as possible in an attempt to keep it covered up as long as they could.

  63. Hal Brown  September 3, 2008 at 11:19 am

    I read somewhere that the Daily Kos piece that seems to have started the rumor about Sarah’s baby really being Bristol’s was put on by a first time poster. It was noted that this smacked of the Karl Rove straw man approach, as when he bugged his own office and blamed it on the Democrats. Could it be that the Kos piece was posted by Republicans to give them a chance to redirect criticism of Sarah’s parenting and failed abstinence only teaching in her own family?

    Deflection is a tactic. It often works. In fact, to some extent it is working now. The Republicans, and many MSM pundits, are lambasting the bogshere for rumor mongering.

    We can’t prove it was. But none of the MSM is evening mentioning that it COULD have been.

  64. pollchecker  September 3, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Obviously deflection is a tactic being used incessantly by McCain’s campaign. It’s basically all they have. They have to deflect the public’s attention away from the truth in order to have a snowball’s chance in hell of surviving politically.

    I just thought it was interesting that they were obviously covering up her pregnancy right from the beginning.

    Perhaps, McCain’s quick decision about his pick proved unprepared for the pre-natal issue so they just chose to hide it and let the press make it an issue.

    You are correct that it very could well have been a political manuever. Did you see this?

    McCain Hires GOP Operative Who Helped Smear Him in South Carolina in 2000

    Now with this guy’s known dirty tactics on board anything and everything is fair game. Look for every dirty trick in the book. Sure does give the impression that someone will do anything, say anything to seize the presidency.

    So I guess it will be interesting to see if the American public will stand by and vote for someone like that who is so transparent. You said they thought we were stupid. This might be the real test of it.

  65. Hal Brown  September 3, 2008 at 11:55 am

    Home schooling Levi?

    Sherry Johnston (Livi’ mother) said she was worried about her son dealing with all the attention. She said it was difficult enough for teenagers to deal with any pregnancy, having the entire nation watching made it worse.

    Levi Johnston, a high school hockey player for Wasilla High School, is not listed on the team roster for 2008-2009, and his mother wouldn’t say if he graduated. She said simply he’s no longer a student and any further information would have to come from him.

    Levi’s Mom, “this is just a bonus”

    If it’s true he dropped out of high school, perhaps Sarah can squeeze in home schooling him for his GED into her busy schedule.

  66. pollchecker  September 3, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    Oh, the irony of it all….

    Palin Slashed Funding for Teen Moms

    Palin Laughs As Opponent Is Called “Bitch,” “Cancer,” Mocked For Her Weight (AUDIO)

    They just keep coming. You couldn’t make this stuff up if you tried.

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