Monday, January 12, 2009

Obama, Palin, and Family

Geoffrey Dunn of the Huffington Post is calling Sarah Palin a liar. He is wrong. Here's why.

Last Spring, Michele Obama said that she had not been proud of her country until it voted for her husband. Many people pounced on this. In response, Barack said that his wife and family were off limits. The press accepted this restriction.

Within days of Palin's nomination as McCain's running mate, bloggers started a rumor that her youngest child was not hers, that Trig was her grandchild and she passed it off as her own. This got picked up by such sources as Andrew Sullivan who writes for the Atlantic. Sarah had to announce that her daughter could not have delivered a child a few months ago because she was six months pregnant at the time.

In a recent interview, Palin complained that she expected the families are off-limits rule to apply to her as well as Obama.

This is where Geoffry Dunn jumps in and calls Palin a liar.
While Obama did say that he found attacks on his wife "unacceptable," he also very bodly and emphatically stated that Palin's family was also off limits when asked a question about Bristol Palin's pregnancy
[...] He wasn't protecting simply his own family with that assertion, he was also protecting Palin's. And Palin lacks the basic grace, integrity and human decency to acknowledge Obama's gesture. And then she twists the truth to make Obama seem selfish and the media unfair.

While it is true that Obama said that Palin's family should be off-limits, he said this months after he had declared his own family off-limits and days after his supporters had started slandering Palin. Dunn has reordered events to suit his own assertion that Palin
will say anything, lie about anything, if it is to her own benefit to do so.
It is also true that many conservatives continued to attack Michelle right up to the election. They were quite open in their reasoning that statements that Michelle made on the record while campaigning were fair game, regardless of Barack's wishes. The attacks on Palin and her children were very different. The only thing comparable would be to demand that Barack submit to genetic testing to prove that the girls are actually his daughters. Even if someone made such a suggestion (and I am not), the press would ignore it like they did the rumor about Obama's birth certificate.

Palin has every right to complain about how she and her family were treated. Dunn should accept that he and his confederates were over-the-top in their persecution of Palin.

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