I really wish that former Gov. Jane Swift hadn’t called on Obama to “apologize” for the be-lipsticked pig is still a pig line. (For anyone who has been living without electricity the for the last day or so, what the Democratic nominee for President said was: “You know, you can put lipstick on a pig but it’s still a pig.” Was this a “mega gaffe“? Maybe it will turn out to be, but I for one hope that the McCain camp gives it a rest. Of course it was a reference to Sarah Palin’s line about the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull was that the hockey mom wore lipstick; and of course Obama intended some of that porcine unpleasantness to rub off on S. Palin, Governor of Alaska. He was doubtless also, I am reliably informed, alluding to the colloquial phrase about putting lipstick on a pig, i.e., “slang for when someone tries to dress something up, but is still that something.” (Alas, this source also goes on to say “usually used on ugly broads, when they put on a skirt and some lipstick and well, they still look like the same disgusting pig.”)
Now, was this politic? Maybe not. Was it smart, given everything we know about racial-sexual-“differently abled”-age-and-health-and-talent-related sensitivities? I’m afraid not. And I have to say, if I were a Democratic strategist, this tone-deafness on the part of my Leader would worry me deeply. I mean, the Democrats are supposed to own all this “You-said-something-mean-and-hurt-my-feelings!-Apologize!” stuff. The American continent gets colonized: sooner or later you’ll find some Democrats who want to apologize to the Indians for that Providential episode. These days, you have to look far and wide to find any nasty episode anywhere unaccompanied by some “offended” group (and their lawyers) demanding an “apology” (with a side of cash, is possible).
I think it is bad form for Republicans to play this silly game. I do not know Sarah Palin. But from what I know of her, I would guess that if she even noticed Obama’s desperate little performance her first, and probably her last, reaction was to laugh. Certainly (I feel sure) she would countenance no whining. Because some jerk as much as called you a pig? Get a life. Still, I would advise Obama not to reprise it when she or her husband was actually in the room. Some loud mouth Harvard-educated twit bloviating to a bunch of losers on TV somewhere is one thing; actually insulting someone to her face is something else entirely. I’m not sure that’s the sort of thing Obama understands, but I bet he would be a quick learner.
In any event, I do hope that Republicans will pass over Obama’s crude remark with the silence it deserves. I don’t say forget about it. On the contrary. But I would hate to see Republicans descend to play the hurt feelings, you’re-so-insensitive game.
Glenn Reynolds has a good round up on the whole sorry episode. He includes a great snippet, via NRO, from Rush Limbaugh that explains why McCain-Palin are going to wipe the floor with “the One They’ve Been Waiting for.” Get a tissue ready before you read it: it’s a tear-jerker.