Women and Children First

Now that Ann Romney has been trotted out to infuse the appearance of “personality” into her bionic,  “private sector” venture capital hubby, Mitt Romney, a number of the Right-wing carnival barkers are crying foul when the press has the temerity to question her motives when in her “attack mode.”

I remember references to the late Pat Nixon’s “pasted on smile” forty-odd years ago. The late Betty Ford had a drug and alcohol problem. She went on to help others to seek treatment for substance abuse. Just imagine if she had been married to a Presidential aspirant in 2012?  Adults.

In the gestational period of the afterbirth that is Fox News, let’s not forget the wringer we put former First Lady (now Secretary of State) Hillary Clinton through. The Right tried to paint her as a veritable “dragon lady”, despite Nancy Reagan being downright ruthless toward critics of absent-minded hubby Ronnie. Adults.

We’ve tried to have the sensitivity of leaving minor children out the more rough-and -tumble invective. Chelsea Clinton weathered an unfair adolescent slur by Rush Limbaugh for guys who probably were popping Viagra watching the Sarah Palin doppelganger “surrogate” Lisa Ann, porn star of Hustler’s racy parody “Who’s Nailin Paylin?” in Tampa’s strip joints last week. The then underage Clinton daughter was still a child. Ought to be verboten.

The Bush daughters snuck out on a adult, but still underage, D.C. pub crawl with the Secret Service in tow. I imagine then First Lady Laura Bush likely threw the book at the wayward boozing White House girls. She was a librarian once.

Speaking of that media circus in Wasilla, professional “victim” Sarah Palin was running for Vice President in 2008. Her daughter, then 17, Bristol was paraded by the campaign for getting knocked up after some illicit wine coolers in that election. After giving birth at 18, Bristol would go on in the Palin family self-promotion biz for a paying lecture tour about the pitfalls of early pregnancy. Wags would remark that Bristol added an entirely tawdry dimension to Mommy Dearest’s “Drill, Baby, Drill” slogan. All legally adults. Fair game.

Republicans seem to feel entitled maligning Mrs. Clinton and Mrs. Obama because they were successful attorneys in their own right from humble beginnings. Now everyone is supposed to leave poor rich gal Ann Romney alone, even after she gets trotted out as Mitt The Quarter-Billion Dollar Man’s attack dressage horsewoman with a “MRS” degree from BYU? We the “you people” are still wondering where those tax returns are, and do question Mitt’s flip-flop on the auto bailout (among others). Missus Veep pick Jenna Ryan was a lawyer and lobbyist before the “mommy track.”  Professional reticence is generally learned in law school.

Righties: Picking on Michelle’s derriere might not be smart when her hubby has the nuclear launch codes. Rush Limbaugh maligning the Obama minor daughters is beyond the pale.

Summers are a “slow season” for late night comedy writers.  It should be a fun fall, except perhaps for Ann Romney.

Welcome to national politics!