Note: Even though she has announced that she is not running for President, Sarah Palin is still a prominent voice in the political arena today. Therefore, I still feel this is worth writing about. Also, I committed to this series of posts, and I will see it through. It's who I am.
I’m just going to come out and say it; her fans scare the living daylights out of me. (Yes, they are correctly called fans, not followers or constituents. She is no longer nor shows any interest of ever being a politician again. She is a celebrity now, pure and simple; a celebrity in the political arena, but a celebrity not the less.) These are people that DO NOT take even constructive criticism of their idol kindly. The way they react you would think someone was threading something truly unthinkable of their children. (And, in my opinion, I think they actually care more about her than their own children.)
They have been referred to as Palin-bots, the flying monkeys & zombie bats. These descriptive nicknames definitely don’t inspire any feel good feelings.
Anyone who is perceived as an enemy of one Sarah Louise Heath Palin is subject to the wrath of fans. What this entails is extremely nasty and poorly written emails at best, and death threats to you and your family & friends while broadcasting your personal information at worst. Just ask David Letterman. Or Alaskan bloggers Mudflats, Gryphen or Shannyn Moore. Or Alaskan State Trooper Mike Wooten. Or Levi Johnston and his family. Or Sen. Leland Yee (D-SF), Alicia Lewis & Ashley Briggs.
One of the better known and best documented display of how bad her minions can make life for someone who would have something less than flattering or myth-busting to say is journalist and author Joe McGinniss. He describes his time in Wasilla in his book “The Rouge: The Search for the Real Sarah Palin”. He recounts how the atmosphere got so bad that a number of residents offered Joe weapons so that he could protect himself, including the Mayor, Verne Rupright. As someone who has loved Alaska since researching his book “Going to Extremes”, he could not share that love with his kids and grandkids for fear for their safety. He wrote on his blog about the experience before the book was released.
Disagreement, debate and compromise have always been an important part of our political process. What has been brought forth by the likes of Palin is something completely different and frightening.