Friday, September 12, 2008

More than one-third of seniors are online; McCain isn't one of them.

So, now is the time when we bloggers worry that Barack Obama's "Still" is offensive to seniors, because it dares mock John McCain for being too damn lazy to send an email:

As I note in the title, one-third of seniors are online, among them my aunt, who recently went online: she wanted to send email to her grandchildren. She's John McCain's age, but she has none of his advantages. She never attended college and she never married wealth. Her children bought her the computer, and she learned to use it. Now, she's more technologically savvy than John McCain.

Like my aunt, my uncle, her younger brother, never went to college and he never married wealth. He'd like to join her online, so he can send her and my mother email, but he doesn't feel he can - not because he's worried that he won't be able to learn how, but because he's worried he can't afford the cost.

Shockingly enough, Abe Simpson is not an accurate reflection of most seniors.

Those bloggers worried that Barack Obama's "Still" might offend seniors have a cartoonish view of them. They aren't Abe Simpson. Like everyone else, they want to communicate with their family and friends, and they use the internet - or want to use the internet - to do so.

Except John McCain. So the question is, why doesn't John McCain, a person with every advantage, make use of the internet to enrich his life, if not to render himself fit for office? Why doesn't he want to send email to his children and grandchildren, like my aunt?

If I had to guess, I'd say he doesn't make use of the internet because of those very advantages. George Bush employs an aide to download music for him - why should he learn how to do it himself? McCain is no different. Why should he learn how to send email? He can pay someone to do that.

John McCain has lived in a bubble for so long, even common technologies are alien to him. Worse, rather than break out of that bubble, he brags about his ignorance.

And that really is offensive.