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So last night, I was grilling up some breaded placenta for dinner (Don’t you hate how you ALWAYS end up cooking the same things every single week? I’ve got to start getting more creative), and I started thinking about Governor Sarah Palin.

You know the Republican candidate for vice president. Turns out her 17 year-old daughter is sort of knocked up. And not in a funny, Judd Apatow kind of way. But in a shotgun-wedding-because-holy-crap-my-mother-is- running-for-Vice-President kind of way.

Look, I definitely don’t dig the very conservative Sarah Palin. She’s anti-choice, opposes stem cell research, favors oil and gas interests over protecting the environment, believes in teaching creationism in schools, supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife refuge… Ok, I can’t keep going. I’m having a panic attack. She doesn’t even want to protect polar bears for gosh sakes.

I have no problem with a woman who can bag a caribou while nursing a baby – just overall, she’s simply not my kind of gal.

That said, I just don’t think her teenager’s pregnancy has anything to do with Palin’s ability or inability to be vice president. Yes, it’s a juicy story. But to me, it’s just not relevant to her abilities to govern.  It’s a personal crisis in their family.

And some are also questioning whether Palin should even be running for vice president, given that she has five kids, including an infant with Down’s Syndrome. But I don’t really think that’s for anyone else to decide. Each mother and father must find the right balance for themselves between work and family. I refuse to judge this mother for now setting her sights on the vice presidency.

I know I couldn’t do it. Damn. I almost had a breakdown in the car today when both my kids were crying and whining at full crescendo as we hit loads of traffic. I’m definitely not cut out for the veep spot. But maybe she is.

This is Palin’s choice.

In November, it will my choice. And your choice. And your placenta’s choice.

I know. I’ll stop with the placenta thing. It’s grossing me out too.

Addendum: Check out this very interesting piece, “Sarah Palin’s Parenting Choices Under Fire” from ABC News. And yes, I’m quoted! So c’mon, click on it.

mama bird notes:

For you New York mama birds… my friend Jerielle, an actress, is working like crazy to raise money to fight breast cancer. She wants to encourage everyone to participate in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on September 14th in Central Park or click here to donate to Jerielle Team Broadway Boobies.

Or for you gals who like to belt your heart out, Team Broadway Boobies is also holding a karaoke night to raise money to find a cure on September 9th, 6 – 10 pm, at the Watering Hole in New York City. Don’t be intimidated by all those actresses who probably have awesome voices. This is for a good cause! Only $5 admission. Email jerielle@gmail.com for more info.

47 Responses to in defense of sarah palin

  • calikim says:

    HA!! Totally agree with you. It just shows her family is just as dysfunctional as the rest of ours. Or at least Britney Spears’.

  • Nope, not dysfunctional – I think they are handling it well. And, I live in an upper-middle-class community where already 3 of my friends/acquaintances have a young unmarried daughter who is already a mom. It is so common, it is scary (at least, to those of us with teen girls).

    I’m not Republican. I’m just saying that this is a very common experience right now, and her family is dealing with it as they see fit. It’s not a shotgun wedding if the girl isn’t being forced to marry. I’m sure giving it up for adoption would have been just as politically correct, so I doubt they are forcing her to get married.

    None of our damn business, as you said…

  • Shannon says:

    Totally agree – To each his own. That being said, I can barely make my son’s preschool snack, change my one year old and get the laundry done w/o having some sort of regularly scheduled breakdown. 😉 Hooray for Obama Mamas everywhere!

  • amy says:

    I know what you mean… Even though my political views are polar opposite of palin’s, i do feel for them, and especially their daughter, that this pregnancy has to be a full-fledged media affair (no pun intended).

  • merlotmom says:

    I totally agree- she is not my kinda gal either. Can’t relate on any level BUT I do believe that the choice to become VP or take any other time-demanding job and the right to choose what’s right for your family has nothing to do with her legitimacy as a VP candidate.

