The Latest Sexism Meme
Michelle Cottle ties herself into knots
Working mothers in particular should be holding their breath. The McCain camp's decision to pitch Palin's Supermom-of-five status as one of her chief assets has opened yet another front in the endless and endlessly counterproductive Mommy Wars. The moment Palin's addition to the ticket was announced, women began publicly and privately savaging the hard-charging governor for perceived mothering missteps both great and small. (What kind of pregnant woman is reckless enough to travel twelve-plus hours from Texas to Alaska after her water breaks? What mom subjects her pregnant, unmarried 17-year-old to the scrutiny of a presidential race?! How dare she take her newborn to a campaign event without socks?!!) How, or whether one should even try, to balance career and family remains a raw subject for women in this country, and the centrality of Palin's motherhood to her candidacy guarantees that this corrosive debate will rage for the remainder of the election.
It would seem more productive to point out that those leveling those claims are engaging in sexist behavior, but of course that doesn't fit Cottle's desire to bash Sarah Palin.