Kathleen Parker, a columnist for the Chicago Tribune, wrote a column today saying that Sarah Palin should bow out of the campaign. Her reasons are numerous and I could not disagree more.
I started to leave a comment, but the more I wrote, the more I realized this was really a blog post.
Kathleen Parker: "She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first."
Let me just say I do not and have never thought Sarah Palin was a good choice for McCain's VP. I loathe Sarah Palin and everything she believes in. As a rape survivor, I am sick at the idea of having to pay for my own rape kit and that if she had her way, I would not be allowed the choice to terminate any resulting pregnancy (I was fortunate enough to not get pregnant). My head wants to explode when I think about what she would do to the progress in women's equality.
Sarah Palin's understanding of foreign policy and the economy, the biggest issues of this election and probably of the next 4 to 8 years or more, is embarrassing for her and the country. That the GOP could not find a better qualified running mate to "shake up" John McCain's campaign is laughable and insulting. It is inexcusable that the GOP has not been able to better educate and prepare their Vice Presidential candidate for even the most obvious questions.
That said, Sarah Palin CANNOT withdraw.
John McCain chose her and the GOP celebrated her. As we have seen time and time again, they obviously did both without any sort of vetting. Had Barack Obama not vetted his running mate (and let's be clear, John McCain had almost 6 months to find and vet his choice, but Barack Obama had less than half that time), we would see non-stop 24/7 ads about it from the GOP all the way to the election.
Kathleen Parker falsely believes that "no one would criticize a mother who wants to put her family first" and I could not disagree more. If Sarah Palin were to drop out citing her family as her reason, there would be very loud whispers for years to come that a woman couldn't really take on the task of being Vice President, much less being President. Future women candidates for President will be scrutinized with "are you SURE you can put the Country above your family?" It will be used as evidence to bolster the "women can't really do it all" argument that some people still believe.
18 million cracks in the glass ceiling will become barely visible.
Don't misunderstand me, I believe that motherhood is the most important (and least appreciated and underpaid) job in the world. And I believe that women CAN have it all. I believe that women SHOULD be CEOs, Nobel Prize winners, and Heads of State. But there are choices we all have to make in our lives and a balance we each have to strike for ourselves. When the choice you make is to become a heart beat away from being the President, unfortunately, you've lost the luxury of saying "I change my mind" 38 days before the election.
The impulsiveness of both John McCain and Sarah Palin says volumes about the type of judgement they both have, but they both made this bed and it's time they slept in it.
As I've said, I'm no fan of Sarah Palin and I pray every night that the McCain-Palin ticket loses this election, but Sarah Palin has to see this through. She owes that to the women and girls of America.