Relax. This isn't really political, except in the broadest sense.
Lots of ugly sexism out there. I've heard about the insulting T-shirts, but my focus is different.
I think it's fascinating the subtle, or not too subtle forms, that sexism can take, even from Gov. Palin's supporters. This stuff didn't happen to Hilary Clinton. Perhaps Sarah Palin attracts it because she's young and very pretty. Here's what I've noticed.
1. At the debate, when asked about his running mate, Senator McCain said he was proud of her. A little paternalistic, maybe?
2. Last week there was a flap about the un-retouched cover photo on Newsweek, which was supposedly evidence of the magazine's partisanship. (Never mind that the text of one of the articles clearly stated a point of view. Words are too difficult to read, perhaps.) Is Gov. Palin running for Vice-President or for Ms. America? Calling attention to the supposedly unflattering photo as though it were important is the insulting thing, not the photo itself.
3. And finally the most important thing: If, as seems likely now, Obama wins, Sarah Palin will sink into obscurity outside of Alaska. She's clearly an attractive, even charismatic figure to those who like her ideas, and she's done some good things as governor. But by pulling her into the national spotlight before she's ready to handle it, John McCain hasn't done her a favor. Quite the opposite, I would guess. What he has done is use her for his own purposes, apparently to "energize the base" and enliven his campaign. By doing so, he has made her such a target of ridicule from the left and an object of scorn for "intellectual" Republicans, many of whom will blame her for McCain's defeat, that any chance at a national political future is unlikely. So a man takes advantage of a woman. It's a new twist on an old story.
Maybe events will prove me wrong on this, but that's the role of the pundit, right?