I’m not really either a Republican or a Democrat, but I probably lean more to the Democratic side in politics. However, I have certain Republicans that I like.
I really loved Bob Dole’s wife, Elizabeth. I was sort of hoping she’d make a run for the presidency a couple of elections back. I’d like to have seen someone like her become the first woman president.
I also thought Mike Huckabee was okay. He seemed very even keel and fair-minded. I would’ve been okay with him getting the presidential nomination when he ran for it in 2008.
However, this week I was very disappointed in him when he decided to single out Natalie Portman (of all people!) as an example of a celebrity sending a bad message.
“One of the things that’s troubling is that people see a Natalie Portman or some other Hollywood starlet who boasts of, ‘Hey look, you know, we’re having children, we’re not married, but we’re having these children,’ and they’re doing just fine,’” Huckabee told radio host Michael Medved on Monday. “But there aren’t really a lot of single moms out there who are making millions of dollars every year for being in a movie.” (Excerpted from “Mike Huckabee criticizes Natalie Portman for being pregnant and unwed“)
Natalie Portman? Really? That’s who you decided to go with, Mr. Huckabee?
When I first heard about it yesterday I just shook my head. Many were speculating he had made the comment in an attempt to start making a bid for the 2012 presidential nomination by winning over social conservatives.
All I could think was, “That’s not a very smart move. Natalie Portman is an accomplished, brilliant, extremely likable celebrity who’s not gotten into any of the trouble half her contemporaries have. Even social conservatives might be put off about him singling her out.”
But then this morning I listened to a clip where Rachel Maddow said he didn’t do it out of some political maneuver. Her theory is he’s got his sales hat on. He’s on the book trail. This was all about PR.
Which almost makes it worse in my mind. Bristol Palin is not any kind of celebrity of the magnitude Natalie Portman is. She certainly hasn’t contributed to society in a meaningful way like Portman.
Yet, thanks to her mother and her own efforts (like her appearance on Dancing with the Stars), she’s become a pseudo celebrity. Why not single her out? She’s an unwed mother, too.
Especially if you’re looking to create controversy. Imagine what kind that would stir up blasting one of your own party member’s daughters?
But if he did that, he’d jeopardize pissing off Palin supporters I guess. So better to pick on a Hollywood “starlet” who does make millions and is financially capable of supporting her own child, rather than the daughter of a former Republican governor who’s relying on mommy and daddy to support both her and her child.
Which is exactly the point he was trying to make, isn’t it? How often so many unwed mothers are poor and can’t support themselves?
And I disagree that Portman’s intent was to “glamourize” having children out of wedlock. MTV does that way more than Portman ever could. Their “16 and Pregnant” tries to show the unglamourous side of having kids out of wedlock at a young age, but guess what? I think it has exactly the opposite effect because it shows girls on TV who are the focus of attention. Just the very thing most teen girls desire most.
At the end of the day, whether he was trying to make a point or sell books, I don’t think Huckabee used very good judgment singling Natalie Portman out. There are far better bad role models he could’ve chosen from.