Palin's dangerous rhetoric, McCain's tolerance thereof

Palin's ignorance and lack of qualifications to be our Vice President, let alone President, are a source of both humor and horror, but now that she's been set loose to fan the flames of racism with unsubstantiated rhetoric, I can't look at her without recoiling in anger and disgust. For McCain to tolerate the types of things Palin is saying at campaign stops these days is to ensure that the last thing people remember about his legacy, once he loses this election, is the turn towards the darkside.

I see video of people holding up signs saying that Obama is a Muslim even though he is easily proven not (with all due respect to Muslims, the term is not a slur, though the Republicans have no qualms about using it that way), or equating him to Osama bin Laden and a terrorist, and I mourn for the death of reason. More than that, I fear what some ignorant loonies might do, their passions stirred up by Palin on the campaign trail through her reprehensible wielding of innuendo and slurs. She's an amateur playing with Molotov cocktails, and it needs to stop.

A sample of writing from others on this topic...

George Packer in The New Yorker:

What’s undeniably true is that Republican rallies and the incendiary language of party leaders are stirring up the darker, destructive mob passions that have a long history in American politics. At the very least, the Republican ticket is making sure that, if Obama wins, he’ll be regarded as an illegitimate and dangerous President by thirty or forty per cent of the country.

Palin is too shallow to understand the weapon she’s playing with; she’s just thrilled to be the birthday girl and the object of so much semi-erotic devotion. But McCain knows better. His manner in debates and at rallies tells me that he’s conflicted about the forces his campaign is unleashing. Win or lose, he’s already damaged his cherished reputation beyond repair. But there’s still time for him to show leadership and do what’s necessary. The responsibility lies with him. In his speeches and at the final debate next week, McCain should say: “Barack Obama is a decent man and a good American. I deplore his policies, I doubt his judgment, I don’t think he has the experience to lead the country. But no one who supports me should question my opponent’s patriotism or his right to stand alongside me in this race. I would rather lose than win with the votes of fear-mongers or bigots.