It’s About Judgment, Stupid
The post about Sarah Palin’s pre-natal care was taken down because of the vile comments made by a pletehora of conservatives who decided to invade the site and show us just how decent and value-driven some of them are. Nothing like epithet-hurling if you want to make your point, or if you have strong objections to what someone says or does. Furthermore, I in no way mean to suggest that her child’s Down Syndrome was in any way related to decisions she made. In fact I never mentioned Down Syndrome in the post. However, I apologize that my post was not more clear on that point. That is my fault, and I’ll take responsibility for not being more clear on that point. That being said…
Jaru summed it up on a previous thread.
Conservative hate was re-routed via conservative blogs!
Anyway, I love how everyone keeps trying to accuse Alan of accusing Princess Mooseburger of birthing a mentally retarded child on purpose.
He asked a judgement question about a 7 month pregnant woman who just had her water break GET ON A 12 HOUR FLIGHT TO GIVE BIRTH after giving a 30 MINUTE SPEECH instead of doing the SENSIBLE THING AND STAYING PUT WITH A DOCTOR.
The idea that you can’t question Sarah Palin’s judgment because she has a Down Syndrome baby is right up there with the outrage some feel the minute you question a man who was held in a prison camp for five years. Yet, the same outraged protectors of our values have no trouble questioning Obama’s judgment: a nodding acquaintance with someone in his neighborhood, his choice of a church, his very faith, and then they blamed that on the Clintons). The question was even raised as to whether he is hiding the truth of his birth certificate. In fact, hotair.com, the the site most outraged about what I posted, was one of the prime venues of the birth certificate debate, among others concerning Obama’s “judgment”. And let’s not forget the attacks on Michelle Obama and the insinuations that she doesn’t really love her country.
For the record, I think the McCain choice of Palin was caculatingly smart, in that it guarantees that a glass ceiling be broken after the coming election. I’m sure Sarah Palin is a fine person who is just very wrong on the issues and, like all of us, hasn’t always shown perfect judgment. But don’t tell me that John McCain chose the best person for the job, or that he didn’t make this choice reactively, because Hillary Clinton is not on the Democratic ticket.
For the record, here is the link to Rogers Cadenhead’s post on the issue of judgment.
Maybe Palin’s actions can be written off as Alaskan grit, since she’s a macho hunting governor who jogs in freezing temperatures and dines on moose burgers. But as a parent myself, I think the Palins were extremely fortunate that their reckless stupidity did not end in tragedy. As middle-aged parents who already had four kids, the Palins had to be completely familiar with all the things that can go wrong in a pregnancy. One commenter on the Washington Times laid out the enormous risk she was taking:
Airlines are unequipped to handle most emergencies at 30,000 feet, particularly the kind Palin put her unborn child at markedly increased risk for. These emergencies include birthing a premature infant or uncontrolled maternal bleeding. This was her FIFTH pregnancy and delivery can happen rapidly and unexpectedly. The baby or Palin could easily have died.
The Anchorage Daily News gave the chronology of events the day Palin was in Dallas giving a speech where she began contractions, and water broke. It quotes Dr. Laurie Gregg, a Sacramnto obstetrician:
[Dr. Laurie Gregg] who is active in the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said when a pregnant woman’s water breaks, she should go right to the hospital because of the risk of infection. That’s true even if the amniotic fluid simply leaks out…”To us, leaking and broken, we are talking the same thing. We are talking doctor-speak,” Gregg said.
Down Syndrome is another matter, and can sometimes be related to a mother’s age. This is a risk that older parents take, and one the Palins took consciously, and not irresponsibly.
Because of prenatal testing, most families now know beforehand, said Judy Waldron, president of the Alaska chapter of the National Down Syndrome Congress, a support and education group that delivered a parent packet to the Palins in the hospital.
“They anticipate it and they kind of relish the challenge of having a child with special needs,” said Waldron, an Anchorage teacher whose 19-year-old daughter, Lyn, has Down syndrome.
If we are going to evaluate candidates based on life decisions: what churches they attend, what religions they practice, who their preachers are, who their friends are, all of which fall under the rubrick of “judgment”, then all of this is fair game. That argument cuts many ways so, to quote my least favorite president, “Bring it on.”