  • Gabriella's mom says:

    Oh boy and I got all hip hip hooray excited when you were writing about her overall success as a woman. But to be sure we aren’t falling into the trap of self-hating women or stereo typing what we expect of our mama comrades, lets all have a closer look at the Dem VP pick. How ’bout that Biden? I seem to recall something about a scandal in 1987 and 1988 about Joe plagiarizing and more recently, making stupid remarks about ethnic groups which I dare not repeat here. Check out his profile on Wiki, it’s all there. And maybe the joke is all on us and that is not even Gov Palin but a smart suit on Tina Fey! I know I’m not the only one who thinks she looks like Tina Fey right?! Tina Fey for VP!

  • Jen says:

    I think we all need to sit back and realize what this woman has accomplished. She was mayor over 9,000 people, then Governor over the largest oil producing state in our country, and is raising five children, one with special needs. Her 17 year old daughter had the heart to raise her child when she easily could of hid this to protect her mom’s career. How do you fault someone for loving and protecting unborn life, and living that in her own life?
    And to quote Gov. Palin, she is certainly into protecting our environment ——- she is simply realistic about it, not all fake and dreamy sounding on the platform ——

    “Regimes to protect Stellar Sea Lions must be based on sound science not personal agendas…I will fight in every way possible to make sure that our fishing communities are protected from the personal agendas of federal fishery managers”

    “I believe in protecting Alaska’s environment through fair enforcement of our environmental laws. Having a clean record on environmental regulation is critical to getting ANWR open and maintaining our fisheries mining, timber, and tourism industries.” Sarah Palin

    I do love kelcey, but
    don’t get me started on Biden, Obama and their inability to state where they stand on the important issues.

  • kristen says:

    i don’t want to get into any of the reasons why i think one ticket is better than the other, eveyone has an opinion…

    that said, leave Palin’s daughter or the fact that she has 5 children, doesn’t speak on her ability to be a good VP. it’s not right that the press talks about this girl, her boyfriend or any of their personal choices…this isn’t about them, it’s about the girls’ mom and there’s enough to talk about her, without bringing in her family.

  • sam says:

    i disagree. i think running for the 2nd biggest job in america while having just given birth to a down syndrome infant is both irresponsible to the country and to her family. i don’t care how pc you try to be, there is no way to do both of those jobs well at the same time! i am pro mother & woman but come on!

  • Bitsy says:

    Thank you, Kelcey!! And kudos to Obama for stating that families are off-limits. Why do we have this double standard for women?? If this were a man we would not be hearing these questions about his ability to parent and govern at the same time. I am an independant who thinks that Hillary got unfairly pummeled by the media and now were seeing it with Palin. Makes me furious. Doesn’t matter what your politics are.

  • Cathy says:

    I think it’s wrong to bring Palin’s personal life into this, too. She manages to be governor of Alaska with all those kids and family issues. I know there’s NO WAY I could do it, but if she can, then good for her.

    Why can’t we just focus on the issues anymore? Why does running for president have to be more of a popularity/beauty contest instead how qualified this person is and what they believe in?

  • Michelle says:

    I think Sarah Palin has done everything we tell our daughters they can do. I’m so with you Kelcey, we can choose in November based on the issues, not her personal life.

  • Becky says:

    The only reason I think this story is so interesting is because it’s from a conservative as they come Republican. Of COURSE I don’t have a problem with a single young mom (hello! I am one – well not that young anymore) but I’m also one that believes in CHOICE and that family values don’t come from 1 dad and 1 mom and dinners at 5. So the fact that this happened to the Republicans is just priceless. and I’m sorry for the daughter – as none of this is her fault. I’m also sad they “HAVE” to get married.

  • sarah says:

    sarah palin may be a great mother – i don’t think her daughter being pregnant calls this into question – i do wrestle with the decision she made to go forward with the vp spot and throw her daughter to the media wolves and place her pregnancy in the international spot light. i mean life has got to be tough enough being pregnant at 17 and being thrust into adulthood w/o npr and the bbc debating your situation with the world.

  • Sally says:

    Completely agree, Kelcey. But one thing really bothers me, and it bothered me in real time, even before the world knew that Bristol Palin is pregnant. During the nomination announcement, Bristol was strategically placed standing behind her mom with her baby brother strategically placed over her tummy. I told my husband at the time that it looked bizarre. Now I understand why SP’s handlers did this to hide a growing belly and establish Bristol as maternal. Probably smart but still sort of oily.

