Friday, October 3, 2008

Insulting My Intelligence

I refuse to believe that Americans are as stupid as politicians and the media believe they are. I had my definite opinions about Biden and Palin's performance last night during the VP debate, but I was interested to know what the political pundits had to say. True to form, Democratic sympathizers thought Biden did great and Republican sympathizers thought Palin did a good job. Many (not so many Republicans) admitted that expectations were so low for Palin that, of course, a gaffe-free performance would be like a home run. But really, is that all it takes to be outstanding?

I was insulted that I was supposed to accept Palin's evasive and rehearsed answers and arrogant refusal to respond to the moderator as a stellar performance. Have the standards for American excellence become so low that one does not have to do well, they only have to not mess up, for us to accept it as a win? Do the "people in the know" expect so little of Americans that we are to accept mediocrity as excellence?

These low expectations of Americans are also revealed in the assertions that Biden did not do well because he was too professorial. Like they said of Obama at the Saddleback forum, his answers were too nuanced and therefore would not resonate well with the American public. So, are they saying that Americans are too stupid to understand that life's situations are not always black and white, easily characterized by a catchy slogan? Do they not have enough faith in the American public to believe that they realize that life is complicated?
Maybe they don't think much of America's intellect, but, my goodness, give us a little credit.

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