Thursday, September 4, 2008

Sarah Palin Is A Danger To My Kids -- And Maybe Yours Too

Tonight I can't sleep because I'm worried about a woman who is a danger to my children's future. So much so that I'm willing to temporarily shift the focus of my blog tonight -- usually a light-hearted look at raising children as a later-in-life mom -- and write, at least for this entry, about why you, if you're a mom, ought to be having a sleepless night too.

The dangerous woman I'm referring to is Republican V.P. nominee Sarah Palin. I saw her speak on TV tonight from the Republican Convention like millions of Americans, and what's keeping me up is what she DIDN'T say. She didn't say what she really stands for because it might scare off a lot of voters she's trying to attract. She didn't mention certain positions she holds that, if she's allowed to act on, could alter the future -- my kids' and your kids -- for the worse. So you and I have to look elsewhere, outside her big speech, to find out what they are.

I've looked, and I've found out. Here's why she's got me so frightened for my kids.

1.SARAH PALIN BELIEVES IN BANNING BOOKS.
According to Time Magazine, as mayor of her small town in Alaska, Sarah Palin sought to have books banned from the local library and threatened to fire the librarian who objected.

I want my kids to grow up in an America that believes in expanding people's minds, a place where the government doesn't legislate freedom of thought by banning books.

I know Sarah Palin is a devoutly religious woman, and I fear it's her faith that leads her to think banning books is a good, or even acceptable, idea. But, to paraphrase a line from the classic play and movie INHERIT THE WIND, "The Bible is a good book -- but it's not the ONLY book." For the sake of my kids, as well as yours, I'd like to keep it that way.

2.SARAH PALIN SUPPORTS ABSTINENCE-ONLY SEX EDUCATION.

She AND John McCain, like George W. Bush, believe students in public schools ought to be told to abstain from sex, but should NOT be told about condoms or birth control.

This from a woman whose own daughter is pregnant at seventeen. Don't you think Bristol Palin might've benefited from a real sex education class, not a muzzled one?

You can bet I'll be telling my kids about condoms and birth control, and I'll do it BEFORE I even suspect they're on the verge of becoming sexually active. But I also think it's vitally important that they and their future classmates get educated about these things in school too, sitting in a classroom with their peers. Sex education is not just about the importance of truly planned parenthood, so our children aren't saddled with the greatest responsibility a person can have before they're mature enough to handle that responsibility. It's about protecting their health and the health of others.

3.SARAH PALIN REFUSES TO SUPPORT A WOMAN'S RIGHT TO ABORT A PREGNANCY, EVEN IN CASES OF RAPE OR INCEST.
Nobody ever likes to have an abortion. But those who support a woman's right to choose know that there are times when it's medically necessary, and also that there are times when it's the right choice for other, equally valid reasons. Those who object on religious grounds don't have to have an abortion. They shouldn't have the right to dictate to those who don't share their view.

When my daughter comes of age, I want her to have the right to make reproductive decisions without government interference. But the very next administration is going to see the retirement of perhaps as many as three Supreme Court justices, and even a change of one vote on the court could mean abortion is no longer, in the words of Bill Clinton, "safe, legal, and rare."

4.SARAH PALIN BELIEVES HUMAN ACTIVITY IS NOT IN ANY WAY TO BLAME FOR CLIMATE CHANGE.
Incredible as it may seem, there are some yahoos out there -- and make no mistake, Sarah Palin is one such yahoo -- who still refuse to acknowledge that the world's industrial activity and the resulting pollution have nothing to do with the undeniable, scientifically verified fact that the world is getting hotter.

I want my kids to be able to breathe clean air, drink clean water, and eat a food supply that isn't irreparably poisoned ... and I don't want them to live in a world that's been destabilized because vast areas where crops used to grow have become desert, cities have been sunk in floods, and disease and hunger are even more rampant than they are now. But if the U.S. government is led by people who won't help the world to take steps to at least hold back the tide of climate change, let alone reverse it, it's going to get a helluva lot worse.

5.SARAH PALIN ADVOCATES THE TEACHING OF CREATIONISM IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS ALONGSIDE EVOLUTION.
There is not a shred of evidence for Creationism. Last time I checked, actual evidence shows men and apes are pretty closely related, and the earth is much older than a literal interpretation of the Bible would suggest. Furthermore, dictating that Creationism -- a religious dogma -- be taught in public schools in contradiction to science violates separation of church and state.

If Sarah Palin wants her kids to learn Creationism, she is free to teach it to them at home or send them to Sunday school. It has no place in the curriculum of tax-supported public schools. I don't want Creationism presented to my kids as the legitimate, other side of an argument about the origins of earth or man. I want my kids to learn actual science.

Sarah Palin didn't bring up any of these things in her speech to the Republican convention. But these are, in fact, her firmly held positions. If they scare you as much as they scare me, then tell every mom you know.

This is the real Sarah Palin. And she's the reason I'm having a sleepless night.

Sarah Palin wants you to see her as "EveryMom." Well, I'm a mom too -- and she's my nightmare.

2 comments:

Alex said...

And it gets so much worse:

Palin's preacher said a few weeks ago (with Palin in church) that terrorist attacks on Israel are God's judgment against Jews for not accepting Jesus... and that God would not allow anyone who voted for John Kerry in 2004 to enter Heaven.

And Sarah Palin, who promised parents of Special Needs kids would have a friend in the White House if she's elected, vetoed funding for Special Needs education while governor of Alaska.

Anonymous said...

I had the same experience, and Michael couldn't get why I was REALLY terrified and left the room during her speech...amazing. Wish I'd called you, Hol. xo jode