There’s plenty to complain about Sarah Palin and her views on politics and campaigning. Yesterday I mentioned her insulting views about community organizing. The blogger Brendan Skwire relates a couple of terrific and hilarious anecdotes about calling McCain campaign headquarters to inquire about Palin’s views on community organizers such as the founding fathers and contemporary American volunteers. This criticism is right on.
But another kind of criticism is circulating, and it is totally wrongheaded: that’s the one that says she’s the mother of five, including a child with special needs, so she shouldn’t be running for office. She should be tending her flock. Sally Quinn was mouthing that criticism this morning on CNN: since women often end up with more parenting tasks than men, Palin should be ready to do so. This line of argument is offensive to women, and it is ridden with terrible logic. It may be so that women find themselves taking on more than their share. But this does not mean that they should continue to do so. I would have thought that by now no self-respecting political commentator — and especially no woman — would trot out an argument like that.
Let’s stick to the real issues. There are plenty of them.