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12th-Sep-2008 11:45 am
Got a link to John McCain's Skeleton Closet, and it struck me as silly in the same way this article did from the National Enquirer editor (though published in the Wall Street Journal). There is a certain "tone deafness" that affects each author.

Taking the second first, he says:

In this fractious environment, politics has made for more than strange bedfellows. Witness Mr. McCain greeting Levi Johnston and quickly becoming buddies with the 18-year-old hockey player who impregnated the daughter of his running mate.

Mr. McCain presumably did not have a copy in his pocket of the recently adopted platform of the Republican Party, which contained within its instructive gospel of morality and values: "We renew our call for replacing 'family planning' programs for teens with increased funding for abstinence education, which teaches abstinence until marriage as the responsible and expected standard of behavior. . . . We oppose school-based clinics that provide referrals, counseling, and related services for abortion and contraception."

Witness Mr. McCain acting well, Mr. Johnston acting like a grownup, and the platform of the Republican party calling for more responsibility for teens, not less -- and the editor evidently unable to understand the connection. That particular fight is one the Republicans would love to see fought, since they would win it handily, much to the confusion of the editor.

The Skeleton Closet tries to make a similar point:

Suddenly, in September 2007, he's campaigning in South Carolina, the heavily Baptist state where George W. Bush barely managed to stop McCain's presidential campaign 8 years ago. And guess what? McCain tells a reporter "By the way, I'm not Episcopalian. I'm Baptist."

When pressed, he said he's attended the North Phoenix Baptist Church in Arizona for more than 15 years, though he has never been baptized in that church. Now see, that's exactly the problem. Baptism is kind of a big thing in the Baptist Church. (That's how they got the name.) No baptism, not Baptist.

Talk about a pencil without a point. Why should I care?

Then there's the "Keating Five" assertion: McCain was one of them. Yep. He was. And, while not convicted of anything, he did decide that ethics and campaign reform were going to be his issues after that -- and he's been working on them since. How long ago was that, again?

"birthday regards" to Joe Bananas surely makes him corrupt and a Mafia member, right? Again, this is a pencil with no point, and needs no erasing from me.

Silliness. Really, folks.
13th-Sep-2008 08:19 am (UTC) - Voice in the wilderness
I'm with my left-wing friends in thinking that abstinence education is a crock. Of course, I also think that teen sex-education is equally misguided; a sop to salve the consciences of the adult delinquents.

Now mandatory parent sex ed; that, I could get behind. It would involve things like spending time with your teenager, knowing his or her friends, "how to empower your teen to resist sexual predators or the merely pushy; etc. etc. etc.

Ah well, pigs will fly first, I suppose.
13th-Sep-2008 01:34 pm (UTC) - Re: Voice in the wilderness
I've always found middle-aged men worried about teen sex education creepy.

Sometimes the crock works. Sometimes it doesn't. Generally, I've known men and women for whom anything would have worked, and ones for whom lifelong battles with STDs were part of life.

The point, as always, is not that people are either perfect or perfectible: but learning how to get up after you fall down, how to avoid at least a few of the banana peels on the path, and how to keep moving anyway, is worth it. That leads to Mr. Johnson's choice, and, from my perspective, he made the right one. Will it work out? Flip the same coin we would have flipped anyway, and see the comment about perfect and perfectible.
15th-Sep-2008 03:15 am (UTC) - Re: Ahhh.... (now with final edits in*)
I should've known.

The left is lumping the at-risk-teen/pre-teen programs in with abstince-based sex ed. The latter, of course, is just sex-ed with abstinence instead of condoms.

The former often works. I'm on a city council commission working on a similar program for our local kids.

Lies, d--d lies, and statistics left-wing reporters...

(*I promise.)

Edited at 2008-09-15 03:16 am (UTC)
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