Heather Mallick’s trashing of Sarah Palin and others

When John McCain picked Sarah Palin as his running mate it was a given that the Democrats would do everything within their power to diminish her record, character and and anything else that might make her attractive to voters. This has happened. Actually it has happened in spades due in large part to the public attention that Palin’s candidacy has received and which has apparently threatened not only the official Democratic campaign, but to a greater extent a segment of the population who want to see Senator Obama in the White House at any cost.

What is noteworthy is the nastiness of these attacks on Palin’s person, her background and her family.

Granted, you expect the nasty and often vicious attacks that you routinely find on blogs and the likes from anonymous responders. They are so predictable that it is difficult to take them seriously. But what fascinates me is the vitriol that rolls out from women who seem to find Palin to be an affront to their sensibilities.

This has extended even to Canadian commentators, where columnist Heather Mallick wrote a couple of particularly nasty pieces which not only trashed Sarah Palin, but Alaskans, men in general and Republicans in particular.

In a column posted on the CBC website Mallick shows her hatred for Republicans specifically and apparently men in general.

It’s possible that Republican men, sexual inadequates that they are, really believe that women will vote for a woman just because she’s a woman. They’re unfamiliar with our true natures. Do they think vaginas call out to each other in the jungle night? I mean, I know men have their secret meetings at which they pledge to do manly things, like being irresponsible with their semen and postponing household repairs with glue and used matches. Guys will be guys, obviously.

Then she manages to attack the whole Palin family in one paragraph.

Palin has a toned-down version of the porn actress look favoured by this decade’s woman, the overtreated hair, puffy lips and permanently alarmed expression. Bristol has what is known in Britain as the look of the teen mum, the “pramface.” Husband Todd looks like a roughneck; Track, heading off to Iraq, appears terrified. They claim to be family obsessed while being studiously terrible at parenting. What normal father would want Levi “I’m a fuckin’ redneck” Johnson prodding his daughter?

But it is in a column written for the UK’s Guardian that Mallick really outdoes herself.

Canada has lots of hockey moms. They’re called Fran and Nancy. They have cruel haircuts and their voices shake the rafters of the rink as their rink-rats play. How can I translate the hearty, jollying-along Palin for British audiences? She’s a working class Joan Hunter Dunn. It’s those volleyball shoulders and field-hockey thighs, the energy, the bullying, and the utterself-confidence in every lie she tells.

And then a classy shot at Alaskans.

We love our own north to the point of covering our eyes and humming as it melts (yesterday the BBC headlined the collapse of Canada’s ice shelves; Canadian papers and websites missed the story) but Alaska is different from our north. We share a 1,500-mile border with a frontier state full of drunks and crazy people, of the blight that cheap-built structures bring to a glorious landscape. Canadian firms invest billions in the place and mine its ores. One hundred thousand Canadians visit Alaska every year, and we like to pass by in cruise ships. But it never goes further than that. Alaska is our redneck cousin, our Yukon territory forms a blessed buffer zone, and thank God he never visits. Alaska is the end of the line.

If we are seeing this level of hate (and from a Canadian commentator no less) at this stage of the U.S. election process, I can only imagine the foulness that will spew forth should the McCain/Palin ticket prevail on November 4th, 2008.

George Jonas has an amusing and possibly spot-on anaysis as to why this is so.


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