Senator Obama can say what he likes and stand aside, but since I'm no Democrat I see no reason not to comment on Governor Palin's impending grandmotherhood. The argument is very simple: Palin has been presented to us since last Friday as an exemplar of family values. Bushies who've been critical toward Senator McCain are reportedly swooning over her, not merely because she'd be the first MILF to stand a heartbeat from power, but because she preaches the conservative doctrine on abortion, intelligent design, etc. She proudly sent her oldest boy to war and just as proudly kept a baby doomed with Down's Syndrome. But by her own standards and those of the movement that's embraced her, she's a lousy mother. She couldn't control her daughter, so shouldn't the reactionaries ask themselves whether she neglected her maternal duties in favor of political ambition? Shouldn't they ask whether, if she can't govern her daughter, she should be trusted with any part of governing the country?
Palin is not entitled to privacy on this issue because she and her ilk do not acknowledge privacy rights for anyone else when it comes to reproductive freedom and sexual morality. Since her kind considers it the business of the state whether anyone else carries an unwanted pregnancy to term, we have every right to ask what went wrong with this family that led to little Palin getting pregnant. Conservatives may be satisfied that Palin is making the girl and her boyfriend do the right thing, but her status as a presumptive moral teacher (you know, "telling us how to live," etc.) should not go unscathed after this episode. On more immediate political issues, we can still withhold judgment, but if Palin was the great right hope on moral issues, she's lost this round.