An open letter to Sarah Palin


To the editor:

Aye, Sarah! It was with pride and pleasure that I received the news that you, a woman, had been chosen to be candidate for vice president of the U.S. But aye, Sarah! I fear you are riding roughshod over your own needs as a woman and those of your own family. Just as our airline stewards and stewardesses admonish us to put on our own oxygen masks first in times of danger, so I would admonish you to remember your own and your children’s needs even as you are willing to take on responsibilities for the rest of us. How else can I believe you will be there for me and my children and even my great-grandchildren when we need you?

As you know only too well, the media feed on stories about your personal life and family. We were told that you flew back home to Wasilla, leaking amniotic fluid, gave birth to your youngest child, and returned to your desk as governor three days later. That does not please me! I would rather you had rested and had given yourself time to bond with your newborn infant. I understand that this child has Down’s syndrome, and that the other children were not told of this before he was born. It might have been wiser for you to have prepared the other children for his coming and talked with them about the special importance the family might have for him in his life.

Inevitably your candidacy exposed your 17-year-old, pregnant, unmarried daughter to the ravages of the tabloids in every city and town in the country. Had you considered that pain this would be inflicting on her before accepting the nomination? This must be very painful for you now as well as for her. And again, on the very same day that you flew back to Wasilla to bid farewell to your young son before he left for Iraq, you had to limit your time with him because you were giving your first major unscripted interview on national television. Enough said.

Aye, Sarah! The great honor that has been given you was not for a “mission” you had been “wired” for, but rather as a trust … even as a sacred trust. But it comes at a terrible price: responsibility for all of us here in the U.S., and especially for us women and mothers and our children. We expect more from your candidacy because you are one of us. Perhaps that is why we watch so carefully how you handle your own life situations.

Sarah, maybe you should have “blinked.” At least once.