Friends, this day's offering shall be a tribute to someone
that you may not expect your faithful Peasant to pay tri-
bute to, but this woman left an indellible mark on our
country's political landscape and our country. Former
U.S. Representative and one-time Vice Presidential
candidate Geraldine Ferraro has passed away a few
days ago, aged 75.
A soaunch liberal, she was chosen by the Democrat's
1984 presidential nominee Walter Mondale to be his
running mate to face off against Presdient Ronald
Reagan and Vice President George H. W. Bush.
Ferraro was the first woman in American history
to be a Vice Presidential candidate on the ticket
of a major political party. She and Vice President
Bush had a very testy exchange during their only
debate in the weeks leading up to the electin, but
in subsequent years they gained a respect and
appreciation for each other and became friends.
Despite the bold choice by Mondale, the pair went
down in the biggest landslide defeat suffered by a
presidential pair from a major U.S. political party
since Republican Alf Landon was steamrolled by
Democrat and incumbent Frankiln D. Roosevelt
Ferrraro made national news once again when
she was picked by President Bill Clinton to be
the American delegate to the U.N. Human Rights
Commission, where she concentrated on issues
concerning women and children.
In the following years, Ferraro's liberalism seemed
to fall out of favor with many Democrats, having lost
two bids for the U.S. Senate, losing her party's nom-
ination twice. She was defeated one one occaision by
current U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer, a partisan who
makes Ferraro look like a female William F. Buckley.
A few years ago, she caught flak for comments she
made concerning her party's choice for presidential
nominee Barack Obama, saying that he was given
his status by the party just because he is black. A
curious thing for someone chosen to be on her party's
ticket years earlier because she is a woman. Your
quizzical Peasant does not know, and may never
know, whether Ferraro made her remark because
of her coming to see the folly of identity politics or
for a baser reason. But in her last years, she started
sounding more measured and reasoned in giving her
opinions on the latest political issues, and even made
friends with people whom she vehemently disagreed
with on same.
Women on both sides of the political spectrum have
hailed Geraldine Ferrraro as a pioneer and a trail-
blazer for women seeking to enter politics. And for
her part, Ferraro was openly happy to see women,
conservative as well as liberal, travel along the paths
that she cut through the often testosterone-charged
jungle of the American political landscape. Unlike
so many of her fellow female liberals, Ferraro never
begrudged conservative women this benefit of her
work, as her heart was bigger than her politics.
Happy trails, Geraldine Ferraro.