Monday, 7 December 2009

What can we believe about Sarah Palin?

There's been a lot of criticism regarding the last post about Sarah Palin's family values since I added information about her father, Chuck Heath.

It all started with the obituary of Dorothy Mooney, which included Chuck Heath as Mrs Mooney adoptive son. I'm not familiar with obituary etiquette in the US, but it appears Chuck Heath was mentioned because he was very close to the family and they wished to pay him a compliment at a difficult time for them, a pain they all shared.

A simple tidbit became far more convoluted when we realized that Sarah Palin herself had made some reference to it in "Going Rogue", detailing some of the events from her father's childhood.

Chuck Heath is central to much of Sarah Palin's story. When running for governor, instead of preparing some policy statements about education, she presented a "My Dad" type of essay. In her mind, having a father who had been a teacher was all she needed to counter any policy statements made by her opposing candidates.

Chuck Heath is well known for saying things that reflect badly on Sarah, such as the little detail of her leaking amniotic fluid at the start of the wild ride for Trig's birth in Alaska. He said the kids kept losing their underwear when Sarah Palin's campaign wardrobe became an issue. He called Levi a deadbeat dad, then had to retract it. He criticized President Obama as Commander-in-Chief during the book tour. More recently we learned that he explained why Sarah transferred from a college in Hawaii to one in Idaho: the unglamourous presence of too many Asians and Pacific Islanders made her uncomfortable.

So Chuck Heath IS relevant when we peel the layers to get to the truth about Sarah Palin...

In "Going Rogue" she painted a very dark picture of her father's childhood, stating that he had to pursue his own outdoor and sports interests by fending for himself due to the lack of support and interest from his parents.

After I updated the post to include excerpts from Sarah Palin's book, somebody sent me an article by a Michael Patrick Leahy, which was included in a book. Mr Leahy based his article on interviews, as described on Amazon:

Relying on interviews with those who know her best--her parents, sister, high school teammates, coaches, teachers, and colleagues, What Does Sarah Palin Believe? will provide unique insights into this fascinating, once a generation political leader of today and tomorrow.

About the Author
Michael Patrick Leahy is a Christian apologist and the author of Letter to an Atheist and What Does Barack Obama Believe?

From his own website:

Michael Patrick Leahy, the conservative radical.

Conservative author and grassroots new media strategist.

Mr Leahy has great admiration for Sarah Palin and wrote his article in 2008 to put the record straight regarding her beliefs and to contrast them with Barack Obama's. He's also a big fan of Ronald Reagan, just like Sarah Palin.

Leahy's article contains some passages, based on interviews, that contradict Sarah Palin's account of her father's childhood.

For example,

Born in Los Angeles, California in 1938 to a UCLA
graduate school teaching mother and a Chicago born free
lance photographer, 30 Chuck moved with his parents to tiny
Hope, Idaho in 1948.31 His parents had been drawn to the
remote community at the tip of Northern Idaho because of
the outdoors life and the fishing. His father, Charles F. Heath,
or “Charlie” to most everyone he knew, loved fishing so
much he eventually started his own little lure company. His
parents were in their late forties when they left Los Angeles
for Idaho, “the first of many that would come over the next
several decades” according to childhood friend Kermit
Keiver.32 Keiver remembers Chuck’s father fondly:

“He was a very gregarious fellow, kind of short and
rotund, and very pleasant to be around. He wore a distinctive
cap with a bill, and when he wasn’t driving the school bus for
the kids that went to the local elementary school, you could
often see him smoking a “cee-gar”. 33

Oh, we would occasionally tip over an outhouse, but most
of the time we were just hunting and fishing. I remember some
great times just being outside, drinking apple cider in the fall,
just enjoying life. Chuck just loved the outdoors. He and his
family just fit right in perfectly with our Northern Idaho
community. 34

I left the reference marks to show how extensively Leahy researched his article. Did he have any reasons to make things up?

Now, we would expect a daughter to have more reliable information about her own father, but we're talking about Sarah Palin.

How can we possibly know what to believe?

Please click on the title of the blog post or CLICK HERE before using the toolbar below for sharing.

No comments: