NOT SPEAKING UP ON SMEARS OF PALIN
by Michelle Malkin
"CNN's Soledad O'Brien denied that her network had aired questions about Palin's mothering, even as her colleague John Roberts asked: "There's also this issue that on April 18, she gave birth to a baby with Down syndrome. . . Children with Down syndrome require an awful lot of attention. The role of vice president, it seems to me, would take up an awful lot of her time, and it raises the issue of how much time will she have to dedicate to her newborn child?"
NBC's Meredeith Viera asserted that only blogs went after Palin's mothering abilities, even as her colleague Brian Williams slyly raised feminists' "fears or doubts that she should be able to do this, that she should be doing this."
How would CBS' Katie Couric like the Gutman standard applied to her? Her husband died at 42 when her daughters were 6 and 2 years old. With two young children devastated by the loss of a father, she opted not to quit journalism. She anchored NBC's "Today Show" through his illness and death, continued working an intensive schedule as one of America's most visible broadcast journalists while a single mother with two fatherless children at home, and then jumped to CBS News, where she maintains a rigorous on-air schedule, travel plans and an off-air social calendar. Where are the finger-waggers?
How about O'Brien? She's been working overtime covering the campaign, anchoring daily coverage and nighttime conventions, and producing documentaries that require much time away from home. Disney's Family Parenting Web site lauds her for "balancing a thriving career as one of America's top news anchors along with her four children" - two daughters now ages 7 and 6 and twin boys who are 4. Where are the Palin-bashers to lambaste O'Brien's professional pursuits?
Also at CNN, Campbell Brown flew to Las Vegas last year to moderate a political debate while 8½ months pregnant. Fox News host and left-wing blogger Alan Colmes, last seen questioning Palin's commitment to prenatal care because she worked and traveled late in her pregnancy, had no comment. When Brown initially left the "Today Show" in 2007, she said she was stepping down to devote more time to family and baby. She immediately turned around and jumped ship to CNN, where she has anchored wall-to-wall CNN Election Center coverage and will launch a nightly show in November.
At NBC, famous balancer of work and motherhood Meredith Viera replaced Couric on the "Today Show." She has three children at home and a husband who has battled multiple sclerosis and colon cancer. By the Gutman standard, Viera should've quit years ago to tend to her family in need.
As a working mother in the media for the last eight years, I know the commitment and energy it took for these women to get to the top. I've filed columns from hospital beds, written books while nursing, brought my toddlers to TV studios and told bedtime stories on the cell phone while boarding planes.
I've worked hard to strike the "balance" we all seek. I've made good choices and bad ones, and have no regrets about the opportunities I've taken or those I've rejected. I couldn't have done it without a supportive husband willing to forego his own career goals - the kind of spouse the media has ignored in Todd Palin and the kind of spouse I'm sure the Sisterhood of the Protected Female Journalists all have.
I don't challenge the commitment these fellow working mothers in the media have to their home lives. What I challenge is their silence and complicity as the Palin-bashers impose a "Family First" double standard on conservatives. The sorority is closed to the Right."
First off, these mighty-media-moms wouldn't have a job were they to befriend a Republican. Even if they had a mind to. And what sort of person is it who goes to work for liberal news entities, anyway? One who either sells her soul, or never had one to begin with.