I didn’t get to see the Sarah Palin interview on Sean Hannity’s show last night, so I had the misfortune of reading the reviews before seeing the actual interview.
You will be shocked to learn that the reviews by the left-wing and supposedly moderate blogs bear little relationship to reality. I can’t help but wonder whether these people actually watched the interview, or simply projected their own imagined conclusions.
I now have viewed the interview (via Right Scoop), and Palin did very well. If Palin were a liberal Democrat, she would be receiving accolades in the mainstream media.
Palin started out the interview with a discussion of how the focus should have been on the dead and injured, and how she wishes them well. The interview then went into the details about how her husband Todd almost immediately after the shooting began receiving calls from the mainstream media for Palin to comment due to the (false) allegations that Palin’s electoral target map inspired shooter Jared Loughner.
The most interesting segment was in the middle when Hannity went through a litany of threats against Palin and vile statements regarding Palin dating back to 2008. So much for Obama supporters’ “civil discourse.” Palin also mentioned how not only she, but also her children, have received death threats.
Palin cannot just ignore the obvious libel against her. That is the strategy pursued by the Bush administration in the face of false accusations that Bush “lied us into war.” We saw how that strategy of silence worked.
There is not a shred of evidence to date that Loughner ever saw Palin’s electoral map, yet 56% of Democrats (and 35% of people overall) believe that the map was connected to the Tucson shooting.
This puts Palin in an impossible position, one faced by many people who are falsely accused.
If Palin does not defend herself vigorously, the silence is taken as acquiescence and an implicit admission of guilt. If she does defend herself, she is criticized for making the issue about her and she further spreads the defamatory accusations (so-called “self-publication”).
One last point. Did some of Palin’s harshest critics even watch the interview? I think not, because one of the story lines is that Palin did not acknowledge in the interview the historical meaning of the term “blood libel,” but Palin clearly did (see the last video segment at Right Scoop, starting at 0:45):
“The historical knowledge that people have of the term blood libel it goes back to the Jews who were falsely accused back in medieval European times of using the blood of children ….”
Palin is correct to fight back forcefully against people for whom the truth about the Tucson shooting is just a set of inconvenient facts to be ignored for a false political narrative.
If Palin did not fight back, the slanderers and defamers surely would win. The truth may not prevail here because of the strength of the Democratic message machine, but it is worth fighting for.