Home > Uncategorized > Examining the Palin coverage, Friday lab (151)

Examining the Palin coverage, Friday lab (151)

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  1. Kate Veik
    September 8, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    The New York Times ran an article entitled “Fusing Politics and Motherhood in New Way” which really tells it all. The article opens with Sarah Palin rocking her new baby in a rocking chair while her family and friends present her with food and presents. It is a baby shower. A few paragraphs later, the birth of her new child is connected to the sudden skyrocketing of her career. The photograph that ran with the article is a tight shot of Palin, her husband and their new baby. I think this is absolutely ridiculous. The whole package makes Palin look like a fool who is just tagging along with McCain and his bid for the presidency. (Not that I think mothers are fools. In context of everything that is happening, I think she looks foolish.) I understand the human interest aspect of it but I don’t think I want the woman introduced in the first few paragraphs to help run the country I live in.
    An article in the L.A. Times established that Sarah Palin’s reach falls just short of working-class women, who are the most valuable batch of voters left to win over. The article was interesting because they went straight to the people Palin is supposedly representing. The article quotes hard-working women looking for a change. Some of them saw that change in Hilary Clinton, but not because she was a woman. “”I wanted Hillary to win so bad, but I saw Sarah, and it just didn’t work for me,” said Heckman, taking a break in the empty courtyard of J. Paul’s restaurant in a downtown struggling to revive. “I have no retirement. Obama understands it’s the economy. He knows how we live.”” It is interesting because so many news outlets make it seem like McCain chose Palin because she would bring in those middle-class female votes but it seems to be doing the opposite.
    Now, I’m going to go back to September 2, 2008. The Anchorage Daily News ran two stories loosely about Palin, both above the fold on the front page. The first was about her daughter’s pregnancy and it was accompanied by a painfully misleading photograph of her daughter holding Palin’s newborn son. The second was about the firing scandal. Now, I understand that this is Palin’s home paper. However, I still don’t think it excuses this move. I wouldn’t expect The New York Times to run these stories this large and on the front page because these stories are useless. I understand that some people get hooked by the faux human interest stories but this is just ridiculous. The Anchorage Daily News should hold itself to a higher standard.

  2. Kylie Kinley
    September 9, 2008 at 1:08 am

    When comparing the coverage of Sarah Palin by three news sources, I noticed that all three of my sources spent a considerable, and by my opinion obsessive, amount of column space covering the pregnancy of Palin’s 17-year-old daughter.
    The first newspaper I looked at was The Omaha World Herald. On Tuesday, Sept. 2, the day after the McCain campaign announced the news of Palin’s daughter pregnancy, her husband’s long ago DUI arrest and the state ethic probe involving Palin, the paper ran an Associated Press story with the headline “McCain campaign defends Palin check.” The article mentioned the topics I listed above, but, instead of investigating the ethics probe, which I think is actually the most disturbing bit of news, the article focused entirely on the pregnancy. The Herald tried to redeem this lopsided coverage by another article with the headline “GOP Convention: Republicans hail McCain, party defends Palin.” This article has quotes from former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and Ron Nehring, chairman of the Republican Party of California, detailing Palin’s stand on gun control and other issues.
    The Lincoln Journal Star’s coverage was very similar. The stories were from the Associated Press and covered similar topics. On Wednesday, Sept. 3, the Star had a story with the headline “Palin casts herself as Washington Outsider” that did a very thorough job summarizing Palin’s acceptance speech. I was pleased with the article until half way through, when it mentioned that Palin’s family was in the audience and listed the pregnant daughter and her boyfriend by name. This annoyed me because I do not think that the pregnancy should have anything to do with Palin’s campaign and that mentioning the names of the teenagers in an article devoted to Palin’s speech was completely unnecessary.
    The New York Time’s coverage surprised me the most. The Times was not satisfied with simply stating the pregnancy in the bodies of the articles, but insisted on bringing the issue into its headlines. One headline on Tuesday, Sept. 2 read “Palin Daughter’s Pregnancy Interrupts G.O.P. Convention Script.” This headline was on page A19, but I still thought it was unnecessary to put “pregnancy” in the headline, especially when the article does spend a great deal of space detailing Palin’s political history. The front-page article had the headline “Palin Disclosures Spotlight McCain’s Screening Process,” which I thought was fitting, but the article goes on to describe the ethics probe “among other less attention-grabbing news of the day.” I, however, think an ethics probe is much more attention worthy than the life of Palin’s almost adult daughter.
    In conclusion, I hope that after a week of extensively covering Bristol Palin’s pregnancy, the media will focus on the importance of Sarah Palin’s values, experiences and political clout.

