Jason Tseng

Commander in Chief - Geena Davis vs. Sarah Palin

Filed By Jason Tseng | September 03, 2008 12:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Media, Politics
Tags: John McCain, Sarah Palin

I was very surprised when I heard about John McCain's recent VP pick in Alaska governor, Sarah Palin. The announcement filled me with a mixture of surprise, confusion, and a little tinge of fear. I'll admit that I was an avid Clinton supporter, and the announcement of a female Republican VP definitely perked my interest.

My initial gut reaction to the news was dread. I knew that the choice of a female VP would resound with many of my fellow Hillary supporters who have been hoping and praying for a female president for at least the past several months leading up to the DNC. Our own Serena Freewomyn voiced the same reaction I feared from those whom Hillary's historic run had touched. Would women rally around Palin, simply because she was a woman, despite the fact that she is politically as anti-woman as you can get?

But after I calmed down a bit and started listening to more of the coverage in McCain's choice, I was suddenly reminded of a short-lived TV-drama, Commander in Chief, starring the ever stunning and talented actor, Geena Davis. Video and thoughts after the jump...

iPhone users: Click to watch

In Commander in Chief, MacKenzie Allen (Davis) is thrusted into presidential office after the former President is struck down by a stroke. She faces opposition from many of her fellow Washingtonites, including the Speaker of the House, who reminds Allen that her nomination to the vice presidency was nothing more than a stunt of masterfully crafted political theatre. Her vice presidancy was never intended for presidancy, as evidenced by the former president's own expressed wishes. Allen goes on to fight against misogyny and patriarchy and prove that she is indeed capable of becoming President and takes the oath of office. This, is where the likeness halts.

While I recognize the historical benchmark of Palin's nomination to the GOP ticket as a first for the party (which took the Republicans over 20 years to pass that benchmark following the 1984 VP nomination of Geraldine Ferraro by Democrats), I highly doubt that Palin is being called on by the McCain campaign for anything else than being a pawn in their political chess game. Like, Davis' fictional female VP, Palin is being used as a political puppet, being paraded before disaffected Hillary supporters in the hope that her mere resemblence to a female form will entice those feminists to switch sides.

We've seen that it has had some kind of affect, demonstrated by our own Serena Freewomyn. But I hope that Hillary supporters, like me, will have the patience and intelligence to step back and see the Palin nomination for what it is: men manipulating and exchanging women's bodies for their own profit. Let's be real. Palin is not being brought on the ticket as an equal to John McCain, one who would be given any real responsibility other than campaigning and raising money. Palin is not a partner, rather she is a shallow cover for more Republican maneuverings to manipulate the American people. These Republicans aren't truly interested in the elevation of a woman to the vice presidency for the sake of social progress. This is nothing more than a means to and end. A very disposable and easily controllable means at that.

While I could wish that Palin would more closely resemble Geena Davis' MacKenzie Allen, because she was indeed a tough cookie and a feminist through and through. When Palin is held up to real feminist leaders like Hillary Clinton or the fictional MacKenzie Allen, Palin pales in comparison and leaves much for want.

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I would love for Joe Biden to reprise this classic debate line from 1988.

'Governor, I know Hillary Clinton. I've worked with Hillary Clinton, and you, madame governor are not even close to being Hillary Clinton."

That would be absolutely fantastic! Biden for the win!

Although, I am a little concerned that when Biden ultimately pwns Palin in a debate, i just hope he can avoid sounding sexist or condescending.

Sometimes you have to be bold in politics, tell it like it is and call out ignorance when you see it.

The truth is that Sarah Palin is not qualified to be VP and anybody that thinks 'Sarah Get Your Gun' is, I have some waterfront property I'd like to sell them along I-10 near Breaux Bridge, LA

The difference between Mackenzie Allen and Sarah Palin is that Mackenzie Allen has enough experience to take the presidential role.

Palin does not.

"I know Geena Davis, Governor, and you're no Geena Davis."

I'm glad I'm not the only one seeing all the similarities between "Commander in Chief" and Palin's nomination - especially after watching her speech at the convention last night.

She completely has that whole "Gawsh, shucks, it's just little old me" think going for her while at the same time being willing to roll in the mud and scrap with the establishment.

She could be very dangerous if underestimated.

Wow. I never watched that show, but that's some pretty bad writing!

OK, not that bad, if you're like your TV tough-talkin'.

Either way, though, it was an interesting TV idea, and now we're seeing it in reality. Maybe McCain's a Geena Davis fan too?

I'm not underestimating her. That's why I said she needs to be treated like any other Republican politician.

Whack 'em with the facts and tell the truth about 'em.