Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Jenna and Barbara.

I've been ignoring the Republican National Convention, but after Kos mocked Jenna and Barbara's speech, thus bringing its horrible content to my attention, I couldn't ignore it any longer.

I love my father. But not enough to give that speech. Nor could he hate me enough to ask me to read it. God knows that the Bush family is dysfunctional, but that speech is evidence of an extraordinary pathology. What else explains a father who asks his twentysomething daughters to give a speech that portrays them as vapid, irresponsible, ignorant, privileged twits?

I wasn't terribly impressed with the delivery of Cate Edwards' speech, but when she introduced her mother, she didn't embarrass herself, nor was she asked to embarrass herself to further her family's campaign.

She's no older than the Bushes. Yet she proved herself to be exactly as she described herself: "a young woman about to head out into the real world." When she said, "My mom and my dad have always taught me to dream big and reach high," it was evident that their lessons hadn't been in vain.

When Barbara said, "We've learned a lot more from them about what matters in life, about unconditional love, about focus and discipline," it seemed unlikey. In their speech, how had these young women shown that they were focused or disciplined? Through their knowledge of pop culture? By their ignorance of their father's work? Perhaps they believed mere interest to be sufficient proof.

I doubt the audience would agree. And I share the opinion of the Washington Monthly on their speech: parents in the audience will judge Bush harshly for his daughters' performance.