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Thursday
Sep042008

She Wasn't Talking To Me

Generally speaking, I steer clear of writing about politics which even I find is odd because my own politics are so deeply wound into my life and work that one would expect me to write about it easily. If I tried hard enough I could probably blame the patriarchy for encouraging me to keep me political opinions to myself. The only truth in that is owed to the fact that every time I open my big mouth some troll comes out of hiding and decides to get nasty while ineffectively removing the large stick from its ass. I try to help it along though. That's just me. I'm a helper! I like to help!

With that said, I'm going out on a different branch today. Remember when it was simple and I just wrote about coffee? Those days are long gone, though a delightful iced Americano is somewhere in my future. You may wish I'd had it prior to writing this, but let's live dangerously, shall we? After all, the latest product review I was asked to undertake was this one. If anyone knows anything about enhancing the male penis by harnessing the power of magnets, it's me.

Apparently.

I'm going to forge ahead before I get sidetracked again.

Last night I watched the RNC and the previous week I watched the DNC. Both times I asked my children to watch along with me and yet it was last night's speech by Sarah Palin that made me ill. There's no bone in my body that wants to beat up on a woman so I should plainly state that McCain isn't off limits either. What is off limits is poking fun at Palin's pregnant teenage daughter no matter how many times she trots her out there as a show pony. There is something very bizarre to me about how when teen couples decide to marry after getting pregnant it all somehow becomes OK in everyone's eyes. That's a story for another day and a post about religion (which I also steer clear of for good reason).

While I don't give much credence to people who can read a teleprompter or pronounce nuclear correctly because it was phonetically spelled out for them or even for people who feel they must rid libraries of books, I have to state here that neither McCain nor Palin speak for me. They don't even KNOW me.

What I heard last night in her beauty pageant comedy show was a person who didn't take seriously any of the things that affect me.

I don't know what a snow machine is. She clearly wasn't talking to me.

I don't know anyone who plays hockey. Do hockey moms somehow replace soccer moms? At last night's high school soccer game that I had to attend as an administrator, I saw a sea of faces that crossed cultural lines. In my experience, white wealthy kids get to play hockey. She wasn't talking to me.

She scoffed at Obama's community organizing and pushed for her own small town agenda. You know what I heard in that thinly veiled line? Her lack of experience with people of color and the power of community organization. She doesn't know cities or poverty that way or even what that does for education. She is keeping that dividing line bold and prominent by letting me see what she thinks about that: small town = hard-working white farming families vs. city/community = blacks and latinos and asians and other people she knows nothing about. She so wasn't talking to me.

It's clear that policy was not on her agenda. Nothing was said about education or health care or even the racial issues we have in this country. She's not ready to tackle it and neither is McCain because, and yes I'll say it, THEY HAVE NO EXPERIENCE WITH IT. They've run from it or lived in their hermetically sealed worlds without having to deal with that nastiness. Even if she had mentioned education, my stronghold, my brain would have exploded anyway. It's probably best that she didn't.

I thought that maybe she'd capture me with her lipstick joke, but I'm still not certain if the hockey mom or the pit bull wears it. That's how little I know about hockey moms.

But I do know bullshit rhetoric when I hear it. That performance last night at least let me know where she's coming from and I don't want any part of it.
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Reader Comments (53)

Well said. I don't really know what else to add other than I thought that the entire time, "I have no idea where this woman is coming from."

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterZoot

And I just read that she had her timelines a bit off... when Obama was "just a community organizer," she wasn't the mayor yet - she was busy competing in beauty pageants.

jennys last blog post..http://www.runjenrun.com/archives/2008/08/gone_fishin.php" rel="nofollow">Gone Fishin'

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterjenny

Well said!

Avitables last blog post..http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/avitable/~3/381973390/" rel="nofollow">Conversations between two girls

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAvitable

You captured my sentiments! Go cross post this over at BlogHer!

Lovebabzs last blog post..http://lovebabz.blogspot.com/2008/09/fuck-you-larryhow-about-that.html" rel="nofollow">FUCK YOU LARRY...HOW ABOUT THAT!

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLovebabz

She can't have it both ways -- claim all this outsider/maverick/anti-Washington crap when, as mayor, she hired a lobbyist to bring in big bucks from the federal government.

I agree -- go post this on BlogHer!

mayberrys last blog post..http://mayberrymom.blogspot.com/2008/09/yeah-ill-take-dying-in-my-sleep-thanks.html" rel="nofollow">Yeah, I'll take dying in my sleep, thanks

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermayberry

Kelly, I wish you would post more on your political views. You are smart, articulate, and to my mind, represent a much broader base of Americans than Sarah Palin could ever hope to capture.