  • francine Kasen says:

    Palin’s LOVE OF GUNS seems to have come in handy as far as this predicament is concerned. If those teens were truly intending to get married , what have they been waiting for??!! Face it. There would be NO talk of marriage if she were not thrust into the spotlight this week. Remember, this is a woman who opposes birth control education in schools, stubbornly rejects universally established scientific data, opposes women’s choice, even in instances of rape and incest, and the irony is HUGE that Plain’s message of abstinance did not work for HER family, WHY force that position on an entire nation!!!? She is a token vagina and women everywhere should be insulted. She is profoundly unqualified, and clearly is being set up as a puppet (think “W”) I believe her brain is being surgically replaced by Cheny’s this week, which explains why she has been ‘out of sight’ for the past 4 days. I agree that children should be “off limits” BUT it is the Republican OBSESSION with MY FAMILY that IS up for discussion.

  • Melisa says:

    I am going to have to agree with the poster above, I think she said it best. If what you believe didn’t work for your family, why should you shove that same thing down my families throat?
    I have to think they really did not do a good job of vetting Palin or thought that all this drama would be just what they needed. I personally feel insulted that she was chosen. I am all for breaking that glass ceiling, I just think there were better women to do the job, some without all the family drama to overcome in the spotlight. We know that even though it was said family is out of bounds, the media will not just let this die.

  • toni says:

    I am one that believes one’s personal life reveals his/her true character, and so I think that personal life is very relevant regarding my potential leader.

    Having said that, I am also a mother of teenagers, who regularly make choices that go against what my husband and I have taught and encouraged. This is not a reflection on Ms. Palin’s ability, but rather the poor choices of a teenaged daughter and her boyfriend.

  • Rhea says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with your post. No matter who we like or don’t like, who we vote for or against, let their family life be private. Let’s not overpublitize it.

    And, ewww, placenta stuff grossing me out!

  • Tully's Mama says:

    That’s my girl, Kelc. Way to stir up the readers. I am a working mother with a toddler, another one on the way and will continue to work but I do have a teensy problem with going back to work 3 days post partum after delivering a special needs child? I don’t care if she had to schlep her breast pump to work, that is not putting the needs of a child first.

  • Francesca says:

    I think the way she runs her family is reflective of how she’d run the country – and frankly, it’s clear that things are NOT under control at home. I think a mother has to teach her daughter about being responsible, and if the daughter messed-up, I actually think mom is partly responsible. A VP would pay attention to social policy and sexuality is a big one. What were you like when you were a teen? Did you have unprotected sex or were you paranoid – doubling up on the protection? Did you have confidence and a good sense of self-worth or were you looking for love outside of the home? I say everything about Palin creeps me out and I’m terrified that someone as inexperienced politically and radically fundamentalist would represent us in the world. To me, she seems wholly unqualified personally and professionally. I wish she’d just stay in the beauty pageant circle where we’d all be safe.

  • Erin says:

    it’s sad to not protect those cute and cuddly polar bears, even if they scare the crap out of petunia! and i agree with you, having a pregnant daughter has nothing to do with her ability to help run the country. ….gosh, you’re famous!

  • Karen Bland says:

    Funny, we had the same dinner last night – oh wait, I forgot – the pizza guy didn’t have placenta topping, so we just had the usual. (I’m a real “power mom”, can’t you tell?) I 100% agree with you on EVERYTHING you said regarding Sarah Palin- scary in many ways for me personally, but leave her 17 year old daughter alone – as if she doesn’t have enough to deal with. Dr. Phil was called in to the Today Show today, because the media feels it is their job to help us all understand what she is going through. I think we get it – THE GIRL IS NO DOUBT FREAKED. Finally, as I was reading your blog, my 3 year old walked up to the picture of Sarah Palin and her Caribou husband and said, “is that mommy and daddy”? I quickly said, “no….mommy was never runner up Miss Alaksa….”

  • pamela says:

    It is her personal views that scare me, not her personal life. I have no issues with her family, I have four kids myself. She is anti choice, anti environment, anti gay, and anti just about everything that I believe in..has even attempted to ban books, and there are many other issues that just flat out scare me about her.

