Outing the Sarah Haters: Ralph Peters on Palin, Faith, and Fear

The sneering condescension dripping off the lowered reading glasses of ABC’s Charlie Gibson during his series of interviews with John McCain’s VP running mate Sarah Palin this week was obvious, typical, and despicable. ABC should be embarassed – but, of course, they’re not.

What has made Governor Palin such an object of utter revulsion in the eyes of American liberal Democrats? And why has the Canadian reaction to her been even more vicious – not only by the usual suspects like the miserable, angry “feminist” Heather Mallick , but by normally-reasonable Margaret Wente, who trashes her as part of a bizarre column that proudly retreats into shallow anti-Americanism by glorifying the fact that our Canadian elections are vapid and meaningless?

Col. Ralph Peters, the excellent, biting columnist for the New York Post, identifies the source of the hatred: the secular urban elites’ contempt for, and fear of, people who actually, truly, deeply, spiritually, on a day-to-day basis, in theory AND in practice, believe in God. A great column, worth a full read: “Why Our Elites Fear Faith”, Ralph Peters, New York Post, September 12, 2008:

NOTHING in recent memory has driven home the divide between our self-appointed aristocracy and “commoners” as sharply as the intelligentsia’s rush to mock Gov. Sarah Palin’s religious faith.

While the attacks and insults are backfiring on the mortified elites, the double standard applied to “Sarah America” is a disgrace that can’t be excused as “just politics.”

Certainly, much of the left-wing fury over Palin stems from the Democratic Party’s assumption that it “owned” the exclusive right to nominate women to the executive branch (despite the crushing of Hillary Clinton’s candidacy). How dare the Republicans advance a woman? How dare they change this year’s election script?

But the root of the left’s dread of this happily married mother of five seems to be that she actually believes in God: How could anyone be that stupid?

Washington fears faith – even nominal believers inside the Beltway have been shaped by secular educations and secular caste values.

Humans fear what they can’t understand, and our comfortable ruling class just can’t comprehend the power and the glory, the beauty and the ecstasy, the awe and commitment experienced by those who believe in a divine power. To paraphrase the late Leona Helmsley, “Faith is for the little people.”

Believers are mocked (if not too publicly at election time). Sen. Barack Obama‘s behind-closed-doors remark in San Francisco to the effect that worried blue-collar chumps cling to God and guns perfectly captured the left’s worldview, equating faith and firearms as equal menaces to an enlightened society.

I don’t see extremism in Palin’s faith. I see the love of God that prevails beyond the Beltway. The media’s bigotry toward her tells us far more about the political biases and snobbery of journalists than it does about Sen. John McCain’s running mate.

In recent years, a succession of pundits has compared our country to ancient Rome. Most of the assertions are silly. But our governing elite certainly shares the Roman patricians’ disdain for the faith of the common citizen.



Filed under Anti-Americanism, The Anti-God Left, Understanding the Left-Right Divide

9 responses to “Outing the Sarah Haters: Ralph Peters on Palin, Faith, and Fear

  1. Terry

    My co-workers and I just love her (a bunch of Canadian women). The thing with the media and bloggers on the left is: they’re turning the noise so loud and extreme over Palin that I think most people are just tuning it out now. It’s just too much and too unreasonable and in fact ‘feels like’ they’re picking on her.

    I didn’t see the whole interview with Charlie Gibson but the clips I saw made *me* uncomfortable. There wasn’t a positive vibe coming from him and I found myself cringing for her.

    One thing I’ve been thinking about lately though is how does our Canadian media compare to the U.S.? Since last year I sensed Anderson Cooper was rooting for Obama (just how he always remarked/reacted to Obama issues during discussions). The rest of them are blatant in their bias. I haven’t noticed this with our media but I do mainly watch U.S. mainstream news (CNN).

    I read an article somewhere awhile ago that the “socialist left” has taken over the media and the education system and many positions of power in the government in the U.S. If professors are grooming young minds for socialist ideals and the media is feeding those same ideals, what type of U.S. culture will we see in about two decades? I wonder if it will be recognizable?

  2. virgomonkey

    Usually when I butt heads with a Canuck it’s the other way around. It is not very often I meet Canadian supporters of US Conservative politics!

    Ha! I am against Palin, though, and voting for Obama. 🙂

    I am anti-anti-Americanism, however. With that said, you might like my blog.

  3. Eclipse

    Sadly, no, American liberals do not fear faith- they fear stupidity. Liberals don’t care if you’re a Christian, Muslim or Jew. They care if you don’t have any political skill or knowledge- at least if you’re running for the second most powerful position in the West .

    Sarah Palin is a Christian- so what?

    She also doesn’t know (1) anything about foreign policy (2) what the Bush Doctrine is and (3) what the VP does. She also threatened to go to war with Russia.

    That’s stupidity- no religious bones about it.

  4. So Eclipse, let me get this straight: it doesn’t bother you that Sarah Palin belongs to an Evangelical church, prays to God for success in Iraq, believes abortion is murder in the eyes of God, and believes America has a special Godly mission? But it is unforgiveable that she didn’t answer Charlie Gibson’s condescending pop-quiz to perfection. For some reason, I don’t believe you for a second.

    Something tells me that, if she was a pro-abortion Democrat running for VP, you would be crying to the ends of the earth that the “Bush Doctrine” could mean about a half-dozen things, and that it was Charlie Gibson who was the stupid one.

  5. Eclipse

    If you pay enough attention to American politics- it’s clear that the Bush Doctrine is a very specific thing. And it’s damn important she know what it is- because it’s what he used to justify invading Iraq. There’s no excuse for that- and if she were a pro-choice Dem, we’d be shaking our heads in embarassment, just as the Republicans did.

