Thursday, February 11, 2010

Palin's "Black" Bracelet and the Lesson Not Learned

It seems Sarah Palin unknowingly caused quite a disturbance in the liberal media.

Last Saturday night while speaking to Tea Party Nation, Palin's left hand and wrist were photographed up-close due to the "crib-note" scandal. It seems that a guest writer for Yale Daily News, a man named Eric Robinson, was watching a discussion of the "crib-notes" on MSNBC's Hardball and noticed that Palin was wearing a bracelet similar to one he wears.

These bracelets, created by (All HeroBracelets are made 100% in the USA!), are available in different colors, each color symbolizing the status of the service person named on that bracelet.

Mr. Robinson decided to write this piece for Yale Daily News, entitled "Palin's Bigger Blunder." In the piece, he states;

Last weekend, the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential candidate gave the keynote speech at the first National Tea Party Conference. It was a speech carried by many news channels and one that is still receiving a lot of attention. By now, the story is old: Sarah Palin glanced at some notes written on her hand during her speech and the subsequent question and answer section. The media and left-leaning critics have mocked her ceaselessly. Regardless, she got her message across: Anyone interested in politics across the country now knows her “three principles,” even if they didn’t pay attention to the speech. Well done.

It is not the reminder to “lift American spirits,” however, which has me most troubled or even the Tea Partiers who invited her to speak at their conference. Nor does it have anything to do with her left hand, upon which the notes were scribbled. What has me troubled is a black bracelet firmly clasped around her left wrist.

I hadn’t noticed it until I watched MSNBC’s “Hardball” on Tuesday, but it is a memorial bracelet; something familiar to veterans who have lost friends and family in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I wear one commemorating a friend of mine who died in Baghdad in October of 2006, and I know many other veterans — and some still in the armed forces — who wear these bracelets as a reminder of the sacrifices their friends made on behalf of the units in which they served and the country they swore to protect.

There are many ways to commemorate soldiers; the reminders are everywhere. Yellow ribbons (or their magnetic counterparts) adorn cars and, occasionally, homes. Lapel pins and service flags — blue stars on a white background framed by a red border — grace the coats and homes of those with family members deployed at a war zone. As you might recall, Sarah Palin and Vice President Joe Biden both wore pins during the 2008 campaign. My parents displayed a double blue star during the holidays of 2008 when I was serving in Afghanistan and my brother was an Army officer in Iraq.

And for some soldiers, there is the gold star. It remains on the same white field and the flag has the same outline, but a gold star represents a family member killed in action — the most significant sacrifice one can make on behalf of their country.

This brings me back to my issue with Palin. The name on her black memorial bracelet — one, like the gold star, a demonstration of a friend or associate who was killed in action — is that of her oldest son, Track. Track served honorably in Iraq, and both he and his parents should be thanked for his selfless service to his country. He is also alive.

Commemorating Track’s service by wearing a a black memorial bracelet which is reserved for those dead or even a red bracelet for those missing in action, demonstrates a horrifying contempt for those who gave their last full measure of devotion or an almost unbelievable ignorance of the importance of symbols in American history.

Unfortunately, given Palin’s reputation and frequent public statements, I assume it is the latter.

Sarah Palin, please take off the bracelet. Be thankful you have no reason to wear it."

The Yale paper then states "Eric Robinson is a first-year graduate student in international relations. He is a veteran of both the Iraq War and the war in Afghanistan."

This piece was picked up by multiple media outlets, including Huffington Post and many left-wing blogs which all ran the piece without verification of facts.

It turns out Mrs. Palin's bracelet is not black. According to this statement released by, the bracelet Palin wears is bronze in color, indicating that she is honoring a deployed person - her son Track.

From the statement:

In some recent photo’s of Sarah Palin, we noticed she’s wearing her Deployed HeroBracelet bearing her son’s name, Track Paliin. Track is serving in the Middle East right now.

Back in 2008, we had heard that both Sarah Palin’s son and now Vice President Joseph Biden’s son were heading off on deployements, so we made them both a set of Deployed HeroBracelets with their son’s names on the bracelets. Our way for thanking them both for having son’s in the military. We actually got a very nice call from Senator Biden’s office, thanking us for the HeroBracelets. And now we’re quite proud to see Sarah Palin wearing her HeroBracelet.