  3. Logan Thompson
    September 11, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    On September 1, a CNN reporter brought up Bristol Palin’s pregnancy. The reporter went on to talk about the teen pregnancy problem in Alaska and said that Sarah Palin favored abstinence-only education. Most of that is valid to at least mention, but what she said about the “investigation” is what worried me. Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gW4QXol1f4U
    It all started, the reporter said, with the rumor on far left-wing blogs that Bristol was actually the mother of Trig Palin and that a massive cover-up/conspiracy was going on. For some reason, CNN thought it necessary to investigate Palin’s family based on this rumor. I think that goes much too far, especially after the McCain campaign and Sarah Palin came right out with the news about Bristol. CNN’s Bill Bennett went on just after this report and gave his own reaction. That video can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUsrTV_DSuc

    Shortly after the announcement of Bristol Palin’s pregnancy was made, the New York Times ran three articles about it on the front page. The articles were “Disclosures on Palin Raise Questions on Vetting Process,” “A New Twist in the Motherhood Debate” and “News Analysis In Political Realm, ‘Family Problem’ Emerges as Test.” I realize that Bristol’s pregnancy is news, but one article is plenty. And three of them on just the front page is extraordinarily excessive… To be clear, all three of the articles mentioned the Palin family but weren’t necessarily all about the family. The NYT just used the Palin story as a springboard to other issues such as motherhood for a working woman.

    Fox News had a panel discussion about coverage of the Palin family. Mort Kondracke brought up the teen pregnancy problem and said that we should look at this situation as a way to think about sex education in schools. Bill Kristol fired back, saying the media has no business doing so. Brit Hume silenced everybody when they tried to speak over each other, adding a paternal, “Bill, your turn.” This panel discussion was one of the few times I saw a good, live back-and-forth about the issue. Both sides made their case (though it was clear that more people were on Bill Kristol’s side than not). For that reason, this was the best coverage I saw (with CNN at a very close second).
    Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8u-IjBchiB4&feature=related

    As somebody mentioned in our lab last week, by discussing whether to talk about these things on the air, the media talks about them. I think it’s time they followed Barack Obama’s advice — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paSh73ulmxo

  4. Charlie Pfister
    September 11, 2008 at 8:00 pm

    I’m going to compare headlines from three different news sources on their coverage of Bristol Palin’s pregnancy.
    A cnn.com article’s headline on the pregnancy stated, “Palin’s teen daughter is pregnant.” I don’t have too much of a problem with this headline as I do with those of many other news sources. This one gets straight to the point in telling of the situation, but I still don’t think the pregnancy ever needed to get as big as it did.
    A New York Times article’s headline on the pregnancy states, “Palin’s Teen Daughter Is Pregnant; New G.O.P. Tumult.” I don’t like this headline at all. I think to say that Palin’s daughter’s pregnancy could hurt the chances of the Republican party isn’t fair, to both Palin and her daughter. And to devote a lengthy article to this situation is just plain ridiulous in my mind.
    And finally, one of the most unnecessary article headlines I could find on the pregnancy cam from a Boston Herald story titled, “Alaska principal: Bristol Palin’s situation will be a learning opportunity for teens.” Why would anyone care what Bristol Palin’s former high school principal thinks about her pregnancy? I know I sure as hell don’t. He says the pregnancy will serve as a learning opportunity for teenagers. I think it’s actually making things worse with all of the coverage the pregnancy is getting, making Bristol Palin seem like some type of celebrity.
    These are my thoughts on the way some of our nation’s top news sources have covered the pregnancy of Bristol Palin. I think it’s been highly unnecessary to give this situation as much coverage as it’s received, and hopefully this “breaking story” will calm down sometime in the near future.

