When you're a provincial premier during an economic slowdown, you could find the cure for cancer and still draw criticism.
That was the case with Christy Clark who found herself under attack for an off-the-cuff remark made in a radio interview just prior to New Year's.
In a live interview from Courtenay, an announcer asked her "what it's like being an MILF?" (Ask your kids what this means or rent a copy of American Pie for a further explanation.)
"You know, I take that as a compliment ... you know, it's one of those things, better a MILF than a cougar."
Open mouth, insert foot.
The station that aired the interview, 98.9 Jet FM, was obviously trying in vain to be like Howard Stern, the famous American shock jock. The
difference is Stern has a sense of
humour and often takes on humanitarian causes. He is often a pig, but with a purpose.
Clark wasn't on the radio to plug a new movie, sell a book, push a CD or to make herself a bigger celebrity. She's attempting to lead our province.
Clark's critics are now barking that she's anti-female and it's another reason why she trails the NDP's Adrian Dix in the polls among female voters.
Clark was asked an unfair question and was caught off guard. If there's any criticism of the premier from this episode, it's that she's not quick on her toes. Clark probably would have been best to walk off the air.
And who is her publicist that set up the interview with this rock station? Did he or she do their homework?
Voters do deserve to see the human side of their elected officials and radio is in the entertainment business.
Perhaps a fairer question would have been who her favourite member of One Direction is or which Desperate Housewives character she's closest to in personality.
The interviewer would never have asked a similar question of Dix, Gordon Campbell or Bill Vander Zalm and should be ashamed of himself.
If ever there was a time for a two-week disciplinary suspension, this would be it.
As for Clark, it's a blip on the radar that will pass. There are many things you can criticize her for. This episode is not one of them.
- James M. Miller, Penticton Herald Managing Editor