NQC 10: Sideshow Sarah Palin post-mortem
Lots of twitter activity yesterday (#NQC) leading up to the Sarah Palin event … and mostly silence after the fact. The NQC finally issued a press release this afternoon that celebrated her inspirational remarks, including the influence that Gaither music had on her.
Sue Smith, the songwriter, found her reflections on faith to seem sincere, but did note that the former half-term governor of Alaska was conspicuously at sea about southern gospel and Christian music:
She really doesn’t know anything about southern gospel music. That became apparent when she more or less equated it with country music (and that got some nervous laughter from the so-go crowd) and then called the “Neelons” the “Nehlons.”
Ouch. But real no surprise, of course. Still I never get why politicians do this sort of thing … try to fake an intimate awareness of subcultures with which they may have vague affinities but no real experience of any meaningful sort. In this case, Palin would have been just as widely and roundly celebrated if she’d walked in and said, “I’m from Alaska and Idaho and southern gospel’s not that big up in those parts, but I’m glad to be here today with people who I know share my belief in God and country” blah blah blah. And yet she gaffes her way into a world about which she’s clueless, mucking things up where candor and humility would do just as well. I don’t get it.
Update: Sue Smith, whose blog I quoted above, is miffed because she feels I left readers with an inaccurate sense of her comments by insufficiently contextualizing her thoughts on Sarah Palin’s NQC speech. Interesting that though she’s complaining about being quoted out of context in excerpted remarks, she neglects to tell her readers whose blog she’s referring to, nor does she provide them a link to the full version of what I wrote. But no matter. For my part, when I quote someone, I always try to provide links to the full versions of what people say whenever possible, and I did so in this case. Obviously it’s a matter of interpretation if the kind of gaffes Smith describes Palin making in front of a southern gospel audience means she just made a faux pas or if her remarks about the music demonstrate someone “at sea” (my words) with sg. It clearly seems to be the latter, but Smith just as clearly thinks it was not a “big deal.” That seems overly generous to me (does anyone really think Sarah Palin knows anything more about sg than what her handlers briefed her on before her speech and the odd cd she may have popped in for the ride over from the hotel?), but whatever. Offense was taken where none was intended, so in the interest of bloggery comity, here’s Smith’s original post (again) and her follow up, fwiw. And Sue, I hope you get well soon.Email this Post