Pams last blog post..http://nursepam.typepad.com/21st_century_lesbian_trai/2008/09/palins-bitch.html" rel="nofollow">Palin's Bitch?

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPam

Bravo!

Well said.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMattie

I love you, Mocha Momma.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAngela

In the immortal words of Sarah Palin as she affirmed her readiness to be Vice President - "yup, yup, yup"

I have not heard such blatant racism in a speech since David Duke ran for public office. Yup, yup, yup.

Indeed, the fabulous Lovebabz has it right - cross post on BlogHer. I'll be right there to back you up. (Yup x 3.)

With love and admiration from your fan and friend,
GraceD

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterGraceD

Thank you for forming my thoughts into sentences!!! She was so smug..as if she knew something we didn't. And the community organizer thing...I was yelling at the tv.

How is your wrist/hand?

SHAs last blog post..http://crabapplewhite.blogspot.com/2008/08/are-you-ready-for-some-football.html" rel="nofollow">Are you ready for some football?

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSHA

I may be in the minority here my friends. I'm white, I'm a woman and I'm conservative, but I'm pursuing an MA in Multicultural Education.

I've got a foot in both worlds, a dog in both fights? :)

I grew up in white, middle class suburbia, but my heart and intended vocation is working with children of all colors, from all countries, of varying socio-economic backgrounds, because I love people.

I have shallowly explored the awfulness of NCLB and seen how the Bush administration demands impossible results from overburdened, underequipped teachers through high stakes testing, and how kids still go to schools without books or school supplies; without food in their bellies. I hear of people with no boots who are supposed to pull themselves up by their bootstraps (per Obama's excellent moving speech the other night). I see poor tax bases struggling to support quality education in inner city schools and I see kids suffering and falling through the cracks.

Palin's speech last night was mostly fluff, like nearly all party convention speeches, designed to rally the political troops and blast and undermine the opposition. I think one thing we can agree on here my fellow bloggers is that the waters of political rhetoric are indeed muddy and polluted.

People will continue to support and vote for candidates with whom they can most closely identify, whom they feel address their concerns, and who are most likely to represent their interests in Washington.

Mocha, I would like to hear from you. What would it take for someone like Palin to relate to you? What would satisfy your need to know that she can relate to you or that she cares about the things that you care about? What would you need to see and to hear?

I did notice that the majority of the faces in that arena were caucasian. Did that escape anyone else's notice?

As an aside, I'm proud of you for speaking your mind and saying no only what needs to be said (in the case of parents and students) but also in not being afraid to say what you think and to give your opinion. I admire that trait in you.

Rigels last blog post..http://orionscontemplation.blogspot.com/2008/09/view-poo.html" rel="nofollow">"View" Poo

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRigel

Absolutely. I could not believe that community organizer thing. Her ignorance is astounding.

Graces last blog post..http://www.noonewatching.com/archives/2008/09/shopping_in_my_closet.html" rel="nofollow">Shopping in my closet

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterGrace

And there you have it.

What killed me was that she basically said nothing as to how she would approach the major problems facing our country, and what she DID say was littered with lies (did she not think anybody would fact-check her bullshit?!?).

I can honestly say that I have no problem with a woman in the White House... in many ways, I would actually prefer it... but not this one. Palin's political record and previous acts scares me so badly that I have a hard time even fathoming what it would mean for our country to have a McCain/Palin administration.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDave2

Coming out of lurkdom to say that you are brilliant.

I agree that Sarah Pallin's daughter is off limits.

And I cringed when she referred pejoratively to community organizing.

In fact, I agreed with every word you wrote in this post.

Except perhaps for the bit about hockey. Up here in Canada, it's only *mostly* white, middle class kids that play hockey. ;-) Some lower income, native and some very few kids of colour get to play too.

But the hockey moms that compare themselves proudly to pitbulls? Very, very bad news. And one reason I am glad that my kids have not asked to play hockey.

Nevery mind the trolls, Mocha Momma. There are many, many more of us who love it when you speak your mind.

lauries last blog post..http://notjustaboutcancer.blogspot.com/2008/09/fixing-insomnia.html" rel="nofollow">fixing insomnia

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlaurie

I am a white, middle American woman, raised in a small town in Iowa.

And Palin wasn't speaking to me either.

