A Tale of Two Women …

I’m not talking about Venus and Serena – although, come to think of it, that would be fun as they prepare to meet in the Wimbledon Women’s Final.

But no – I’m talking about Michelle and Sarah … two women who couldn’t possibly be more different.

Unless you’ve been off hiking the Appalachian Trail, you’re well aware of Sarah’s big announcement. She called a hasty news conference to let us all know, yesterday, in a rambling and uninformative speech, that she is stepping down as Alaska’s chief executive.

There’s lots of speculation on line as to why she’s doing it. It certainly would free up her time to prepare for a presidential bid in 2012. (And by prepare, I mean something like go to college, look at some maps, or read some books — but I don’t think that’s what she’s likely to be thinking.)

There’s also speculation that she’s just quitting … and also about new and bigger scandals that are about to break — and I must admit that I like that idea. Anything that would actually put this divisive individual’s ambitions onto the trash heap of history would be most welcome.  Here’s a great quote from Shannyn Moore, whose article is linked just above:

I have said Sarah Palin’s political ambition combined with her intellect is like putting a jet engine on a golf cart; lots of horse power and no steering capabilities. Today she proved it.

Lots of commentary out there – from a cavalcade of pundits on Politico – to Nate Silver on FiveThirtyEight.  And then of course there’s the full text of her speech, for anyone with the time/energy/patience and diagnostic chops to wade through it.  (If you do read it … or watch these Top Ten Videos of the Palin Experience … just keep thinking about this person being in a position to represent YOU on the world stage.)

I also must admit that, depending on my mood, I can feel it either elated or empathetic about the dilemma and divisiveness that she brings to the GOP. If she really is going to be getting more active on the national stage, then the bitter fragmentation, polarization, and right-wing radicalization of the Republican Party will continue — and they will be increasingly marginalized. That’s overall good for the Democrats — but it also means that the flames of shrill and narrow minded bigotry will continue to receive lots of oxygen in this country. Sad.

Anyway, in contrast to this loudmouthed, hypocritical, narcissistic and shallow woman, we have our very own first lady, Michelle Obama. Far more qualified to be President than the soon to be former governor, Michelle prefers to put her values into action quietly and without fanfare. I love what she is doing with the bully pulpit she has been given, and follow her activities with much more interest than I ever have ANY first lady’s. Her outreach to the DC community is so admirable — and so antithetical to anything that would ever even occur to Ms. God Family and Country Palin.

It’ll be interesting to see what they media ferrets out about Sarah in the coming days, weeks, months. Like Michael Jackson, she reflects things about our culture that, in so many ways, I would rather not see or admit to. With Michael I feel like it was our narrow view of what is physically acceptable and beautiful (i.e., whiteness). With Sarah it is our bigotry and our mistrust of intelligence/intellectualism. We had the same thing with Dubya, and look where it got us?! Can we at least learn from recent experience?

I sure hope so!

Meanwhile, in happier news today, we’ve got Wimbledon. We’ve also got the Breakers playing Sky-Blue FC and looking for another win.  Match time is 4PM ET.

The sun is out this morning in New Hampshire, and it’s looking good for a pretty darn dry Fourth of July.

Hey, that rhymes! Here’s to fireworks and happy times!

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