Friday, March 4, 2011

Explain the Difference To Me, Huck

Natalie Portman or Bristol Palin - who is the "bad influence"

Former Arkansas Governor and potential 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee knows what it takes to get the Tea Party Republican vote: "attack liberals, flirt with birtherism, and cut taxes for millionaires." Huck has always been a proponent of voodoo economics, but recently he has entered the realm of birtherism by declaring in multiple interviews that President Obama grew up in Kenya and has an un-American, anti-colonial world view (never mind the fact that Obama never went to Kenya until he was in his 20s, he grew up in Hawaii, and actually, who has a "pro-colonial" view in 2011?). Bottom line: Huck says a lot of ridiculous shit.

Realizing that toying with being a birther is not a way to victory in 2012, Huck decided to go back to 1992 and follow the Dan Quayle playbook for electoral success. Huckabee decided that it was time to attack Hollywood or something, and he used a different media appearance to attack Academy Award winning actress, Natalie Portman. He criticized her choice to have a baby without being married (though she is engaged, a fact that Huckabee apparently "overlooked"). "People see a Natalie Portman or some other Hollywood starlet who boasts of, 'Hey look, you know, we're having children, we're not married, but we're having these children, and they're doing just fine,'" he said. "But there aren't really a lot of single moms out there who are making millions of dollars every year for being in a movie."

Though this sexist attack seems stuck in the values of the 1950s, it is quite hypocritical for Huckabee and any other Republican to utilize it in light of their non-reaction to the unwed pregnancy of Bristol Palin. Palin, daughter of 2008 Vice Presidential nominee and Fox News personality Sarah Palin, entered the public  eye for the first time as an unwed, high school drop out with a bun in the oven. There was no criticism of the younger Palin, and in fact, the right celebrated her decision to "choose life." Yet, with Natalie Portman, her decision to have the baby was attacked.

Natalie Portman is a Harvard graduate and a very successful actress. She does make millions of dollars a year (something worshiped in conservatives, yet somehow criticized in liberals) for her work, and she has a very stable home life. She is currently engaged to her baby's father. Bristol Palin dropped out of high school, had no means of financial support other than her parents, and flaunted her "choice" with appearances on numerous television shows and a stint on Dancing With the Stars. She even became a spokesperson for abstinence, even though she is clearly unfamiliar with the concept. Mr. Huckabee, why no criticism of Bristol Palin?

To me, they are the same. Both got pregnant, both decided to have the baby, and neither was married at the time of conception. Portman is a liberal, however, and Palin is a conservative. I think I see why he said nothing about Palin, yet took the first opportunity to attack Portman.

Either way, Huckabee's is a very stupid and dated argument. It's attacks like this that turn most female voters away from the GOP. So, part of me wants him to continue. But, the blatant hypocrisy (typical in many on the right) is an issue for me. Why does he believe in different standards for people based solely on their political views?


Darrell Michaels said...

Portman was wrong, in my opinion, but has the right to do as she pleases.

Bristol was also very wrong. The difference is that Bristol acknowledged her error and sought to make amends by speaking out for abstinence.

Further, I seem to recall a lot of conservative repudiation of Bristol, but you are correct that they did applaud her decision to choose life, rather than egregiously exacerbate her initial lack of judgment by aborting the baby.

I don't know if Portman is a liberal or Bristol is a conservative for that matter, but they both seemed to get the cart before the horse in my opinion.

Dave Splash said...

Why do Natalie Portman or Bristol Palin need to "make amends" to you, me or anyone? Why do so many feel compelled to attack people in the public eye for doing things differently than they would?

I don't know either woman, and I probably never will. I don't care what they do in their personal lives. I wish more people on the right would adopt that element of libertarianism into their world view.