I was ill at the way she mocked Obama and his work. Ill. It is one thing to disagree on policy - it is quite another to be so vile. And this after the man DEFENDED her daughter's right to privacy AND made the point that his mother was 18 when she had him.

She made a mockery of the process last night. And a mockery of everyone who believes in the Democratic platform.

Miss Britts last blog post..http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/MissBritt/~3/381975162/" rel="nofollow">Behind the scenes of Clearly, You’re Retarded

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Britt

Fabulous! I'm putting it in the post I'm struggling (emotional as hell about last night for some reason) to finish. Just great girl. No surprise, of course. I think if it doesn't cause work trouble you should write about politics more often...

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCynthia Samuels

Thank you so much for this post. You said a lot that I haven't been able to formulate quite yet. Maybe I'll just post a link and say "What she said."

Kaleighs last blog post..http://anotherworkingmom.blogspot.com/2008/08/memphis-saturday-august-16.html" rel="nofollow">Memphis, Saturday, August 16

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKaleigh

Brilliantly said. I listened in the event she said something worth listening to and I got nothing - except angrier. Do they really believe Americans/women are so stupid and shallow?

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTina

That is EXACTLY what I thought as I listened. As she made her snipes. As she told half truths. Se SO doesn't get it.

Aimee Greeblemonkeys last blog post..http://www.greeblemonkey.com/2008/09/video-game-conundrum.html" rel="nofollow">The Video Game Conundrum

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAimee Greeblemonkey

I have nothing to say except I agree 100%.

Marias last blog post..http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/ImmoralMatriarch/~3/382921613/" rel="nofollow">I was so, so sure. And I was so, so wrong.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

I wasn't too surprised about the rhetoric but found myself popping in an old black and white movie because I just couldn't stomach it anymore. And both CNN and Yahoo News have already fact-checked her and she gets a D- on her "speech".

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAngie

Laurie said it for me. Hockey is played by rich kids... and Canadians. I grew up far from rich and we played by hosing down the backyard so that it turned into an "ice rink" and then traded off playing so we could borrow each others skates.

I don't like Palin and I didn't watch her speech (what with living in Korea), but I have to wonder if coming from Alaska doesn't change the hockey comment a wee bit.

Amandas last blog post..http://life-suitcase.blogspot.com/2008/09/rereads.html" rel="nofollow">Rereads

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

Thanks for this. Seriously, I'm on the verge of crying because after last night, I'm wondering what's happening to my country when people stand up and cheer when a political leader says that people are poor because they are lazy and the more people cutting through the BS, the better. You need to make a secret political blog.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKBO

Interesting. I didn't see her speech. What little I have seen of her does turn my stomach. That and all the guys at work oohing and aahing over how hot she is (seriously? WTF?!?) and I really can't watch her. It doesn't surprise me that she doesn't get it. Most white folks who've never lived in a mixed community don't get it. Heck, I grew up in an increasingly mixed community and sometimes I don't get it. But I keep my mouth shut and listen when I realized I'm missing something.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmy in StL

For the first time since I've been reading you, I will say that I respectfully disagree. I am obviously a minority amongst your readers. And you know what, that's ok. I'm not one to let the political views affect my opinions of people. I usually stay out of political discussions too. I don't know why I'm even speaking up now. I guess to say I still love ya, even though we disagree politically.

Susans last blog post..http://sameoldstlbee.blogspot.com/2008/08/update.html" rel="nofollow">Update

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Hockey's not just for rich kids or for white kids. As hockey mom, without lipstick or pitbull growl, I take offense that Sarah Palin thinks she's speaking for me. She is not. Hockey parents who want to go on record to say "I'm not that!" join "Hockey Mommas for Obama" on myspace.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJanet

I didn't hear her speech; didn't think I could stomach it. But I echo what someone said earlier - I am scared to death that they could be running our country.

joannas last blog post..http://jlucymuses.blogspot.com/2008/09/remembering-katrina-part-2.html" rel="nofollow">Remembering Katrina (part 2)

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterjoanna

[...] No Comments i’m not one to spout my allegiance politically or religiously. there are a lot of folks doing it today, [...]

I called "shenanigans" on her speech so many times last night my husband thought I was convulsing.

Seriously.

Apparently the speech was written by a Bush writer of some kind. I thought I recognized the fuzzy focus and fog machine show somewhere!