  5. Megan Nichols
    September 11, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    I looked at the coverage and headlines from The Washington Post, Anchorage Daily News and The Miami Herald on Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2008, one day after the announcement that Gov. Sarah Palin’s daughter is pregnant.
    I chose these three newspapers because each represents a different region in the U.S. and each has different opinions about what is the biggest story in their area.
    As we saw in class last week, The Anchorage Daily News had a large picture of Palin’s daughter holding Palin’s infant son. The picture and article, which was titled ‘Pregnancy steals spotlight,’ covered the top half of the front page. In making the decision to run the story as big as they did one day after the announcement the editors were obviously taking into account that Anchorage is Palin’s hometown and interest was still high at the time.
    In The Washington Post and The Miami Herald, the pregnancy was not the big story. On the front page of both newspapers Hurricane Gustav was the focus with articles about Palin’s daughter in a single column to the right of the Gustav coverage. The headline in The Washington Post article read ‘Hurricane Isn’t Only Jolt For Convention: Palin’s Daughter, 17, Is Pregnant,’ without a photo. The article in The Miami Herald was titled ‘Palin’s teenage daughter pregnant,’ with a headshot of the daughter above the headline.
    By day two, many considered the pregnancy controversy to be old news. And as Gustav approached the Gulf it’s clear it was a more pressing issue, especially for people in Florida and the government in Washington D.C. that was criticized after Hurricane Katrina.

  6. Kiah Hasett
    September 12, 2008 at 12:11 am

    New York Times
    “Alaskan Is McCain’s Choice; First Woman on G.O.P. Ticket”
    Published August 29, 2008
    This story ran as a second-day story examining the day-after reactions to the announcement of Sarah Palin as Republican presidential candidate John McCain. The words used to describe Palin in the lede were “little-known, “self-described ‘hockey mom’,” and “almost no foreign policy experience.”
    It covered remarks from her speech and mentioned the importance of the nomination of a female. It highlighted that both McCain and Palin are party mavericks, despite still differing on a number of policy issues. The reporters spoke to opposition leaders as well as to Palin’s base. It also included information about how McCain and Palin met and how many times they had been in contact.
    In keeping with the Times’ tradition, this story was the longest and incorporated information gathered by a variety of reporters in different locations.

    London Telegraph
    “Sarah Palin: John McCain’s Secret Weapon to Win Over Reagan Democrats”
    Published September 6, 2008
    This article approached the Palin pick with an angle rather than focus on the news of her nomination; it was about the significance of the Palin pick, especially who the McCain campaign thinks she’ll appeal to. It examines the Reagan Democrat and focused on Democratic voters excited about Palin. The article included Palin rhetoric about blue-collared workers from a speech given in Michigan and the importance of this campaign stop and the tour through the Iron Belt. The story also focused on women voters, perhaps to see how well she is connecting with female voters.

    Anchorage Daily News
    “Governor becomes overnight sensation”
    Published September 5, 2008
    The first quote in this story was from an Alaskan delegate at the RNC who compared her to Princess Diana. It was also referenced that TIME magazine said she was the second coming of Ronald Reagan, which is a little bit rock star.
    It was also the first article to point out that press access to Palin has been very, very limited and did so twice.
    It focused on Alaskan interests: whether Alaska has lost her to national politics, their impressions and what the Republican National Party told them they should say to the press about her.

  7. Jenna Gibson
    September 12, 2008 at 12:17 am

    I am comparing news coverage of Gov. Sarah Palin Thursday, Sept. 11. I chose to look at three different outlets, http://www.yahoo.com, “Lou Dobbs Tonight” and “USA Today”. All three mentioned Palin at some point, with each taking a completely different angle with their stories.
    Although the fact that Palin is the vice presidential candidate is not new anymore, news outlets are still finding different angles to take surrounding her in the campaign.
    The homepage of http://www.yahoo.com had a picture of Palin on the top left in their featured news stories. This particular story hints at some of the topics that will be covered in Palin’s interview with ABC News, which will air Friday.
    In his show, Lou Dobbs took another angle, sarcastically commenting on a “tirade” from actor Matt Damon about Palin. After showing a clip of Damon saying he is worried about Palin’s lack of experience, Dobbs scoffed, pointing out that Damon has never held office, and that he won Sexiest Man of the Year in the past, all in a condescending tone.
    In “USA Today”, Palin does not appear until page 4A, where the story focuses on a comment from Barack Obama that supposedly insulted Palin and the Republican response to that comment. The Democratic candidate used the phrase “lipstick on a pig” in a speech yesterday, and McCain’s camp lashed out in outrage. Palin is still the center of these types of stories, even if the other candidates are brought in on the side. Palin also made appearances in opinion stories and a political cartoon on subsequent pages of the paper.
    So while Palin has been in the news almost non-stop for the past few weeks since she joined the Republican ticket, news outlets are still finding new stories to cover about her.

