Give Sarah Palin a break

Sara Petersen

Fight fire with fire. I’m not overly fond of clichés, but fighting fire with fire is what John McCain is now doing.

In case you haven’t noticed, Sen. Barack Obama doesn’t fit the profile of men who’ve run for president lately. First of all, Obama is a black man, and black men, for some reason, haven’t turned up on the presidential ballot often in the past 200 years.

Secondly, Obama’s campaign reeks of the word “change.” It’s splashed across campaign ads, and his speeches are littered with the word.

If Obama receives an immense amount of feedback from his ideas for change, McCain may want to duplicate that. McCain needed to find a running mate who would cause a complete state of political chaos and add zest to his campaign. He found a young woman who would appeal to the younger generation and to Hillary supporters.

Not only is Sarah Palin a young woman, but she’s also the second woman in history to be a vice presidential candidate. Has McCain started to bring change to this presidential race? I believe the answer is yes.

In retrospect, McCain did not appeal to the younger generation. They are already sold on Obama. The Hillary supporters aren’t exactly in love with Palin either, mainly because of her anti-abortion stance and the fact that McCain chose her primarily because she’s a woman. Palin is attacked with other issues – she has a pregnant daughter, she has a young child with Down syndrome, she’s young, and she has been the governor of Alaska, a state with a very low population, for not even two years.

All of these problems with Palin have been talked to death already in the last week, but does anyone know what Palin did while in office? She invested $5 billion in state savings, instituted a senior benefits program for low-income Alaskan senior citizens and created Alaska’s Petroleum Systems Integrity Office to oversee and provide maintenance of oil and gas equipment, along with many other things.

Yes, Palin supports offshore drilling, but she’s a friend of the environment, because many people from Alaska are nature freaks. Yes, Palin is for abstinence-only sex education. Yes, Palin is anti-abortion, but Roe v. Wade and sex education are not the largest issues the country faces. Regarding her inexperience, the speaker of the house does more than the vice president. The only thing I’ve heard about Cheney is he mistook a hunting partner as a target and he’s a little too friendly with large companies. I may be biased, but Palin was a journalist, and I can’t find anything wrong with that.

Scandals arise, such as her pregnant daughter. The family lives in Alaska, a state with a little more than 670,000 people. What else is there to do besides drink beer and have sex? Also please remember, our beloved John F. Kennedy had a number of affairs while he was in office and that didn’t stop him from being a great president.

While everybody is picking at Palin, I haven’t seen an enormous amount of stories condemning Sen. Joe Biden, who received five deferments during Vietnam because he stayed in school and was then disqualified from service because he had asthma as a teenager.

Even though it may sound like I’m advocating Sarah Palin, I’m not. She is incredibly inexperienced, but McCain needed a running mate to cause a stir, and that is exactly what Palin is doing.

Sara Petersen is a junior public relations major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].