As I was watching Governor Palin’s family parade onto the stage after her speech at the convention, it came to mind that the coverage of Palin and her daughter seem to be completely different than that of the coverage of Edwards.
The governor’s family will have a few challenges over the next few years with a young pregnant daughter and a down syndrome newborn. Some members of the press insist on questioning Palin’s ability to be both a Vice President and a mother with great responsibility. They ask if she can devote the necessary time to her daughter and son and still fulfill her duties.
Now let’s look back a few months to Edwards’ announcement of his wife’s cancer. After announcing that his wife was diagnosed with terminal cancer, there were some of us that questioned Mr. Edwards’ judgment to stay on the campaign trail. Questions came to mind of whether he would be able to govern while his wife is fighting to survive in her final months and whether he would be able to govern while raising his children with no mother. Family oriented individuals may have asked why he would not want to spend as much time as possible with his family during this difficult time. The mainstream press chastised those of us that asked these questions.
Why the different treatment? Is it because Sarah Palin is running for Vice President? The last I looked the position of President is much more important to the country yet the press showed little concern. Is it because she is a woman, a mother? I certainly hope that an educated press full of liberated women would not hold her motherhood against her. Is it because her spouse will live through her term, if she is elected, to help parent their family? Well that would make no sense. If Senator Edwards wife would pass away sooner rather than later from her unfortunate illness, he would no longer have such family support to raise their children.
So why oh why is the press treating these situations differently? I do not think that question really requires an answer, but the bias is overwhelming.
Now this may be unnecessary to say as well, but here it goes. Now that we know more about the Edwards situation, this raises a even bigger concern. Sarah Palin is governing a state, caring for a 4 month old disabled child, and supporting her daughter. Former Senator Edwards was having an affair while his wife was recovering from cancer treatment. Where should the concern lie? Surely not with Governor Palin’s ability to support her family while governing.