ST. PAUL - I have never met a weak woman, or a male victim in Alaska. You've got to be tough to survive in a state that is further away from Washington than any other, except Hawaii. In terms of the contrasts between how most Alaskans think and what passes for reasoning by career politicians in Washington, Alaska might as well be a colony on the moon.
Initial criticism from the Obama campaign (and his media acolytes) is that Gov. Sarah Palin lacks experience to be vice president and, if necessary, president. That Obama lacks experience to be president has led some pundits to say that issue is now a wash, harming neither candidate. Not true.
There is good and there is bad experience. More importantly, there is worldview. Obama and his running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, see America as a nation in which government plays a primary role in individual lives. John McCain and Sarah Palin see the individual as primary and government as a protector of freedom that can help the less fortunate become self-sustaining.
One can already sense the lines of attack against Palin. Why did she have a child she knew would be born with Down syndrome? We used to call such children "mentally retarded," before the word "retarded" became an epithet commonly hurled by teenagers. She practices what she preaches about her pro-life views. She had this child because she didn't want to play God.
Speaking of God, Palin is a serious, practicing Christian, unlike some in the Democratic Party who have studied how to manipulate religious language and imagery to dupe some churchgoers into voting for Obama. In contrast to Obama's pastor for 20 years, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who preached hate-filled, anti-American sermons, the sermons at Palin's former church, Wasilla Bible Church (she now attends a church with similar beliefs called Juneau Christian Center), were far more Bible-based and traditional. Sermon titles dealt with personal sin, how to give God joy, assurance of an afterlife and how to get there by serving God and others. The media will go to the church's "statement of faith" and try to paint her as a bigot and exclusionist for believing what Jesus said about Himself and the path to salvation.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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