  8. Amber Johnson
    September 12, 2008 at 11:26 am

    In comparing coverage of Sarah Palin, I found an alarming trend: the continuous need to draw attention to Palin’s femininity. An article that ran in USA Today September 3rd focuses completely and entirely on Palins’… eyeglasses. The headline, “Palin has created quite a stir… with her designer glasses,” left me completely dumbfounded. I tried to tell myself that it had to just be a misleading headline but as I read on I found that the article was about just that. It wasn’t so much that it wasn’t interesting, but the fact that had McCain or Obama been wearing glasses, an article on the “trendiness” of the celebrity specs would have never been written.

    The next article I reviewed was an article published in the New York Times Political Blog entitled “Oprah Says No to Palin, and Gets an Earful.” This article addressed Oprah fans boycotting her show, website and magazine after news that Oprah would not interview Palin because she had already endorsed Obama. While yes, Oprah’s fanbase consists of a large female population, the article seemed of novelty value, again placing too much attention on her womanhood. I think Palin was lucky in this case. Had she appeared on Oprah I would fear she wouldn’t be taken as seriously. Strangely enough, Obama appearing on Oprah didn’t seem quite comparable.

    The last article I read was an article published August 28th by the National Organization for Women entitled “Not Every Woman Supports Women’s Rights.” This article was about how Palin opposes abortion. Now abortion has been a matter discussed in every election. However, I’ve stumbled across article after article talking about how Palin is a mother of five, has a pregnant daughter and yet opposes reproductive rights. I personally find it ironic and think that many news sources have almost played on the controversial issue, bringing it home a little more by swaying voters one way or another. This is usually done within the headlines as in this article, but also through photos and the articles themselves.

    Palins femininity is being made increasingly aware, when we should really be focusing on the candidates themselves. Sure, Hilary played off the fact that she was an experienced female candidate, but my guess is that articles about Hilary in relation to fashion, talk shows, and motherhood were not making more headlines then her actual fight against Obama.

  9. Jessie Evertson
    September 12, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    On Friday, Sept. 12, there were two stories about Sara Palin that newspapers picked up. First was her interview on ABC news Thursday night and her speech at Fort Wainwright earlier in the day.

    The New York Times gave the interview story space for a couple of paragraphs and a picture in the bottom left corner. The article starts off by questioning Sara’s ability to be vice-president, or if necessary, president. It also says that she was nervous and relied on prepared answers. The headline says “In first big interview, Palin says, ‘I’m ready’ for the job.” The article was mostly about how she handled the interview and not what she had to say on the issues. The New York Times is one of the most read newspapers across the nation so they often have to consider national news more than other papers. I think that is why the editor chose to put it on the front page.

    The Cleveland Plain Dealer gave Palin a refer on the front page for an article about the ABC interview. Palin is less important to the people of Cleveland but is still big national news so the editor decided to let the readers know that they had a story about her, just not one that deserved the first page.

    In the Anchorage Daily News, Every story, except for a small 9/11 story in the left hand corner, was about Palin. That’s four stories. And there were three more Palin story refers. They covered the interview, her speech, troopergate, and Palin’s affect on the photosphere in Alaska. The interview story shed Palin in a good light, deflecting her past blunders and shining the light on her confidence. I understand that this is basically her hometown newspaper, but what about the other news that happened that day? What about the people that want to know about what’s going on in the world outside of Palin? The editors know that Palin will sell their paper but they should have considered all of the readers and their needs.

