I also never watch Fox News (see above re: fair and not boring), so I probably would have missed Bernie Goldberg's comments if not for Jon Stewart last night. The topic was Sarah Palin, or more precisely the media reaction to Sarah Palin. The part that jumped out at me came at about 6:15 in the show:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Daily Show: The Rogue Warrior|
If you don't feel like sitting through that, here's the money quote from Mister Goldberg:
"She [Palin] has five kids. Liberals don't have five kids. One of them has Down Syndrome. Liberals certainly don't allow THAT to happen."
So let me strip this of politics for a moment, because I find it equally distasteful when people of any political stripe do this, and I try (with admittedly varying degrees of success, I'm sure, so call me a hypocrite if you like) to avoid doing it myself. But let me just state something that would seem to be torn right from the pages of The Encyclopedia of No Shit.
Families of kids with disabilities are not here to serve as your political talking points.
Whether or not you are a good parent to a child with a disability has nothing to do with your politics. Conservatives have broken children, liberals have broken children, and we all do the best that we can.
Conservative politicians say stupid things ("How does special education, $6 billion dollars, stimulate the economy?" - Sen. John Kyl), and so do liberals (President Obama's idiotic joke about the Special Olympics). If there's one thing I think we can all agree on, it's that neither party has been particularly sensitive to the needs of the disability community, not when it comes to actually doing something besides talking pretty. If you are in public office and your last name isn't "Kennedy", chances are, you haven't done enough to help these kids.
Perhaps I'm just not looking hard enough, but I can't find any information online that suggests that Bernie Goldberg has any particular expertise regarding children with disabilities. I felt pretty confident, therefore, in sending a message to Bernie via Twitter, one that I am absolutely 100% certain will fall on deaf ears.
"Please politicize your own kids, not ours."