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Bristol Palin to Keith Olbermann: I'm Perfectly Qualified To Advocate Teen Abstinence

Bristol holding her brother, Trig, in 2008.

Recently, Bristol Palin and The Situation teamed up to deliver a PSA encouraging teens to “pause before you play.” (By the way, is it “The” Situation or “the” Situation?) The campaign was implemented by the Candie’s Foundation, a non-profit organization whose mission is to prevent teenage pregnancy. Palin and the Situation, both famous for being themselves—whether while dancing or chasing tail—take two different approaches in avoiding teen pregnancy. And MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann apparently has a problem with Bristol’s involvement in the campaign.

Yesterday, Bristol responded to the dry-witted TV personality. And, I must say, I was surprised by what I read.

My buddy Carolyn Castilla wrote about the Candie’s PSA when it first went down. Since then, several people have taken pop shots at poor Bristol and or her ab-baring counterpart. Most recently it was Olbermann.

The Washington Post rehashed the, um, situation earlier today. Olbermann contends that the last person who should advocate abstinence is a young lady, who, herself, is a teenage mom. “She’s the Candies spokesperson for abstinence?” he asks his viewers sarcastically. “She and her son? Because it’s got to work this time?”

Bristol addressed his comments on her Facebook page.

Accusing me of hypocrisy is by now, an old canard…Mr. Olbermann fails to understand that in order to have credibility as a spokesperson, it sometimes takes a person who has made mistakes. Parents warn their children about the mistakes they made so they are not repeated. Former gang members travel to schools to educate teenagers about the risks of gang life. Recovered addicts lecture to others about the risks of alcohol and drug abuse. And yes, a teen mother talks about the benefits of preventing teen pregnancy…You can attack me all you want. But you will not stop me from getting my message out about teen pregnancy prevention. And one day, if you ever have a daughter, you may change your mind about me.

Whoa! Did you notice the zinger on the way out the door? Impressive, indeed.

There are so many aspects in this scenario, I don’t even know where to begin. But I’ll start with the obvious. I’m incredibly disappointed that I had to google one of the words that B. Palin used effortlessly in her first sentence. And I realize that opens me up a bit. Perhaps “canard” is one I should have known, but, alas, it was not.

And then there’s this: if I were in Vegas, and I were allowed to place a wager on who would win in a battle of wits between Bristol Palin and Keith Olbermann, sorry, folks. I’d take Keith Olbermann every single time. But in this instance, I would have lost. Because Bristol nailed Oblermann to the wall.

Forget the fact I’m skeptical that she’s the actual author of her Facebook post. (Read: There ain’t no way she wrote that, y’all. Canard was but the tip of that ghost-written iceberg.) Because it doesn’t matter. Olbermann lost this matchup the second he opened his mouth. As “Bristol” already stated, she’s absolutely qualified. For the exact reason Olbermann claims she’s not. Who better to tell you the exact nature of the burn than the one who got caught in the fire to begin with?

But the funny thing is, I really do have a problem when it comes to Bristol (and the Situation) being advocates for preventing teen pregnancy, only it has nothing to do with hypocrisy. My problem is that I wish our society churned out better spokespeople to address our children than a guy known for his abs and a girl who’s known for a mom who can see Russia from her home state.

But that’s where we are right now. An ever growing number of our pop culture icons have ascended to such a status without possessing any particular skill or aptitude. What’s more alarming, many of these reality stars (such an oxymoron) seem void of virtue, packed full, instead, of superficiality. Especially the Situation. I can’t even look at that guy without wanting to hop in the shower. Talk about someone who doesn’t seem to see the bigger picture…

All that said, when choosing spokespeople who can reach a multitude of our youth, the Candie’s Foundation made good choices as both of these young people are, indeed, very well known.

So, relax, Keith. And let Bristol do her thing. Because the message, while a poorly written and atrociously acted out (I’ve embedded it below in case you’ve missed it…) is a positive one. Hopefully she and the Situation will make a difference when it comes to teen pregnancy.

And you know what else I’m hoping? That one day our society will be more selective when deciding which stars shine brightest in our pop-culture sky. Because I sure would like it if the next group of teenagers were to hear a similar message from young people with a little more substance.

But maybe that’s just me.

Photo: Wikipedia

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John Cave Osborne’s personal blog.
John Cave Osborne’s book website.

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