Sarah Palin’s folksy outdoor image has taken a hit in light of her obvious shortcomings as a modern-day Jim Bridger, ironically while exercising her Second Amendment rights. It’s one thing to lie to the Lower 48 about being a wilderness scout in larger-than-life Alaska, but when you put it on TV for everyone to see, the mystique wears off pretty quickly.
People aren’t complete idiots, even people naturally disposed to like Sarah Palin – like hunters and conservatives.
And that’s just what Sarah Palin did. The former governor of Alaska brought a TV crew on weekend-long trip to the Arctic tundra to do some shooting for her Sarah Palin’s Alaska show on TLC (The Learning Channel) and her shortcomings became evident immediately. Among her errors:
- She shot 4-5 times at a wandering caribou and missed
- When she shot the first time and missed, she panicked and shot at it as it moved, apparently thinking it would be easier to hit that way than when standing still
- She took no practice shots
- She didn’t check the sites (they were off)
- She didn’t carry her own rifle; she let her father and his friend carry it for her (her father is 72-years-old to Palin’s sprightly 46)
- She let her father load the rifle
- When the rifle was passed to her, MamaGrizzly “moved her finger inside its trigger guard, a breach of basic safety rules” as one website noted
- “On leaving her hunting camp one morning, Ms Palin pointed to the horizon and declared ‘Let’s go west.’ There followed an awkward pause. “That’s east,” noted her father.”
- She was under-armed (her father called her weapon a “varmint rifle” yet she expressed concern that it might have a kick)
The problem for Sarah Palin fans is how to reconcile her obvious phoniness with her claims. Republicans have shown a breath-taking ability to put facts aside for the sake of ideology, “what should be” for “what is” but can they do it when it’s blaring in their faces on their big screen HD TVs?
The reaction from liberals has been more predictable. Aaron Sorkin, who created West Wing, told Huffington Post that she had made a “snuff film” and called her a “phony Pioneer girl” and a “witless bully.” Animal rights groups and PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) have also complained.
Sarah Palin’s witty Facebook response?
“Unless you’ve never worn leather shoes, sat upon a leather chair or eaten meat, save your condemnation.”
At least she used Facebook rather than treating the English language the way she treated that caribou on Twitter.
That’s scant justification for putting herself, her crew, her father and his friend, and the animals she is shooting at in danger through inept handling of firearms. There are reasons people take lessons in handling those things, Wannabe Huntress-in-Chief.
Sorkin’s response was typically witty and scathingly to the point:
I don’t think I will save my condemnation, you phony pioneer girl. (I’m in film and television, Cruella, and there was an insert close-up of your manicure while you were roughing it in God’s country. I know exactly how many feet off camera your hair and make-up trailer was.)
Palin isn’t likely to care what Hollywood thinks, or what leftist elites like PETA think, but she should care about what her supporters and potential supporters think, and she’s just misfired on that front. Imagine hiring a guide to take you over the Rockies only to discover he’d never been out of the city himself? That’s what Republicans are doing when they put their trust in a savvy-common sense politicians only to discover that she’s simply a self-promoting grifter who has no idea what she’s talking about.
She’d be a fish out of water in the White House, as out of water as she has been hunting and fishing on her self-promotional TV show. She’s a fake and a phony and it has never been more obvious. Take note, America, especially you Republicans.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.