“Bible dipping” helped memoirist Augustin Burroughs answer some of life’s difficult questions. Apparently, Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin read special significance into the printed matter on her Starbucks cup.
In a speech to conservative Californians yesterday, Gov. Palin declared it "providential" that her Starbucks mocha cup carried a special message from former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. (Mis)quoting her source, Palin said, "There’s a place in Hell reserved for women who don’t support other women." And after making that inflammatory statement, she laid down a gauntlet for the media. "[L]et’s see what a comment like I just made, how that is turned into whatever it’ll be turned into tomorrow with the newspapers." (video here)
To her credit, Palin did finally reveal one of her daily reads. But God help me, I hope I’m missing her point. Is she really suggesting that women who don’t support the McCain-Palin ticket should plan to spend eternity in hell? And is she twisting the former Secretary of State’s statement as proof?
Ignore, if you can, the dog-whistling. Put aside for now the fears Albright expressed about Palin’s candidacy, and the fact that Albright’s quotation refers to helping other women, not supporting them. When the smoke clears, Palin’s abhorrent record on women’s issues (right to privacy, equal pay, and victim protection, among others) speaks for itself.
I think it’s pretty obvious how newspapers should treat this affront to women. Fight fire with fire, I say. Madame Secretary, I hope you’ll come to the microphone today and help us out.
Edited to add Ms. Albright’s response: Though I am flattered that Governor Palin has chosen to cite me as a source of wisdom, what I said had nothing to do with politics. This is yet another example of McCain and Palin distorting the truth, and all the more reason to remember that this campaign is not about gender, it is about which candidate has an agenda that will improve the lives of all Americans, including women. The truth is, if you care about the status of women in our society and in our troubled economy, the best choice by far is Obama-Biden.