September 13, 2008

What They're Sayin' About Palin in My Neighborhood

I live in a small city in corn country. The city itself is home to a large university and has a diverse population that is generally well educated. Step just beyond the university community, however, and you find a dominant culture of Ditto Heads, Walmart shoppers, and white-bread working folks. These are the locals--farmers, laborers, clerical workers, nurses, technicians--who support the key industries of the region: higher education, healthcare, and agriculture.

I am a local, a white woman over fifty, and so are most of my friends and colleagues. Two or three of us are political creatures by nature. The rest are not, and they rarely discuss politics. But let me tell you--Sarah Palin has everyone talking.

Here is some of what I'm hearing from this group of older white women in conservative middle America:
  • "I'm insulted! I can't believe McCain thinks we're stupid enough to vote for someone just because she is a woman."
  • "John McCain must be crazy to pick that woman! Can you imagine her as President? There's no way."
  • "Palin is a nut; she's scary."
  • "I don't understand why the polls are so close. Obama and Biden are the only sensible choice."
So, where are the pollsters finding all those older white women who don't want to vote for Obama? Where are the ones who like Sarah Palin? One of my friends knows one of those women, but I have yet to meet one.

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