Friday, January 8, 2010

Time for Palin To Go On Letterman ?

Letterman has ceased the "Things more fun than reading the Sarah Palin memoir" nightly series of  "disaster" clips. Some were funny in a gruesome way and some, as Palin herself said of the one in which a car drives into a tree were "just silly". On the plus side the photo of Palin they used to introduce the segment was very fetching.

The audience, I believe, took the segment light heartedly and it could be said that, given the over the top nature of the clips, they fell into the category of standard satire without a vicious edge. Certainly they were introduced in a straighforward, non-acerbic, manner and played for laughs.

Letterman has, after his first apology subsequent to his crude "joke" about Palin's daughter, which came across as non-sincere and seemed more audience directed rather than to Palin and her family, apologised a further two times.

The second apology, which seemed quite sincere, included a a full explanation of what he described as a mistake in identity (regarding which of Palin's daughters attended the baseball game in question) on his part, the third apology, included as an addition to his mea culpa for his affair with a staffer, with its straightforwardness in tone, tenor and brevity was, I believe, heartfelt. Since the start of the new year Letterman has not made any jokes or comments about Palin I am aware of-not that he is not completely entitled to do so if he wishes, no public figure is immune from satire which is of course the American way.

I believe Palin has everything to gain from going on his show, if indeed Letterman has undertaken a new and balanced approach to her. It would show a magnanimous (and Christian) spirit on her part, a willingness to forgive and forget and to move on in the light of a sincere apology. It would attract, certainly, one of the largest television audiences of all time if promoted properly on both sides. That it would boost Letterman's ratings, which was, rightly of course, last year a concern to Palin, would not matter in the spirit of reconcilliation.

Appearing on Letterman would be a further gain for Palin in that it would boost her book and through that assist in getting her message across. Letterman said, in respect of his feud with McCain "The road to the White House goes right through here" meaning of course appearing on his show. A bit of hyperbole certainly, but with a degree of truth in that it would be better for Palin to not be subjected to the sort of "satirical" onslaught that Mccain was after his no show on Letterman's programme when he suspended his campaign.

Certainly if Palin still does not wish to go on Letterman's show now or in the future her decision, as a mother, is one that could only garner respect. However, if Letterman's seeming change of attitude is genuine and continues, there is much to be gained by her appearance, not least for all American's if, in the long run, it assists in the promotion and eventual achievement of her deeply held wishes for our country.

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