With the country reeling with shock and sadness after the recent shooting in Arizona, many are wondering who or what is to blame.

Immediately after news broke that Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford and several others had been shot outside of a political event last Saturday allegedly by Jared Loughner, many blamed the growing political rhetoric that has become increasingly negative and divisive.

As the news continued to unfold, several voices chided former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for imagery on her website that listed Rep. Gifford’s district, and other Democratic officials, in the “cross hairs” of Republican candidates for the 2010 midterm elections.

While some felt Palin was being unfairly targeted after the Arizona shooting, I think it would be naive to think that, despite Loughner’s history of mental illness, the current nasty political climate is not somehow at work.

In just two years, Sarah Palin has gone from little-known Governor of Alaska to influential Republican personality. Part of Palin’s appeal is that she’s touted her frontiersmen upbringing, often playing up her hunting and fishing background and her penchant for guns.  It is precisely this rhetoric that has many placing some of the blame for the Arizona shooting on her shoulders.

When the health care reform bill passed, Palin did not ask her followers to write their congressperson to express disdain, but rather tweeted, “Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!” And her recent refusal to back away from the “cross hairs” imagery (but rather defend herself by calling them “surveying” symbols) on her website in the wake of the Arizona shooting, has some wondering if Palin’s political career will be able to bounce back after this controversy.

Sarah Palin is a media genius. Her ability to remain active in political discourse and even be in contention for a Republican presidential nomination despite quitting her Governorship is nothing short of astounding. Her rise has been meteoric, but she may just be a victim of her own “cross hairs.”

Like many, it pains me to write about Palin, however, I’m hoping this latest stunt will make her trip to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue even more unlikely.

But in case you still have doubts, here are five reasons why Sarah Palin should fade to black.

She’s Unreliable: Half-way through her governorship, Palin quit citing she could effect even more positive change outside of the governor’s office than within it. In her farewell press conference, Palin told her constituents that she could “fight for all our children’s futures from outside the governor’s office.” Apparently, however, she wanted to pad her own pockets. After stepping down she released a best-selling memoir, inked a deal for a reality show and became a Fox News pundit. Sarah loves (her) kids!

She Makes George Bush Look Like Einstein: First she claimed she could see Russia from her house, and then she couldn’t list a single newspaper she read regularly. Between making up words and her trademark “you betcha,” Palin proudly touts her “common person” persona, while taking shots at the liberal (*ehem* educated) elite. While her interviews have been quite entertaining (because they’re so bad they’re good), leaving such complex issues like garnering a Middle East peace treaty or brokering the START Treaty in her hands would be disastrous for our country.

She’s A Media Whore Who Hates the Media: Sarah Palin at once chastises the media for twisting her (already screwy) words and continuing to attack her family, yet on every occasion she puts herself and her family out there to bask in the media’s spotlight. From her reality show, to her daughter Bristol’s “Dancing with the Stars” appearance, Sarah Palin can’t get enough of the limelight. Sure, most politicians want to get their fifteen minutes, but usually it’s to champion a particular cause, not shoot a Caribou in the Alaskan outback.  I’m just saying.

She Needs More People: Democrats think she’s an idiot, but apparently conservatives cringe each time she opens her mouth as well. If Palin were to make a serious run at the White House, she’d need to get more than just the Tea Party Express on her side, Palin needs to convince middle-of-the-road Republicans she is capable of doing the job. Good Luck with that. Recently, prominent conservative commentator Peggy Noonan called Palin a “nincompoop” and Bush’s brain, Karl Rove, said Palin lacked the “gravitas” to be President. What’s the saying? With friends like these…

Her Foot Loves Her Mouth Way Too Much: Instead of coming out and saying the Congressional map with sniper cross hairs was in poor taste, Sarah Palin released a statement today reiterating that she did not intend for her map to be taken in truth. In her apology Palin could have said, “my bad…I was wrong. I will tone down my rhetoric,” but instead she went on to attack the media for creating an atmosphere of “blood libel,” an anti-Semitic idea that stems from the medieval myth that Jewish people killed Christian babies and used their blood in rituals. The idea of blood libel was used to perpetrate acts of violence against Jews for centuries. But I guess sister Sarah didn’t know about that either, though.