  10. Lauren Garcia
    September 12, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    While many aspects of Sarah Palin’s life are being brought to the forefront in this election including her daughter’s pregnancy and her husband’s record, one topic I find important, yet not covered too much by the press is sending her son off to Iraq.
    The New York Times published an article on their “The Caucus Blog” entitled “Palin Bids Goodbye to Her Son.” This is the only article covering this specific topic I found on the website, and it’s really part of a blog. In the article, Palin was portrayed as an emotional mother saying goodbye to her son and his fellow soldiers. Here the media are taking another chance to show the public that she is a “real woman” and dedicated mother. The headline alone suggests that she is abandoning her role as a politician in order to fulfill her maternal duties. Other than this article, however, the Times chose to not really cover this topic.
    Likewise, the Omaha World Herald ran the same AP story, but it was titled “Palin switches roles to send a son to Iraq.” The World Herald ran a couple more stories about this particular aspect of Palin’s life, which is much different from the Times. One focuses on what Palin’s son’s roles will be in the military, which will be no more important than any other private. Another highlighting the personal effect having a son in the war has on candidates, including Palin and Joe Biden. Clearly, a publication like the Omaha World Herald has an audience of mostly conservative Midwesterners who enjoy reading stories about a Republican woman with a patriotic son going to the war. It is what many people are experiencing in this part of the country, so stories like this bridge the gap between voters and this candidate.
    And on CNN.com, I found at article from The Leaf Chronicle that was titled “Palin, Biden sons bound for Iraq.” This publication from Clarksville, Tennessee took a slightly different approach. Not only did they talk about wartime effecting Palin and Biden, but also the historical significance of politician’s children fighting in war. It then explains the opposing viewpoints of the candidate’s respective parties on what the proper way to end the war should be. Rather than take a family, emotional viewpoint with this article, the author chose to present facts and relate the situation to the rest of the campaign as well as some history. This is really the only article about the topic of Track Palin in this publication.
    With a topic like this, news publications have a chance to show how unbiased and creative their reporting can be. Although this topic is not covered very much, I thought that all of these newspapers did a good job of letting alone was is private and bringing to light the aspects that really matter.

  11. Tawny Burmood
    September 12, 2008 at 2:22 pm

    The first article I looked at was in the New York Times on Sept. 2, after Alaskan governor announced Palin’s dauther was five months pregnant the day before. The Palin story was titled, “Palin’s Teen Daughter Is Pregnant; New G.O.P. Tumult.” Within the story the McCain campaign says they were fully aware of the pregnancy. In the article they get a lot of quotes from a lot of different people which I like, because it shows that people really sympathize with Palin and her family. There also is a quote by Barack Obama from a press conference in Monroe, Mich., responding to all the talk about the pregnancy. “Obama said the pregnancy “has no relevance to Governor Palin’s performance as a governor or her potential performance as a vice president.” He also added that his mother had him when he was 18 and he doesn’t feel a teenage pregnancy and how the family deals with it should be a topic of politics. Also on the page with this story was a picture of Palin’s daughter and her newborn son.

    Another article I looked at was in the Seattle Post, titled “Palin’s nomination adds fuel to abortion debate.” This article talked to many people for pro-life and they were thrilled when McCain chose her as his running mate. Most feel that her and her family are good representation of pro-life. One opponent of aboriton of Family Research Council, Connie Mackey said, “The pro-abortion contingent didn’t think there would be anyone this high profile who’d not only talk the talk but walk the walk.”

    Today, Sept. 12, in the Anchorage Daily News there is a story covering Palin’s speach at Fort Wainwright deployment ceremony, seeing her son off to Iraq. I really like the quote they started off at the second paragraph, “We’re gonna miss you. We can’t help it, we’re gonna miss you,” Palin told the troops. I do feel like this is a great article to run just because it shows Palin as a mom and because it’s the Anchorage news, and Palin is a big deal in Alaska. However, the Anchorage Daily News has been filling there front page with a lot of Palin since she’s been anounced as McCain’s VP pick. I feel she should be on the front page, just not the whole front page.

  12. Travis Beck
    September 12, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    In the New York Times September 7 article entitled, “Fusing Politics and Motherhood in a New Way,” staff writers describe how McCain’s VP pick Sarah Palin hid her latest pregnancy for 7 months before telling her friends and family. The article foucus on her elaborate camouflage techniques in hiding her soon to be child, as well as the Palin’s refusal to seperate work and family life. Whether she was speaking at home in Alaska or flying around the country, she did not behave like the typical pregnant “hockey mom.” I think the article did a good job of boasting Palin’s physical and mental strength while also highlighting her admirable yet unorthodox behavior as a mother. I believe this article was necessary in describing what kind of person Sarah Palin is, explaining all her qualities in the same light and leaving objective critiques up to the readers.
    The September 3 Lincoln Journal Star article entitled, “Palin casts herself as Washington outsider,” describes Palin’s first official greeting to the world at the Republican National Convention. The AP writers focus mainly on her speech, apparently written by George Bush’s speech writer, Matthew Scully, and subtle attacks on the Obama campaign, “In politics, there are some candidates who use change to promote thier careers. And then there are those, like John McCain, who use thier careers to promote change.” As former TV sportscaster, Palin had no problem delivering a confident and galvanizing speech, focusing on everything GOP suppters wanted to hear. This article was interesting because it included facts that I hadn’t known, such as Palin’s former TV sportscaster persona and the disclouse from McCain’s campaign about her private attourney being authorized to spend $95,000 of state money to defend her against accusations of abuse of power and pork-barrel spending. Knowing their were countelss other articles written about Palin’s acceptance speech, I think this one did the reader justice in not just giving you the black and white, but some of the grey as well.
    In the Denver Post’s September 11 article entitled, “Jubilant Alaskans welcome Gov. Sarah Palin home,” an associated press writer describes the arrival of Palin back to her home-state after weeks of campaigning with McCain. The headline says it all, and there is nothing interesting about Palin being welcomed back home, that happens to every politician in every home-state. The article was predictable and justifiably short in length. The writer repeatedly stressed Palin’s arrival being the first venture away from McCain and his advisers, like she couldn’t stand well on her own, on her own soil. I liked the first two articles more because they revealed interesting things that I did not know. Denver Post’s article is the type that should be a wire report, it deserves nothing more than that.

