Will Stewing

Renee Rosenow

Elections 2008

1. I can’t stand Obama’s television ad that uses McCain’s inability to e-mail as proof that he is out of touch.

I’m quite sure there are no computers in the Oval Office, and this may come as a shock to college students, but diplomacy isn’t conducted via Facebook.

(“Oh my gosh! Ahmadinejad’s status is . ‘refining Uranium in Iran!’ I’m un-friending him!”). Even if McCain wanted to make a Facebook group for his Cabinet, it is his war injuries that prevent him from using the computer.

Criticizing physical limitations is heinous, criticizing those acquired in a prisoner-of-war camp is beyond description.

Besides, haven’t Americans learned that politics and computers don’t mix? An investigation into the controversial firing of eight federal attorneys was brought to a halt because critical e-mails were “accidentally” deleted. Congressman Mark Foley used his computer skills to have risqué chat conversations with interns. Just last week, Gov. Palin’s e-mail account was hacked and her personal e-mails are now circulating all over the internet. Finally, could you imagine what the Wiktionary (Wikipedia’s dictionary) would look like if George Bush had access to a computer? I, for one, don’t have a problem with McCain’s lack of computer skills.

2. I have a problem with this whole “hockey mom” thing surrounding Palin. As a former hockey player, I’ve known many hockey moms and during games they leave their transposed, polite selves and seem to enter an altered state of mind that involves a rabid anger towards anything that threatens the safety of their kids.

It doesn’t really matter if it is a good call or not, they’ll have an emotional reaction to it. Does anybody seriously think being a hockey mom as the potential vice president is a positive thing? If hockey moms, or dads for that matter, had been in charge of our nuclear arsenal during the Cold War, the Olympic Winter Games would have resulted in nuclear winter.

Canada, Sweden, Norway, Finland – all big hockey countries – don’t have nuclear weapons, possibly because they recognize the danger of mixing hockey parents with nuclear weapons.

3. Although the Republican Party and McCain have criticized such tactics, some conservative bloggers continue to spotlight Barack Obama’s middle name and use it to suggest that he is a Muslim or that he was sworn into Congress on the Koran.

The effectiveness of these falsehoods is a testament to the stupidity of some Americans and, more embarrassingly, it reveals that our country still has its share of intolerant people (well, at least they can type, right?).

The ability to work well with others is an important quality in today’s difficult job market, but bigots need not fear, there is a job market in demand of people with weak, intolerant minds and some technology skills – it is called terrorism.

4. “Family is off limits,” was Sen. Barack Obama’s response to the news that Bristol Palin, the 17 year old daughter of Gov. Sarah Palin, was pregnant. I respectfully disagree for this simple reason: abstinence-only sexual education.

Both Palin and McCain support abstinence-only sexual education, and have supported education that promotes it. There is a lot of evidence that such education doesn’t discourage, delay or reduce sexual education and only increases the likelihood that sex will result in disease transmission, pregnancy or both.

“Abstinence-only” proponents assert that parents are a critical part of a child’s sexual education and I agree. Most parents are concerned with the well-being and happiness of their children and see unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases as a threat and so they talk to their kids about sex.

When and if Gov. Palin ever talked to her daughter about sex, she did it as a parent, but also as a politician that supports “abstinence-only.” If Gov. Palin failed, what hope is there for the children of parents that might not care as much, or at all?

Stewart is a senior elementary education major and a columnist for The Spectator. “Will Stewing” appears every Monday.