In what seems like a colossally stupid political move, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has decided that the United States should not support the Egyptian protesters. In an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network, Palin spoke in her usual incoherent style on a number of topics, among them the current political turmoil engulfing the Arab world.
Specifically, Palin expressed skepticism at the motives of the protestors, asking, "How do we verify what it is that we are being told, what it is that the American public are being fed via media, via the protestors, via the government there in Egypt in order for us to really have some sound information to make wise decisions on what our position is?"
Ignoring for the moment Palin's apparent unfamiliarity with the finer points of English grammar, the gist seems to be that, frankly, we just can't trust the Egyptians. Or the media. Or the Egyptian government. Ideally, let's stop trusting our own government, too, for the sake of consistency.
There's a problem with Palin's ramblings, though: We do know what's happening on the ground in Cairo. Through Twitter, Facebook, any number of first-hand accounts and up-to-the-minute reporting by pretty much every news outlet on the planet, we can garner a good picture of the situation.
Palin went on to criticize President Barack Obama's handling of the situation, saying (no kidding) that she is "not real enthused." Evoking Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's famous campaign advertisement of 2008 wherein a foreign crisis occurs and the White House phone goes unanswered, Palin went on to critique the president, unleashing yet another gem upon the American people: "Nobody yet has explained to the American public what they know, and surely they know more than the rest of us know who it is who will be taking the place of Mubarak."
This, then, is a newsflash for Sarah Palin and anybody who thinks her random ramblings actually amount to any substantive statement worth the waste of time to listen: nobody needs to explain to the American public what "they" know, because we already know. We know that there are protestors in Tahrir Square and that those protestors desperately want the deposition of a tyrant (who actually has some good qualities, to give credit where it's due) and the installation of democracy. Sarah, we can't tell you who will take Mubarak's place. That's sort of the point.
The Egyptian protesters unequivocally deserve our support, but on a more important note, they deserve our respect. As the situation has progressed, public attention has shifted from amazement to speculation as to how America can best exploit the civil unrest for her own benefit. This is shameful; rather than planning how best to take advantage of what may be a fledgling Arab democracy, we must recall that the Egyptians are fighting for those ideals that America supposedly holds most dear: democracy and liberty.
And please, for the love of all that is good and beautiful, someone find Palin a muzzle.