Sarah Palin’s political action committee (SarahPAC) recently released a video intended to stir conservative women to action. In “Mama Grizzlies,” Palin likens conservative women, specifically women who are mothers, to the mother grizzly bear. Suggesting that the U.S. is heading in an ominous direction (my word, not Palin’s), she contends that a “mom awakening” is taking place. You see, in Palin’s view, “moms kinda just know when something is wrong” and can tell when something/someone is going to “attack their cubs.” And, according to Palin, you “don’t wanna mess with the mama grizzlies.”
What?! So, if we’re to read between the lines, which is a necessity when it comes to Palin and her preference for hyperbole and euphemisms rather than concrete ideas, we see that the country is under attack by liberals and their “fundamental transformation” of this country (the latter seems like a pretty good thing to me). In order to protect their children and grandchildren and this great nation, conservative women (who all must be mothers, if we’re following the call to all “mama grizzlies”) are going to need to band together (like a herd of elephants) to ensure that politicians “respect the will of the people.”
Oy vey. Here are some of my major concerns:
1. Palin only respects the “will of the people” when it matches her ideology. Apparently the fact that Obama won the majority vote doesn’t actually reflect the will of the people.
2. Look at the people featured in the film. These “mothers” Palin speaks of are almost exclusively white women. Again, the will of the people apparently only applies to certain people.
3. Palin seems to presume that conservative women are all mothers, and that all mothers have “natural” instincts and always make decisions based upon the well-being of their children and grandchildren. Because, once a mother, that becomes a woman’s most defining identity. Eek.
4. Her reliance on the animal kingdom to connect with her supporters is expanding from infamous pit bull in lipstick references to the mama grizzly, while ending on the note of a “whole stampede of pink elephants” storming Washington. The animal jargon is belittling and offensive. Give people a reason to vote for you, not messages that make them feel defensive and urge them to live in fear of unnamed threats.
This video doesn’t surprise me, though it does irritate me. With that said, since I’ve clearly pulled a few quotes from the video, it may seem like I’m not fairly or fully representing Palin’s message. However, if you watch the video (only a minute and fifty seconds), the entire thing is filled with this mother bear jargon and little else. I’d challenge Palin to start using the SarahPAC dollars a little more effectively. Perhaps it’s time to communicate what the Republican Party will do and how it will differ from Democratic leadership, rather than treating supporters as defensive, reactive people who operate solely on animal instincts instead of informed logic.