by Deb Cupples | If anyone needs help in our nation, it's poor, teenage moms -- and especially the choice-less children that they bring into this world. Apparently, "pro life" Gov. Sarah Palin doesn't think so. The Washington Post reports:
"Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential nominee who revealed Monday that her 17-year-old daughter is pregnant, earlier this year used her line-item veto to slash funding for a state program benefiting teen mothers in need of a place to live.
"After the legislature passed a spending bill in April, Palin went through the measure reducing and eliminating funds for programs she opposed. Inking her initials on the legislation -- "SP" -- Palin reduced funding for Covenant House Alaska by more than 20 percent, cutting funds from $5 million to $3.9 million. Covenant House is a mix of programs and shelters for troubled youths, including Passage House, which is a transitional home for teenage mothers." (Washington Post)
To some extent, Gov. Palin shapes public policy that practically affects the lives of more than 600,000 people in Alaska.
On one hand, Gov. Palin is anti-abortion and doesn't seem interested in providing contraception to people who cannot afford children. Instead, Gov. Palin prefers to merely preach and hope that masses of poor women and teenagers will faithfully practice abstinence.
That's a sure-fire recipe for unwanted children.
Put another way, one natural consequence of Gov. Palin's own personal, ideological or "moral" stances is unwanted pregnancy.
Instead of taking real responsibility for such consequences (i.e., helping poor mothers care for the children that Gov. Palin insists should be born), Gov. Palin instead essentially used her policy-making power to make it more difficult for those mothers to care for those children.
Where's the "compassionate" conservatism that so many Republican politicians talk about? Where's the sense of responsibility?
As Michelle Cottle says at The New Republic:
I'm sorry, but a politician who opposes abortion even in cases of rape and incest and who opposes comprehensive sex education should be at the forefront of championing support systems that make it easier for young mothers to keep their babies. (TNR)
Gov. Palin does have a 17-year-old daughter who is with child, and I suspect that Gov. Palin will responsibly step up and help her daughter and grandchild financially -- precisely because she can.
Admittedly, I haven't seen Gov. Palin's personal-finance data. I'm merely assuming that -- as a state governor, especially one with questionable ties to oil companies and Sen. Ted Stevens -- that Gov. Palin won't be missing meals when helping her daughter and grandchild.
Good for Bristol Palin (and child). But what about all those other teenage moms, whose own mom's aren't high-powered politicians or business folks?
Memeorandum has commentary on Cottle's piece.
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