Mr. Kleinheider has written an extensive post on how the Left is likely to fall in its response to the revelation that Bristol Palin, Sarah Palin's teenage daughter, is pregnant.
Sarah Palin did nothing “wrong.” And Bristol Palin did nothing other than sin, which we all do. She is now managing her sin as proscribed by tradition. To the traditionalist the situation is not ideal, no, but it is not a disaster.
Few on the Left will be willing to admit they got the interpretation of these events wrong. Sara Whitman is one of the few exceptions. There will be a continuing barrage of blog posts that we need science-based sex education and righteous comments that abstinence education is not enough. There will be calls for greater access to contraception. Right issues, wrong time.
I see the next several weeks as a time when the Left will continue to misfire on sexuality and gender. Just this weekend, I got an email from a popular radio show calling Sarah Palin a "beauty queen." Not only will these tactics not dispirit the Right, they will not move the Center, and they contravene the best traditions of the Left.
If the Left believes, and there is some doubt about this after the monstrous attacks on Hillary Clinton in the "progressive" blogosphere and on MSNBC, that women are complex human beings who should be given an equal shot at weilding political power, then why on earth did the worst epithets--witch, bitch, etc.--come from the Left? And given those beliefs, how can you reduce an elected, popular governor of a state to her past role as a pageant contestant? How embarrassing for you!
For those on the Left who trace their ideology from a secularist strain in the Enlightenment, it is perhaps unfathomable that the concepts of sin and redemption are anything but a confinement. What their comments this week, in fact, show is that they have retained sin in the form of talk about hypocrisy but jettisoned redemption. The answer to the sin of your opponent is revenge or schadenfreude.
As Kleinheider points out, Barack Obama can and will probably handle this situation honorably, but it may not matter if his progressive defenders continue with their witch hunt. He has repeated, "People's families are off limits." And he's right. He's right morally and he's right politically. This is not a winning issue for the Left. When encountering the personal drama of sin and redemption in a family, the words of an ancient liturgy are apt:
Let all mortal flesh keep silence, And with fear and trembling stand.