Beths last blog post..http://notterriblyordinary.wordpress.com/2008/08/31/wino/" rel="nofollow">Wino

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

Wow. I have even more respect for you now than I did before. Amazingly well put.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAll Adither

I couldn't have hoped for better discourse than what I'm reading with exception to the email troll, but I've given that over to someone else to respond. Sometimes, it's not worth my time when it's irrational.

But my computer keeps shutting off and I am having a hard time responding the the very well thought out questions people have been asking.

And I'm all for respectful disagreement. Keep it clean, folks.

I will be deleting nasty comments like the one I just found.

Tomorrow? I'm back to writing about fashion! Yippee.

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

In a word, BRAVO!

ms_teachers last blog post..http://middle-school-teacher.blogspot.com/2008/09/as-if-this-is-surprise.html" rel="nofollow">As if this is a surprise!

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterms_teacher

You said exactly what I had been thinking about her! I am not even "of color" (well maybe sorta pinkish with freckles? lol) but I could feel that she had NO clue about any of us who live and work in multi-ethnic communities/schools/etc.

Your blog entry nailed it -- well put!
Thanks for speaking your mind!

Rhondas last blog post..http://rhoz.blogspot.com/2008/09/happy-birthday-andy.html" rel="nofollow">Happy Birthday Andy!

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRhonda

Thanks for the banning books link. I've seen it other places since but this is the first place I found it. It's funny, one of the most frightening things in that article was that as mayor she told public servants that they couldn't talk to the press without her permission - although I should note that the http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1837918,00.html" rel="nofollow">Time version of the same story says she only told that to the department heads: ("At some point in those fractious first days, Palin told the department heads they needed her permission to talk to reporters. "She put a gag order on those people, something that you'd expect to find in the big city, not here," says Naegele.").

I've seen work environments like that before and I can tell you what effect it has on the people working in them - the anger, resentment and paranoia it generates, none of which helps further the public good (openness in government tends to work much better for both the people doing the serving and the public being served, IMHO). Those aren't exactly the results one would expect from someone who is a "good manager" - I'd love to see an interview with some of the folks she managed during those days to see if their experiences match up with what I've seen or whether they differed.

Good post, Lady. Alot to think about.

Caffeinated Librarians last blog post..http://caffeinatedlibrarian.blogspot.com/2008/09/notes-on-run.html" rel="nofollow">Notes on the Run

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCaffeinated Librarian

Great post! I hope you talk about politics more often! It's going to be really hard not to over the next two months.

Analis last blog post..http://analisfirstamendment.blogspot.com/2008/09/community-organizing-not-laughing.html" rel="nofollow">Community Organizing - Not A Laughing Matter

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnali

You know I grew up in Chicago, inner city, and I am a Independent...
I try to listen to both sides of the story and balance it all.
I'm thankful we live in a country that allows these blogs, political discussions and all the silly bashing heard here in this blog today.... Open up your mind and listen, to BOTH sides, it's the only way you can actually make a truely informed opinon. Your completly shutting off and picking apart anything from the "other side" and that's just not helpful - it creates pinholed focus... and yes, I'm of color, as black as they come sweetie, but just as Michelle Obama used to say before she became to public (we here in Chicago all have heard this). If people of color (all colors) want true equality, and to be truely respected , they need to stop pointing out that they are so different. Because you can't be the same, and be different....

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSherril

I do want true equality. Last night was pure entertainment and Palin wanted nothing more than to get the cheers and laughs. It was a waste of political time for all of us. Republicans should be PISSED that she spent precious time providing a show.

And you've come AWFULLY close to sounding exactly like the email I got earlier today, even going so far as to using the same words.

My opinion is informed. Never make the mistake that I'm not listening or reading or being informed. Or spellchecking.

Mochas last blog post..http://www.mochamomma.com/2008/09/04/she-wasnt-talking-to-me/" rel="nofollow">She Wasn’t Talking To Me

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMocha

Ex-act-ly. & kudos.

Like, Sherril, I grew up in the environs of Chicago's South Side and I got a little color...well, more than a little...but the thing that galls when listening to Palin's mean-spirited speech last night is precisely her tone that suggests that those of us who do not live exactly as she does are not quite regular, ordinary Americans. Somehow, community organizing is bad; PTA good. Hockey mom, good; soccer mom, not so much. That is the tone that causes division. Sherril, I suggest that you read some Walt Whitman to hear how he envisioned a diverse, multicultural America, home to roughs and tenders, all races, all creeds, all genders, all aromas even. And that, to him, was the great strength and promise of America. A claim he made on the eve of the Civil War. In the best America, we are NOT all the same. The promise of equality should never be mistaken for the push towards conformity. Of the urge to sameness as opposed to equality, you'd do well to heed Emerson: "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds."