(Since this went up, there has been a lot of controversy about the stories that have cropped up online. The basic facts are simple. We sent Gov Palin and Sen Biden Deployed HeroBracelets to honor thier sons. That’s all! They obviously love their sons and were happy to receive the HeroBracelets. With both Palin and Biden, I believe they are showing thier son’s love and respect, not making a political statement. If you’ve got a son or daughter serving our country, you’d probably feel the same way!)

Since the release of the clarification post, retractions have appeared across the internet.

At Huffington Post, they assigned full blame to Eric Robinson and Yale Daily News, and went on to point out that Hot Air missed the facts too as they claimed it was a "Deployment Bracelet" from another company.

(This is the same Huffington Post where the CEO Arianna Huffington decries Glenn Beck and claims that there are "standards in journalism.")

But the most bothersome retraction comes from the source himself, Mr. Eric Robinson. In his retraction, Robinson states:

Author's Note: In my column in the News Wednesday, I criticized former Alaska governor Sarah Palin for wearing a black memorial bracelet with her son’s name on it, as Track returned unharmed from Iraq last fall. However, Sarah Palin's bracelet was not black; instead, it was a dark brown "DeployedHero" bracelet worn by those who have loved ones currently serving in the military. The bracelet is different from the black one associated with men and women who are killed in action overseas. Recognizing this, I apologize to the governor and to any reader who might have been misled by my piece. I hope that this serves as an important lesson for anyone interested in the importance of these symbols.

Mr. Robinson, for you to state in your retraction "I hope that this serves as an important lesson for anyone interested in the importance of these symbols" is beyond absurd.

Your apology and lesson learned should have nothing to do with the "symbol" that is a bracelet on the wrist of a woman whose son is deployed overseas. Furthermore, you should apologize for what you actually did, because what you actually did was cast aspersions on Mrs. Palin's intelligence and character by basing your column on personal bias rather than fact.

The issue at hand is not that someone might have been "misled" by your original column, the issue is that your original column was a flat-out hit-piece. Your writing was nothing short of contemptuous.

Sarah Palin has been ridiculed and mocked by the majority of the media, with MSNBC leading the hate-filled charge against her on a daily basis. The overall tone of the piece you wrote for Yale Daily News displays the same disrespect for Mrs. Palin as can be heard each weeknight during primetime on MSNBC or read at Huffington Post on a daily basis.

The lesson you have clearly not learned here is that you bought right in to the built-in bias of your political perspective, which may in large part be fueled by the choice of media you admit to accepting as a source of trustworthy information.

Mr. Robinson, I suggest next time you think before you write.


Opus #6 said...



Amusing Bunni said...

Hi Solomon, Great post. Once again when the liars get caught, they pretend there was no malice intended. They really need to find better things to talk about. They Hate Sarah so much, they stoop to this.

Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Ah yes, why we shouldn't take that "jump". I'm a veteran that knows absolutely nothing about bracelet colors. If the woman had worn the wrong color ... SO WHAT! And that goes for any parent with a child in combat. They are allowed and forgiven by me (and that would include Joe Biden).

Fuzzy Slippers said...

Great post, Soloman! These morons are beneath contempt, really. I mean if you're going to go after someone on the right the LAST thing you go after them for is their patriotism. That's a non-starter. Every time.

And yet.

And lol @ Opus

Snarky Basterd said...

Hacks come in all shapes and sizes and work in all kinds of places, particularly places like Yale. What a tool.

Soloman said...

Opus -

Funny.. yet not, and sadly true.

Soloman said...

Bunni -

Thanks! Glad you liked...

Yeah, you'd think they'd talk about something important.. like the economy or the fact that our taxes are about to be increased?

But we know better... Obama will get a huge pass on taxes, because he'll sell it as how "we needed to do it" and the MSM will eat it right up.

Soloman said...

Odie -

How dare you not know your bracelet colors! LOL!!

I agree about even giving Biden a pass..

And I even saw a picture of Obama wearing one of these... good for him!

Anyone who honors a soldier in any way is doing a good thing.

Soloman said...

Fuzzy -

You wouldn't believe how many times at Huffington Post I get attacked with statements like "you hate the troops, you wingnut"

They really don't see it as a non-starter. They think they've got a valid discussion there.

Unreal, right?

Soloman said...

Snarky B. -

How dare you question an Ivy League grad... you must be racist!