As many, I sat gape-mouthed on Wednesday night, a sensation of slow motion horror running through my blood that I can only imagine must be akin to watching a hellacious plane crash, but slowed down to frame by horrific frame. You know it's coming: you've got eyes for God's sake. But more than that, you can FEEL it coming. The pugnacious quack that is Sarah Palin's voice is quite effectively used as a blunt instrument: I had to check after her speech to make sure my ears weren't bleeding. Her bright, self-satisfied expression: smile is too friendly a descriptor, grin is too accessible. Smirk. Yes, Smirk. Smirk with teeth. We've gone from Dubya's clueless smirk to the Smirk With Teeth. She wrapped those two character traits around a little joke about the difference between a pitt bull and a hockey mom being lipstick, and she was quite pleased with herself. Was someone outside that hall of political debauchery finding that funny, too?
As I watched, and kept watching (some catastrophes you can't look away from no matter how grisly), it dawned on me what I was recognizing. For the overarching feeling I had was one of remembering, of having experienced Sarah Palin's demeanor before, of recognition. She was the epitome of the smug leader of the 7th grade mean girls clique. You know, the ones who, in the movies, everyone roots against, because they know the type - correction - ARCHETYPE? It's a given that everyone's suffered at the hands of these ruthless social terminators-in-training at one time or another. But the leader of the pack of these harpies? Oh, yeah. We all know her: she's the one who does everything in her power, short of murder, to bring calamity and sorrow to anyone who doesn't believe the crown of ultimate power belongs on her mean little head.
But this is no movie. If it were, we could all relax in the knowledge that Sarah Palin would get hers; that she would get taken down before the end of the story. Sorry. It would seem that, in real life, the leader of the mean girls can be elevated to the highest office in the free world. And there is something about this particular bellicose, pistol-packin', moose-killin', environment trashin', anti-choice even for victims of incest and rape, anti-same sex marriage, ladling out the tax breaks to her pals in big oil, hockey mom that suggests that this time she won't stop at murder to make sure that crown gets on - and stays on - her nasty little head. Who cares that she inherited a tiny town that had zero debt and left it in the hole $22 million? She's pretty!
Just ask the people of Wasilla, Alaska, who are all too scared that she'll take her revenge on them and their businesses if they dare to speak up and tell the truth. She saw to it that her ex-brother-in-law got fired - but not before firing the top cop who wouldn't fire him to begin with. As they like to say, she's a non-negotiator. If it's not her idea, she's not interested in hearing it. And what's more, you just might get your life ripped apart if you dare try to float any ideas that aren't her own - or her staff's. Ideas aren't considered based upon merit, but rather upon who did the ideating. Want a really bad feeling? Ask the highly respected Wasilla public librarian who Sarah Palin tried to fire because the librarian refused to get rid of the books Sarah Palin wanted gone. That's right, people. CENSORSHIP. In a small town in Alaska. And maybe, just maybe, coming to a theater, library, SCHOOL near you.
Want to hear it directly from the moose's mouth? One brave soul named Anne Kilkenny wrote one brave email last week which has gone platinum on the blogosphere. Hmmm. I wonder why. See what you think:
And just so's you know, Sarah Palin, I believe in God, too. But the God I believe in is loving. Not wrathful, with rewards only for those who kill, maim, and shout in His name. And I resent having you tell me that the God I have has been stupid and ineffectual and wishy-washy. Down through history, the most courageous hearts have exhausted non-violent solutions before bloodshed was deemed necessary. But not you. The queen of the mean girls destroys first, asks questions later. Except that's not entirely true. You are one mean girl who has clearly never questioned your own actions. You rest in the self-righteous belief that everything you do - everything - is absolutely right. As only a true sociopath can do.
Oh, and dear readers, in case you were worried about my usage of a certain vulgarity, let me assuage your revulsion. Because the "c" word in question is conniving.