Sarah Palin, Centerfold

My column at First Things. You know I can’t stand it when people get stupidly unfair and abusive:

American’s sad ideological balkanization is most obviously exposed for the sickness it is whenever this woman’s name is mentioned. Thanks to cable news and the social media echo-chambers that invite us to pledge allegiance to a stark perspective and then hiss “enemy” at anyone who thinks differently, Americans are being conditioned to absorb The Daily Outrage on cue; we are one nation, quite divided, with reactionary hyperventilation for all.

And if the nation is becoming addicted to hysteria porn, its centerfold is Sarah Palin.

I know this because of a Facebook thread begun by a friend. She had linked without comment to Newsweek’s latest Palin cover—a rather unflattering, harshly-lit image of the former governor, arms akimbo and wearing the sort of shapeless and unmemorable henley hoodie that women wear when they’re running to the grocer’s and don’t much care how they look.

The very first comment on the picture—from a “liberal” who might be supposed to know better than to objectify women and whom, one presumes, considers himself a free-thinker—went like this: HAHAHAHHAAAAA Keep flashing those boobs, Sarah!

You can read the rest, here! And leave a comment. I expect there will be heated exchanges.

The Hotness Gap?

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