Going Rogue: The End of the GOP

This November, Sarah Palin’s memoir Going Rogue: An American Life will be released. For conservatives, this may be the most exciting book release since the Bible. For me, it is only a sad reminder of the unfortunate path the party I used to belong to has taken.

To preface, I do not hate Sarah Palin because I am not sure who the real Sarah is. I know the vast majority of her political positions, platforms and zingers were not written by her but by old white men sitting in a back room smoking cigars and secretly thinking that they could never get a girl like Sarah back in high school. Instead, I hate what Sarah Palin represents. She represents the anti-intellectualism and religious fundamentalism of the GOP that made me proud to vote for Barack Obama last fall.

During the 2008 election, McCain’s best trait over Obama was his vast experience. Not only did McCain have extensive military experience, but also his time on Capitol Hill made him well versed in how Congress determines both foreign and domestic policy. Instead of settling into a routine, McCain had consistently challenged his party on issues he felt strayed from the party’s roots and always put those limousine liberals in their place. Compare that to Obama, an inexperienced senator, and it seems like there is no competition. But instead of choosing a fellow experienced moderate, McCain decided that inexperience was “in” and chose Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin. Suddenly, her lack of experience made her a “maverick” instead of a poor leader.

After all, Sarah Palin had not gone to an elite college and gotten a “good” education. She had not traveled to the so-called “out of the country” or read any “newspapers.” You know who sits around getting an education, traveling to other countries and reading newspapers to understand current events? Oh, that’s right, intelligent people. By holding up as an example a woman who knew nothing of the world around her, the world she would lead as Vice President, they were condemning intellectualism and putting forth a party of close-minded individuals.

Yet, Sarah Palin was a trailblazer for women, right? As a woman, if Sarah is the future of feminism, I might as well throw on an apron and practice baking casseroles now, because I’m never getting a job. Smiling sweetly and winking while saying something biting but not very substantive is not the way to present yourself as a strong politician. That’s more Regina George telling you she loves your skirt when it’s actually “fugly.” No matter your gender, nobody will take you seriously if you mask your arguments with a silly smile. Sarah Palin should have spoken with a manner showing the confidence of her convictions. By discussing serious policy issues with the vague sarcasm of a bitchy high school girl, Sarah Palin has reinforced the stereotype that women are too shrill and emotional and not reasonable enough for the political arena.

Many conservatives excitedly see Sarah Palin as the future of the Republican Party. This could be a good thing, they argue, look at the enthusiasm and youthful exuberance she brought to the party. However, if someone like Sarah Palin is the future of the Republican Party, they could be the next “Whigs” and be voted off the scene.

When Sarah Palin opposes gay marriage, she ignores the trends that predict in the near future, most of us will recognize this fundamental civil right. When Sarah Palin claims, “the jury’s still out” on the existence of climate change, she ignores an issue that will surely impact our economy, foreign policy and maybe life as we know it. When Sarah Palin could not name one journalistic publication she reads in an interview with Katie Couric, she ignores the progress of the information age and her informed constituents. While she may be young and beautiful, looking at the political trends, she is not a maverick but a dinosaur. Good thing the Bible never mentions those.

Contact Katie David at [email protected].