Check out Sarah Palin’s statement on the Arizona shooting. Do you think she has what it takes to make it to the White House? Sound off!

Sarah Palin: “America’s Enduring Strength” from Sarah Palin on Vimeo.

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  • binks

    Two words for sarah palin…”girl stop” like really stop

  • Maurice

    She can speak but she needs to understand words have consequences and you have to be accountable for your speech. If the representative that was shot a Republican and Palin was a Democrat…they’d be blaming her for this unfortunate tragedy and politiczing it. Personally, I do not feel she’s qualified and it has nothing to do with her being a woman. There are plenty of capable women on both aisles who’d be better.

  • Lis4L0VE

    “Sarah Palin is a media genius. Her ability to remain active in political discourse and even be in contention for a Republican presidential nomination despite quitting her Governorship is nothing short of astounding.”

    Eh, let’s slow down. This woman is far from being a “genius” of any kind. In this media culture you can make ridiculous, unfounded statements and get alot of attention for it. The only thing that’s “astounding” is that people, like Macy Ruhl, actually believe this foolishness.

  • sloane

    this fool should not only never be president, she couldn’t even be vice president (or governor for that matter). all she does is insert inflammatory, hateful rhetoric into political discourse and most of the time it doesn’t even make sense (remember her idiotic campaign against michelle obama’s “let’s move” initiative which was only about making kids healthier and more active?). it’s really disgusting that the only thing she could think about when this woman got shot in the head, was herself and taking shots at the “lamestream” media, and using the term blood libel to do it. way to diminish the ACTUAL suffering of an oppressed group of people, sarah!

    i thought bush was bad, but this woman who seems to have even less brain cells then he does is constantly given a platform to spew her obnoxious b.s. and attacks against the obamas. i’m hoping that this brings her down, but like a roach and someone with no dignity who thinks all publicity is good publicity, i don’t think she’s going away anytime soon. and i do actually worry that if she’s ever chosen as the republican candidate, she might actually get elected because braindead wingnuts and tea baggers are galvanized, more likely to vote, and have vitriolic anger that’s been directed at obama for the state of the economy, the healthcare debate, and hell, just for being black. i guess we’ll have to see.

    • How come everyone who dislikes Obama has to dislike him because he’s “black”? How come they can’t just dislike him because of his politics? I can’t stand the guy, not because he’s black, but because he’s for most things that I’m against. Some of my best friends are black, and I’m glad we have a black president (should have happened a long time ago)… I’m just not glad it’s him.

    • sloane

      look, first of all i CLEARLY said wingnuts and teabaggers. second, you “can’t stand him”? i’m sorry but what the hell has the man done in two years of presidency that you “can’t stand”? third, no one can deny the intensity of wingnut vitriol, disrespect, and RACISM, which they’ve exhibited in past with their southern strategy and mexican “scary illegal” border wars (oh i’m sorry i have to include mainstream republicans in that too), and have recently increased to epic proportions since this man was elected. they’ve been questioning if he was born in the united states, questioning if he was arab (so what if he was?) and stating his middle name “hussein” as though he was associated with some kind of jihad, and the number of people involved in white supremacist groups increased along with black people being attacked on the streets in the days after obama was elected. his children were picked on by republicans for their NATURAL BLACK HAIR, his wife has been picked on for wearing shorts. mainstream republicans disrespected him in congress and abused the fillibuster to the point that the senate now wants to limit the way fillibusters are used. not only that, some jackass republican yelled “you lie” at him in the middle of a damn speech. i have never seen such a lack of decorum toward any other president (who were previously ALL white) in all my life.

      oh and by the way, for future reference, the ONLY indication of whether or not you are a racist is YOU, what you say, and how you conduct yourself. not your friends or anyone else you know who may happen to be black.

  • For the record, I don’t like Sarah Palin… but I think it’s completely ignorant for people to even try and act like the shooting was her fault.