  • THANK you. I’m a conservative who isn’t a huge Palin fan, but I am sick and tired of the whole Republicans get what they deserve crap. No one is claiming to be perfect. And besides, she isn’t the one who got knocked up. Her daughter did. What parent can control everything their kids do? We teach them what we believe, and they do what they want with it.

    On the other hand, I feel so badly for that poor girl and that she has to deal with a traumatic situation in this kind of spotlight, and I’m not sure what I think of Palin for putting her through that. Who knows, maybe she’s her mother’s biggest cheerleader, but I have my doubts.

    Congrats on your new level of fame! You go, girl!!

  • jean says:

    Agree, agree, Kelcey. Disagree, disagree, Palin, on your stand on pretty much everything. Palin’s family should NOT be dragged through the mire, though, the way the press so loves to do…and,Go Kelcey!

  • JCK says:

    You have some good points here. Placenta and all! Very clever word play.

    I just got finished watching her speech at the Republican convention and we’re going to have to get cracking with getting Obama in the White House. The Republicans are experts at character assasination. It’s scary.

  • Tommy-Tom says:

    I just watched Sarah Palin’s speech. Whatever else she may or may not be, she’s going to be a formidable candidate. It appears McCain did, indeed, do his homework before selecting her. Though I won’t be voting in her direction, we can’t have enough such women running for office.

  • Lisa Reisman says:

    Who are we to judge? Those that criticize her not for her politics but for her parenting abilities or her commitment to her family are probably the people that couldn’t possibly accomplish what she has accomplished. She faces the same ironies that so many of us women face…to want to be successful career wise, yet have children who didn’t conform to our “vision of perfection for them”, yet be able to proudly present a disabled child to the world and juggle it all. She’s unbelievably impressive and hugely insprirational. And no, she’s not a city slicker from some ivy league school but I’ll bet she connects with more American people than most of the rest of both tickets. And as a fellow executive and mother, all I can say is you go girl. I’m impressed.

  • myhouseof6 says:

    wow, this judgment all coming from a bunch of hypocrite liberal gals. may your children never grow up and do something you have hopefully taught against. i have never been so stoked about a vp.
    how can you defend a party who has a presidential candidate who fought long and hard to get a bill passed which would allow 24 weekers to lay in the holding room at the hospital and die.
    take their last little breaths alone, to save money? to allow freedom of choice?
    im really not an extremist, just think our country could use a little more morals today and a little less mtv.

  • scrappysue says:

    i agree with you kelcey, SP’s not my kinda gal either. in fact to me, she’s the scariest kinda of republican. sure, personal life should be off limits, but hello – this is politics where the opposition try and make their opponents look bad so you can look GOOD. of course her family and choices were going to be fodder. of course this wouldn’t be relevant if SP was a man, but she ain’t so it is what it is.

  • Madge says:

    have you tried deep fried placenta? that’s how we serve it in the south, ya’ll.


    SP terrifies me, but i’m with you on the whole teen daughter thing and her choice to run….

  • kelsey kleiman says:

    I agree with Kelcey, I don’t think people need to be judging her mothering and claiming that she can’t do both well – if only for the double standard.

    But, I don’t believe the media is crossing the line. Bristol is seventeen years old and that is old enough to have a child and get married. The boy is eighteen. Given Palin’s belief that women should not have the right to choose, given that Palen believes in abstinent only sex ed when it has been studied and proven that it doesn’t work – well, the media and the Democrats had better battle her on these issues and use her offspring as an example.

    The bottom line is that teens have sex because they are sexual. I started at 15 and, by 16 I was asking my boyfriend to help me have an orgasm (thank you “Sex, Lies and Videotape”). Of course that boyfriend had no idea what I was talking about so I broke up with him. But, hello world – teens are sexual. 41% of girls under 20 get pregnant. Holy Crap!

    I do wish someone would have educated me better on sex, love, relationships and the muddle of emotions that results from it all. I do wish I hadn’t been so hungry for boy’s attention. Really, the worse thing to do is not talk about sex. It’s a miracle I didn’t get pregnant before I was 20.

