Who’s A Better Parent — Andrew Sullivan Or Sarah Palin?

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Andrew Sullivan, whatever else his talents, is obsessed with former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in a manner that most would find obscene. I personally dislike all politicians. In fact, I’d argue that almost every single politician is a narcissist or suffering from other severe personality disorder. I think there has to be something wrong with you to enter politics in the modern era, particularly at the national level. So I don’t harbor any particular goodwill to Ms. Palin. I lump her in with the rest of the politicians out there.

But Sullivan has a problem. And frequently he focuses this problem on Palin’s parenting. I know that someone who is so clearly unhinged as Sullivan should probably not be addressed, but I had to share the latest example of this from his blog:

Piper Palin As Bodyguard

Is it too outrageous to ask why this little girl is not in school, rather than acting as a media bouncer for her mother on a publicity/campaign tour? Update: because school in Alaska is now out for the summer. My bad.

OK. First off, that has to be one of the best updates ever. Yes, it is your bad to accuse someone of being negligent about the school year when your facts are wrong. But let’s say that Alaska schools were full on in session right now. Is Sullivan really arguing that taking your 9-year-old daughter on a cross-country road trip — where you see historical sites in Washington, D.C., Gettysburg, New York City and Bunker Hill, among other places — is not as educational as being in some classroom? Come on.

My father-in-law actually did take his son (my husband) out of school for a solid week when he was 8 years old to go to Reagan’s second inauguration. I think they were living in Washington State at the time. And they also hit all of the Smithsonians and various historic sites in the area. I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure that my husband learned much more on that trip than he would have in his classroom. Not that, you know, I think disruptions should be the norm.

But for the love of all that’s holy, can we just stop criticizing other people’s parenting so much? I don’t care if it’s Palin or Michelle Obama or your next door neighbor. Give parents some credit and leave them their own space to take care of their children. Otherwise, you might end up looking like Andrew Sullivan here. And nobody wants that.