Silver Chips Online

Let the battle begin

By Alisa Lu, Online News Editor and Kevin Teng, Online News Editor
October 6, 2008
Silver Chips Online has decided to implement blogging, a new feature that is intended to improve participation and interest in our publication. Every other week or so, two opinions on one topic will be written. Everyone is entitled to make their own opinions, so Silver Chips Online will recognize and appreciate of all of them; we expect you all as readers to do the same. The exchange of opinions creates a forum for discussion for students, a fancy saying for, "WE WANT YOUR OPINION." Do comment - fight, argue, agree and support. We want your ideas, but at the same time, we do not want any slander or personal attacks. Please remember that the clearest, most cohesive and decisive arguments will help us understand not only others, but ourselves.

In the news section, Silver Chips Online will write about our thoughts on current events. The events could be anything - humorous, serious or mysterious. We just want to write about things that can get you all involved. Right now, we are assuming that politics forms the common interest to the Blair community, especially in light of the upcoming elections. But if you all ever want us to write about something else, feel free to let us know.

We understand that the Blair demography consists mainly of liberal students, teachers and parents, but Silver Chips Online will aim to eliminate that majority - at least in its own writing. Our very own SCO News Editor Kevin Teng will be blogging from the left, while the other SCO News Editor Alisa Lu will blog from the right.

Alisa's blog: Well, I'd like to start off by saying, as one of the few vocal Republicans in this school (or perhaps only vocal Republican in this school... or perhaps only Republican), please don't automatically stick a target on my back. Not all female Republicans are pit bulls with lipstick. And now onto the topic that has everyone ready for battle: Sarah Palin. To Democrats, she's the Spawn of Satan (or Bush). To Republicans, she's God's gift to the Republican Party. For the past few weeks, the Palin factor has eclipsed the debate of all major issues, but the economy has once again taken center stage thanks to the wonderful institutions named Lehman Brothers and AIG.

But I digress. A few months ago, I was one of many young Republicans in this country when I thought the future looked bleak for the Grand Old Party, emphases on old. We had a presidential nominee, who, while certainly qualified, was not exactly the most energizing, exciting or unifying candidate. But along came Palin, with her cute shoes and fashionable hairstyle, who has completely revitalized the party and given new energy to the McCain campaign. In addition, she has made the media completely forget about some guy named Joe Biden. Like it or not, she has completely changed the campaign.

Also - I'm already preparing for the eye roll - Palin is the second female vice presidential nominee of a major party. Surprising, no? As the hilarious "Saturday Night Live" sketch reminded us, it was Hillary Clinton who was supposed to become the trailblazer even back when Sarah Palin was still the unknown former mayor of Wasilla, Alaska. But while Clinton has divided the Democrats, Palin has united the Republicans, which is incredibly surprising considering that a few months ago, Republicans were as excited about the election as most people are excited about a visit to the dentist. Maybe there is hope this election year, when Democrats are expected to take huge majorities in Congress.

Unfortunately, I do realize that I have yet to hear Palin really talk about the issues and that the Gibson interview didn't exactly cut it. McCain chose Palin for her energy, youthfulness and willingness to attack, and not for her expertise. Personally, I'm split on McCain's choice. I like her energy and her sharp wit but I wish she were more open with the media and the people. All I know is, I would definitely like to hear more about her platform and less about her family.

Kevin's blog: I have to say first that personal attacks should be forbidden. Even though the smear tactic is a staple of both parties, it only serves to make everyone look stupid. It is far more important to attack fundamental ideas backing a candidate's position because those ideas are the ones that govern a candidate's actions if he or she has to answer that phone call at 3 a.m. With that said, we need to look at the big picture rather than small details.

With that said, let's talk about the fundamental position that both sides take on Palin's nomination. The people on the far right see her as a great person - a daring, bold woman who speaks to small-town folk and has strong policies for energy independence (e.g. drilling in U.S. territory). To the far left, she is an ambitious liar who uses her family to promote her image and has no foreign relations experience (e.g. not stepping outside of North America prior to nomination).

I was actually surprised that McCain did not select some of the more powerful hitters with solid experience, such as former Governor Mike Huckabee (R-Ark.), who appeals to moderates with his connectivity rather than his looks. McCain could have also selected former Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R-N.Y.), who often seems more Independent than Republican. But that would be too easy for McCain, who is very far right.

In my opinion, the Palin addition to the Republican ticket was a good move, but a very dangerous one at that. Many voters flocked to the Republican side because Palin represents the hope to break the "glass ceiling," while still being a common mother and wife.

The danger part comes not only from her inflexibility in ideas, but her lack of knowledge. In her interview with Charles Gibson, Palin seemed to know nothing about the world (excluding Alaska). This theme was repeated when she spoke with Katie Couric. Maybe she's just too small-town to be veep of the U.S.



http://silverchips.mbhs.edu/story/8550