Friday, February 5, 2010

This reminds me of something, but I can't quite put my finger on it

Palin's campaign against the "R-word" hits snag with Limbaugh

Sarah Palin's campaign against the derogatory usage of the word "retard" collided with her campaign to maintain her popularity with conservatives today, with confusing results.
It reminds me of two things, actually. You betcha it does.

Thing #1: There are a few words you just can't use in public without causing a kerfuffle. Some of them, you can't even use in private if it turns out someone's going to drop a dime on you.* Rahm Emanuel learned a lesson (we hope he learned, anyway) a few days ago by using the "r-word" in a White House meeting.

The last time I was present for a flap over this particular term was in a homeowner's association meeting back in the early '90s. One of my neighbors referred to our landscaper/maintenance guy as a "retard" and was immediately jumped on by another neighbor. He backed right off, but you could tell he felt that he was the one being picked on. Whatever happened to America's fifth freedom anyway, the freedom to be offensive toward the less fortunate?

Thing #2: It's been less than a year since Michael Steele was going head-to-head against Rush Limbaugh for the post of GOP Supreme God-King. As you will recall, Steele was flat on the mat by the end of the second round. Palin's spokesperson is trying to avoid getting in the ring at all over this "r-word" incident, but it may be too late:
A Palin spokeswoman seemed to back away from earlier criticism of conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh. Yesterday, when asked for comment on Limbaugh's use of the "r" word in a recent broadcast, Palin spokeswoman told Greg Sargent of the Washington Post, "Governor Palin believes crude and demeaning name-calling at the expense of others is disrespectful." Today, Stapleton claims the statement was meant generally and she was not specifically referring to Limbaugh. Still, she declined to say that Palin believes Limbaugh's statements were acceptable.
Apparently, Limbaugh still strikes fear into the heart of any Republican pretender to the throne. We continue to watch from a safe distance.

*Re: "drop a dime," just accept that I used to watch Baretta and Police Woman religiously.

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