    And no, I don’t care about her faith. I really don’t- that’s a big ol’ myth that conservatives like to cling to- that Dems hate God or whatever. That’s just plain false. Most democrats- most Americans- have strong religious beliefs.

    The problem occurs when Palin and her ilk refuse to address real concerns of America because they use their faith as a cover or an excuse. Against teaching comprehensive sex-ed because God doesn’t want teenagers to have sex? I don’t care what your beliefs are- the fact is that teenagers are getting pregnant.

    Think that God wanted us to invade Iraq? Fine- but how does that get us OUT of there?

    Against abortion? Fine- let’s figure out ways to keep them from being necessary in the first place.

    You can get indignant and tell me what I think or don’t think again. It’s your blog, I don’t care.
    But crying that Dems are against Palin because we’re against religion is a load of crap. We’re against Palin because she’s inexperienced and supports a horribly failed regime. It’s not personal- it’s political.

  6. Philanthropist

    Eclipse: you’re too funny, but that’s an old schtick, try honesty.

    The most hilarious thing is that ‘feminists’ hate Palin.

  7. Eclipse

    Why is that funny? Feminism isn’t about liking every woman just because she has two X chromosomes- it’s about believing that women deserve the same rights and respect as men. Feminists don’t hate Palin- they hate her politics.

    Again, you keep trying to make this personal when it’s actually political.

    Seriously- if you want to think I’m a big fat liar for telling you that I don’t care about Palin’s religion, I can’t stop you. But you seem to be really emotionally attached to this idea that I “hate” you. It’s like you want to play the victims. I’m simply saying that Palin is a bad choice for America because she lacks diplomacy skills, foreign policy experience, defense experience and is against basic human rights.

    I am FOR religious freedom- ALL religions.
    I am also for the separation of church and state, just like the Constitution says.

    But hey, you’re bent on crying over my supposed bigotry, so game on.

  8. K MacGregor

    I think there’s a very specific fear of a person in a position of great power having a strong religion, not just religion in general. While it’s true that religion is generally a thing most often found in the uneducated and particularly in developing countries (such as strong Islamic religion in Pakistan, Afghanistan, etc.) there isn’t necessarily a direct correlation between level of education and religious beliefs. However, religion, by its nature, tells people what they ought to think, and therefore defines the people whom it encompasses. And, some religions advocate intolerance of others, a major problem. (In Christianity, this ultimately depends on how closely you choose to obey the instructions of the Bible or whether you choose to selectively ignore some). Separation of church and state is therefore of the utmost importance for a leader to avoid inflicting their personal religious beliefs upon other people who do not share their religion. The U.S. has an enormous and devout Christian population compared to other developed countries, and so much of the electorate wouldn’t mind, but there are obviously atheists, Muslims, etc. who are not keen on being represented as Christians. Bush is a failure in this regard – consider his comments that his invasion of Iraq was a mission of God, who, of course, is not necessarily the god his victims believe in, and of course who is not believed in at all by many voters back home. I imagine people are particularly wary after having recently had a religious zealot in charge of the most powerful country in the world and would like to not repeat that mistake.

    Also, left-wing people don’t tend to get along with religious people not precisely because they are religious, but because religious people tend to be right-wing, with beliefs such as “gay people are evil and will burn in hell”, “women who have abortions are evil and will burn in hell”, “birth control is evil and those who use it should burn in hell”, “a woman’s purpose in life is to pump out babies like there’s no tomorrow”, etc. Of course, that’s not true of all religious people (as stated before, dependent upon how much of the bible you accept and how much you choose to ignore, and also which version you use and whether you believe religion can be modified over time to suit societal changes, e.g. progressive Christianity), but as a general rule the beliefs of those who follow organized Christianity, Islam, etc. and the beliefs of those who don’t think there’s any such thing as God tend to clash.

  9. ReaoftheNorth

    MacGregor and Eclipse, you can try to carry the “we’re OK with faith” bucket, but it’s leaking, and badly. Your posts drip with contempt, sarcasm and bigotry for anyone who doesn’t fit a progressive definition of faith: some religion, but not too much, amorphous, formless and gutless. You may really believe that Christians are what you say, but your remarks, especially MacGregor’s reek of bigotry. Religion is “generally … found in the uneducated”; “because religious people tend to be right-wing”; and then listing a set of beliefs which are only held by a few, very few very extreme so-called Christians. Adding the weak disclaimer “that’s not true of all religious” is like any bigot saying, well, not all (fill in offensive ethnic term) are that way, but…

    Try moving beyond the shrieking talking heads and snotty media pundits and actually ask someone of faith what they believe. You’d probably box me in as a conservative, but guess what? I’m pro-life, but would not and do not support overturning Roe v Wade, pro-traditional marriage, but would dearly love to see civil unions legal in my state; I trust profoundly, deeply, passionately in Christ, but I would state toe-to-toe for the religious rights of Muslim, Buddhist, atheist as fellow citizens, and because my conservative faith calls me to stand for the dignity and worth of every human being. My fam and friends are Lutherans (of all kinds), Baptists, Methodists (all kinds), RC, ‘Pisky, Calvinists and among them all are gay (some conservative) and straight (liberal), and not one has ever, ever proclaimed that anybody was going to hell. Ever.

    Sarah Palin has more executive experience in government, so it can’t really be her inexperience. A woman who dares to be a mom and a governor? A woman who chooses not to abort her Down Syndrome baby? A Christian who dares, dares to make no apology for her faith? And she’s beautiful, happily married to a man? Horrors! How dare she!!We’re not crying over your bigotry – we’re just not going to be nice about intolerance, or wear your hair shirt labels.

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