    Another thing I cannot fathom is that according to Palin if I’m raped she believes I shouldn’t take a morning after pill (or have an abortion)?

    I just don’t understand why anyone would care if I tried to block implantation after a violent crime (or because a condom broke…which has happened to me twice).

    And even worse than this hypothetical rape being me is if it were my daughter. What sane person could console their child after a rape and tell them that while there was something to be done to prevent impregnation – that no one will help her because that little sperm impregnating her egg is more important than her well being.

    So, its all very interesting…Sarah Palin is a role model for women in that she has achieved a lot and is a successful working mother – yet her beliefs are all about repressing women and taking away their choices.

    In fact, mother of 4 (myhouseof6)…am I reading your post correctly? Did you actually write “how can you defend a party who has a presidential candidate who fought long and hard […] to allow freedom of choice?”

    (and Palin’s view that abstinence is the only choice…makes sense how? At least she believes creationism should be taught along side of evolution. At least, in that regard, she seems to understand that God is a choice.)

    And, myhouseof6, as far as late term abortions – well 1% of abortions are after 20 weeks just as 1% of abortions result from incest…and, with politics its often all about linguistics, wording and protecting future rights. Does Obama really think a baby born alive during an abortion should be killed? Does Sarah Palin really think twelve year old girls should be forced to carry and birth their father’s children? I would guess NO but these politicians have to stand for the greater good of what they believe in which sometimes comes off as extreme.

    I’d love for Kelcey to write about how scary it could be to raise our children under the far right. I think all of this has really made me think about how I am going to raise my daughters, how I am going to talk about sex, deal with birth control, protect them, etc….

    Also, I think I may join my mother in her claim that she will leave the United States if McCain gets elected….and all the buttons at the Republican convention referencing Palin as HOT make me want to barf. Ugggghhhhh.
    And, lastly, I personally continue to be baffled about Sarah Palin not showing at eight months pregnant when it was her fifth baby, about her having a controllable labor so as to fly for eight hours, a layover and then a one hour drive to a hospital – when it was the fifth baby….about her daughter being absent from school for five months during the time this baby was born because of Mono (??huh??)….Please if anyone can show me the flip side of this conspiracy theory, please do. It just doesn’t add up, does it?
    Something is fishy – somewhere here….

    And, heck, I thought she gave a great speech. She’s quite personable.

    kelsey (the other one)

  • myshouseof6 says:

    yes kelsey (the other one) i really wrote that. as a mother, as an educated professional i find it sad to see so many people brainwashed by the liberal media, by reality tv, by the “mtv” generation. What is right and good? Being more concerned with human life then with animal rights. Teaching your children to be strong, independent, confident people. Teaching your daughters the skills needed to say no, not to grow up “hungry for a boy’s attention”
    I will not judge anyone for what their teen is doing, I have little ones, I don’t have a clue how to raise a teenager. I know that I will try, I will use my own knowledge to teach them ethics, values, and not to be swayed by the media to learn what is acceptable today.

    And the conspiracy theory’s on her baby… well, you are just spiraling down into a sense of desperation there.

    Good job to mamabird for getting everyone so fired up, if anything, maybe more of us will get involved and make it to the polls.

  • kelsey Kleiman says:

    Dear ?? (myhouseof6),
    I don’t think its fair that you make such blanket statements as brainwashed by liberal media. Maybe its just that a lot of people are simply liberal because their intellect and instinct guides them that way. Maybe people just believe in choice. Maybe people believe that God / spiritual beliefs are personal.

    I also don’t think it’s fair when you called the women commenting on Kelcey’s site hypocrite liberal gals. Please explain how the opinions expressed are hypocritical.

    My opinions don’t have to do with being brainwashed. I am a 36 year old mother, educated, some would say professional even (: – I just have opinions. It’s just me and how I feel as a human. My views have nothing to do with MTV or reality TV or brainwashing.

    Where do you get your views from?

    What is right and good?

    Being more concerned with human life then with animal rights.

    Is that comment about the polar bears????

    Teaching your children to be strong, independent, confident people.

    Of course, this is a good thing. Did I suggest anything differently?

