Now when critics pounded Governor Palin's parenting skills, brother-in-law trooper firing drama, mishandling of the Katie Couric interview, etc., Republicans circled the wagons and tried to put up a pretense-defense on her behalf. But, she may have stepped-over-the line during a recent campaign stop, when the feisty, maverick Governor veered off-message and made the following statement that continues to raise eyebrows of some moderates in the GOP:
"Someone called me a redneck woman once and you know what I said back? I said, ‘Why thank you.’” [Gov. Sarah Palin, October 22, 2008; Ohio]The governor really has some 'splainin' to do regarding that bold comment. In some circles, the very term 'redneck' is considered offensive. It is no secret that Americans characterize 'rednecks' as being hicks, uneducated, yahoos, backward thinkers... and not particularly accepting or fond of Blacks and other minorities. Is that really the description the Republican Vice-Presidential nominee wants the electorates to have of her? The hockey mom Palin needs to explain further what about-being a 'redneck' she finds complimentary to the degree she would respond by saying "thank-you".
With less than two weeks remaining in this very divisive, polarizing, culture war-like political environment called the 2008 Presidential election... enquiring minds want to know was Palin's 'redneck' statement some type of 'code message' she was signaling to other "wanna-be" rednecks that she, too, is one of them? What exactly did she mean?
Her statement is particularly troubling, as over the past few months Senator McCain has been trying to tamp-down racial and ethnic slurs within this hard-fought contest. McCain recognizes that divisive rhetoric such as this have a potential to threaten major clashes between the races by, or on, election day... especially depending on this year's outcome.
Unfortunately, boastful comments by Palin of being proud to be a 'redneck' woman, goes against the McCain brand and message. She needs to put a sock in it!