Revealed: Sarah Palin doesn’t have a clue how to fish or shoot
One of the most damning allegations ever levelled against Sarah Palin came when daughter Bristol’s ex-boyfriend, Levi Johnson, told Vanity Fair that this self-proclaimed outdoorswoman has lied about her interest in fieldsports and doesn’t actually know one end of a fishing rod from another.
“People think that Sarah likes hunting, fishing and camping, but she doesn’t,” he told the magazine. “I’ve never seen her touch a fishing pole. She had a gun in her bedroom, and one day she asked me to show her how to shoot it.”
At the time, Johnston’s comments were dismissed as the embittered of an attention-seeking teenager who had an axe to grind and a liberal media outlet willing to help him.
However this Sunday, America’s favourite “Mamma Grizzly” will launch her reality TV show, Sarah Palin’s Alaska. And by the look of trailers screened here by TLC, Mr Johnston’s comments appear to bang on the money.
On 21 seconds, you will see Palin allegedly trying to catch salmon. Close examination of her equipment reveals that she is using a spinning rod and a reel (you can also see this in the screengrab above). This is significant: in the world of country pursuits, spinning is a dull and repetitive technique largely used by either children or complete beginners. Real afficianados prefer to fly fish, a more complex and absorbing style of fishing, which takes many years to master.
On 27 seconds, meanwhile, you will see Palin stand bolt upright in the boat. This is unsafe, likely destabilise the vessel, and something that anyone who’s spent significant amounts of time on water would simply never do. Especially when they’re a few yards from a potentially-dangerous bear and their children are also in the flat-bottomed craft.
Finally, on 1 minute 20 seconds, the camera cuts to a picture of her loading what appears to be a pump-action shotgun (a vulgar weapon that has no place in a civilised sporting armoury, though that’s another story). A seasoned shot would re-load their weapon with the muzzle facing towards the ground, for reasons of safety: if it accidentally goes off it won’t endanger anyone. She appears, however, to be holding it on her hip and waving it ahead of her like it’s a harmless toy. This is not the behaviour of someone who knows what they’re doing with a firearm.
From this admittedly-short trailer, I would therefore agree with Mr Johnston: the former Governor of Alaska has embellished her outdoorsy credentials, perhaps in an effort to appeal to red-necked portions of the Republican movement.
She looks, to me, like a woman who is completely inexperienced at fishing, shooting, using a boat, rock-climbing, moutnaineering, and all the other folksy pursuits she’s supposed to have mastered years ago.
When the full documentary airs, we could of course discover that the trailer is misleading and that Palin can cast a beautiful fly, is a lethal shot, and knows the Alaskan wilderness like the back of her hand. But on this evidence, I wouldn’t bet on it.Tagged in: BS, rednecks, washington
Recent Posts on The Foreign Desk
- Cameron and Modi bond as they woo some 60,000 overseas Indians at Wembley
- Modi tries to revamp his battered image as he flies to London
- Big defeat for India's Narendra Modi just before UK visit
- Indian voters have a difficult choice in Bihar assembly elections
- Sacred cows and religious intolerance undermine Narendra Modi’s image of India
Latest from Independent journalists on Twitter