    Teaching your daughters the skills needed to say no, not to grow up “hungry for a boy’s attention”

    This too, fine and good. Did I say the contrary? (no, I shared something personal and you’re throwing it back in my face)

    And, what if your daughter is date raped or violently raped by a stranger? She can’t say no to that, can she? What if she wants to abort or prevent? There are so many actual issues to discuss. So, if you are all fired up, tell me something that matters. Sway me. Move me.

    How do you feel about abstinence only sex education? Do you believe it works even though studies show it doesn’t?
    Did you wait til marriage? Have you ever or do you use contraception? Give me something real to hold onto houseof6.

    How have you gotten to where you are?

    And, what are the skills needed to say no? How do you teach them? Or is it more complicated than that? When should a girl say yes and when no?

    I think these are interesting questions and topics for mom blog.

    You can try and teach your daughter not to grow up hungry for boy’s attention. You can try and teach your son to respect the words “no”. But, I think the hunger I am speaking of transcends a lesson. There is a whole cocktail of factors that lead to this both within the family and outside. And, TV and media is a big one, all the idiotic women’s magazines out there on the market talking about cleavage and tits and cellulite and blah, blah, blah….and stupid buttons on old men that sexualize Palin…and a pregnant 17 year old clasping on to her boyfriends hand on national television.

    i agree that a strong family unit builds strength in young women (and young men) – especially a strong and present father. Believe me, even though you may think I am a hypocritical, brainwashed liberal who lives on reality TV – well, I’m not. I’m an intelligent, thoughtful, emotional, mother and wife who plans on raising strong, independent women for daughters. I hope that my daughters chose to have sex for the first time with the right person. I hope their first time is beautiful whether they are married or not, gay or straight. I pray to God that they never get raped, have to endure an abortion for any reason and have children or get married if that’s not what they want.

    I never really get to have contact with Republicans or pro-lifers as I live in New York City where they are few and far between. So, thank you for the back and forth. I hope you can be more forthcoming and clear in your views and opinions.


  • Jen says:

    Wow Kelc, what a firestorm! I’m jazzed up from all this reading — too bad I have to run out to preschool open house to meet the new teachers! I do think SP will backfire on McCain, and I can’t help thinking that this mother is forcing her 17 y/o daughter to marry a 17 y/o lughead (OK just my opinion and I don’t know for sure they’re being forced but I would bet)…they’re so young to be playing “house” and god knows they don’t want to get married, they just want to look at their Myspace pages all day. I can see her having the baby and all but making them marry because of politics. Sad.

  • myhouseof6 says:

    i agree, i love that the back and forth can occur here, safely. tried this at work, let me just tell you, it proved to be a poor choice.
    im not a straight ticket republican.
    im not too excited about mccain.
    i am definitely pro environment.
    i just think an extra push in the moral direction is a good thing.
    you don’t teach your children how to eat too many cookies and then go throw them up. you teach them not to eat too many cookies to start with. you don’t teach your daughter to have safe sex in highschool, you teach her no sex at all until she is an adult. will it work, i have not a clue. my oldest is seven.

    i think palin is full of ideas, charismatic, educated, experienced. she gets me excited to vote. i haven’t felt that way yet. i think this is america and we all have different opinions. im glad that people aren’t brainwashed, that they are watching the speeches, reading the papers and making a choice.

    im sorry for my hypocrite comment. i said it out of emotion, it was not fair.

    i love this blog, it has very different views than my own, you live in new york, i live in the midwest, raised in a farm/hunting town.
    i work full time while my husband is going to school and is staying home with four children. i guess i relate to her.

    my supper is burning, gotta run, and no its not placenta.

  • Aunt Marcia (Guess Whose?) says:

    I’d like to think Rick would figure out how to change a diaper or clean a toilet if you were running for Vice President. I’m waiting for the first stud Palin schtupped outside of her long term marriage to come forward with the dirty deed.

  • Lanie says:

    Congratulations on the quote Kelc! I cannot comment on Sarah Palin’s choices because everyone has the right to make their own. All I can say is that upon finding out that my son had Down Syndrome I could not drive myself home from the doctor’s office let alone run a state.

kelcey kintner