In a Sept. 3 NewsBusters post, Mark Finkelstein writes: "Be grateful for small things. [NBC's] Ann Curry didn't call Bristol Palin's baby 'illegitimate' or a 'bastard.' She settled for 'out-of-wedlock.'" He adds: "Out of wedlock? How ineffably Victorian."
Resurrect shame – deep, abiding disgrace. While you're at it, whatever became of the shotgun wedding? Bring back the pejorative "bastard." I don't like it; it's hurtful, but it had its uses. So does hurt. With hurt come hard-won insights. The prospect of bearing a bastard once forced a parent to think: Do I want my child to bear this burden? Do I want for myself the status of an unwed, untaught mother? Expel pregnant girls; don't cater to them and kit them out.
Let's not pretend that right-wingers have totally abandoned their pejorative views of teen pregnancy just because they're afraid to criticize their new right-wing star, even as Finkelstein strives to put his best spin on it: "As a technical matter, whenever the baby was conceived, isn't Bristol 'having' the child 'in wedlock'"?
We know Finkelstein won't apply those words to Bristol Palin; how about Ilana Mercer?