September 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterjcedric

:-)

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commentererica

I was totally and utterly put off by both Palin and Guilliani. The fact that they could belittle the work of community organizers really offended me. As a former community organizer and as a person of color - without community organizers there would have been NO CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT! So, in essence they told me kiss my ass little black girls and boys and any other person of color. We are white, we are right and you are nobody.

Renee aka MekhisMoms last blog post..http://cutiebootycakes.blogspot.com/2008/09/abc.html" rel="nofollow">ABC

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRenee aka MekhisMom

I agree whole heartedly with what you've said Mocha. I couldn't bring myself to watch the RNC. I was pretty much finished with Palin after learning that she is against Sex Ed in schools (amongst other things), but why wouldn't she be as a conservative.

Completely don't wanna offend anyone, especially the fellow blogger conservatives who are reading, but I must say that I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THE CONSERVATIVE VIEWPOINT. If this country were to stick to "tradition" that conservatives favor black folks would probably still be picking cotton.

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMs. Bar B

I love this post! You tell it how it is!

~ FC

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFC

gah! I just checked the price of hockey compared to soccer, baseball and football! Ack!! It is more expensive than all of them - and several hundred dollars more expensive than soccer.
Eek - you rocked this post.

Karens last blog post..http://needsnewbatteries.blogspot.com/2008/09/i-just-love-these.html" rel="nofollow">I just love these...

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

[...] fairly certain everything I want to say has been said by Jon Stewart, or here, here, here, here, here or here.  So I’m not going to rant.  I did it last week.  Here are the only things [...]

[...] Mocha Momma: She scoffed at Obama’s community organizing and pushed for her own small town agenda. You know [...]

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPalingenesis « The Calli

Nonsense. This African-American skipped Palin's speech until it was everywhere. I'm not voting Republican and have no need to play moderate. But this b.s. that Palin was making a 'racial' statement is B.F.S. Obama was a FAILED community organizer. If his fan club can come into the adult world, they'd know that. Barack admits it. It's why he went to Harvard.
Community organizer is not mayor. And Palin was not insulting Barack in a racial manner. Mocha, calm the heck down.
If there were adults present -- and not little drooling fans -- the adult response is, "Yeah, Barack failed as a community organizer. He admits that himself. That's why he went to HARVARD! THAT'S WHAT ADULTS DO. WE FAIL AND PICK UP OURSELVES." I'm thrilled Barack failed as a community organizer. If he'd succeeded, he'd be some mayor tops. Instead, he was honest, he said, "This isn't working." He made a decision and look what an amazing thing he did.
Every thing is not a racial insult and the fan club needs to try knowing the candidate because Barack has been very clear that he went to Harvard after failing as a community organizer.

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKeesha

Excellent post. It is really disturbing to me that they don't seem to understand the incredible importance and success that community organizations have in so many of the realms of life that they don't seem to find important, but that impact a large portion of the populations of various cities. And to say that being a leader of such organizations is not experience is to say that caring about the real people of this nation is unimportant. Caring about helping them with health/job/education/home/relationship/economic issues and problems means nothing.

It is all craziness.

a.eyes last blog post..http://1219sibmtt.blogspot.com/2008/09/im-going-under-bridge.html" rel="nofollow">I'm going under the bridge

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commentera.eye

It's funny, because I really feel her, hockey and all. And I'm a basketball mother (where my kids are the only dark specks on our team, at least). I don't hear the black exclusion in her rhetoric. I don't hear Obama laying it on, either. I really thought it was a non-issue in this election. Am I naive?

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterangie

I seriously could barely watch her speak. I lasted 5 minutes and then put Project Runway on.

But look who I saw yesterday.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/scoutj/sets/72157607115070566/

I'm in love with her. Seriously/

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterscoutj

I wrote a political blog this week too, but not really a serious one. I read the speech online and a few articles. I will admit to gleaning very little of what you just pointed out from that speech. Then again I live in a very different part of the country and have had different experiences so why would we see it the same. So while you may get a few haters who can't stand you don't think the same as them, I am glad to get a nudge in a direction that I might not have considered before. Then again I may go my own way, but it was a great thought provocating post.

White Hot Magiks last blog post..http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/WhiteHotMagik/~3/382398065/political-prowess.html" rel="nofollow">Political Prowess

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWhite Hot Magik

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