Every now and then, I see a simple comparison or insight that I find really striking: George Carlin’s football/baseball comparison, for example. So it is with the question of how Sarah Palin would be viewed if she were black. It’s an easy question to ask, but I’d never considered just how deep it goes:
If Sarah Palin were black, her daughter’s out of wedlock, “baby daddy drama” would have been presented as an example of both pathological behavior and a dysfunctional family that is symbolic of the social problems in that community. If Sarah Palin were black, never would the poor decision making by the Palin family be marked off as challenges overcome, or deeds to be valorized.
If Sarah Palin were black, her neo-secessionist husband would have been the death knell for her political career, because as we all know you can’t trust “those people.”
If Sarah Palin were black, her lack of intellectual curiosity, willful and cultivated ignorance, and lack of grace both written and spoken, would not be taken as “folksy.” Instead, Palin would be viewed as unqualified for any public office.
And that’s before we even get into the targets on the map and the shooting of Gabby Giffords.