  13. Kara Brown
    September 12, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    While it is difficult to classify the entire barrage of press surrounding Sarah Palin, a trend has emerged in articles that are meant as “analyses” of her. They seem to comprise either side of a false dichotomy: Either Palin is a warrior-goddess, fighting ceaselessly against corruption and the political regime, or she is a hypocritical, trivial monger of earmarks. This is evidenced in both overt and more subtle ways through the press, but the tendency to shove her into one of two boxes is something that seems to transcend region and audience.

    The Joan of Arc of Alaskan politics
    Gov. Sarah Palin: A biography
    Anchorage Daily News, Aug. 29, 2008
    This article is a probably the most prominent example of Palin’s press as a divine warrior of sorts – the headline itself is indicative. It seems hard to imagine a journalist writing “Obama: The Mars of Chicago politics” or “The Charlemagne of the Senate.” The author seems to be idealizing her throughout the entire story as well, showing her as David fighting the Goliath-like regime in Alaska. He actually makes concessions for her when mentioning the State Trooper controversy – he refers to her “clean record” even though the scandal was definitely a spot on her record. What’s interesting about the article is that it was written before Palin was chosen as the vice presidential candidate and thrust into the spotlight. That may perhaps contribute to the fanciful tone – she hadn’t been exposed to much criticism yet. Also, the fact that it was written in her home state may be a reason why the author is so willing to idealize and flatter her.
    Article here: http://www.adn.com/news/politics/story/510048.html

    Palin accepts VP nomination
    Daily Nebraskan, Sep. 5, 2008
    While this article is pretty neutral and non-dichotomous in its content, the word choice may speak a little differently. The author says she “elaborated” on her resumé, instead of speaking about it, uses “despite” when talking about how she could be happy, even if she had a pregnant teenage daughter. The cover of the daughter, while it doesn’t appear until about halfway through the story, essentially dominates the rest of it. It is a local story, so it shows perhaps what people here think – that while they aren’t going to outrightly claim that there is a bit of a biased perception of Palin, the subtleties seem to say otherwise.

    Sarah Palin’s Myth of America
    Time, Sep. 10, 2008
    This magazine article functions as an example of the other side of the coin – portraying Palin as hypocritical fluff. Once again, the title is extremely indicative of the tone of the article. But in this case, it’s one of triviality instead of divinity. The fact that it’s in a magazine and published after the maelstrom of publicity would make one think that the coverage is more neutral and less biased. And it is, in a way – there are no references to pigs and lipstick, and it is obvious the author is trying to be objective. However, the overwhelming tone of the story, from the beginning to the last sentence, is that while Barak Obama has a real life story, Sarah Palin’s has no merit.

    Article here: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1840388,00.html

    What I actually find most fascinating about all of the articles is the reader comments. They actually seem to pigeonhole her the most, which contradicts Palin’s opinion that the media are out to crucify her (as she essentially said at the Republican National Convention). For example, in the comments on the ADN article, “What an insult to a truly great woman (Joan)” is two lines below a quote from Joan that implies the two are similar.
    One can’t help but thinking back to Hillary Clinton’s public perception – she too had an extremely polarized perception. So is this the way all women in politics will be portrayed as and thought of, or is it just coincidence that these two are judged by a binary? Is there something about our society and media that won’t permit the balanced, or non-dictomous, portrayal of a female in politics?

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