Sarah Palin brags that her kids don't eat dogs

The uber troll would like PETA to "chill" about that picture of Trig

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Senior Writer

Published January 5, 2015 2:54PM (EST)

  (Jeff Malet,
(Jeff Malet,

Proving yet again that if straight up trolling were a superpower, Sarah Palin would be a formidable Marvel character, the former governor of Alaska this weekend defended a photograph of her six-year-old son Trig standing on the family dog in a brief yet spectacularly multilayered display of awfulness.

On January 1, Palin posted a series of photographs of her son, who was born with Down syndrome, hoisting himself to the kitchen counter by using the pet as a stepstool. "May 2015 see every stumbling block turned into a stepping stone on the path forward," she wrote. "Trig just reminded me. He, determined to help wash dishes with an oblivious mama not acknowledging his signs for 'up!', found me and a lazy dog blocking his way. He made his stepping stone." Predictably, not everyone was charmed with the image of a child using a "lazy" animal as a "stepping stone," including Ingrid Newkirk, president of PETA. "PETA simply believes that people shouldn’t step on dogs, and judging by the reaction that we’ve seen to Sarah Palin’s Instagram photo, we’re far from alone in that belief," Newkirk said, a sentiment echoed throughout social media.

But Palin, never one to let a chance to double down on being terrible pass her by, shot back with a weekend Facebook message telling PETA to "Chill. At least Trig didn’t eat the dog" and adding, "Did you go as crazy when your heroic Man-of-Your-Lifetime, Barack Obama, revealed he actually enjoyed eating dead dog meat?"

Because Sarah Palin can't utter a sentence that doesn’t require rigorous fact-checking, let it be clarified that a) PETA, the same group that jumped all over Obama when he killed a fly, doesn't have a particularly strong regard for the president either b) Obama did write in his  "Dreams From My Father" that as a child in Indonesia he was fed dog meat – but described the taste as "tough," and that c) what other kind meat than "dead" is there?

Palin then went on a ranty tangent about "anti-beef screamers blogging hate from your comfy leather chairs" before explaining, "Our pets, including Trig’s best buddy Jill Hadassah, are loved, spoiled and cared for more than some people care for their fellow man whose politics may not mesh with nonsensical liberally failed ways or don’t fit your flighty standards. Jill is a precious part of our world. So is Trig." Oh, did we mention the dog's name is Jill Hadassah – an apparent nod to the wives of Joe Biden and Joe Lieberman? That's right, Sarah Palin seems to have named a dog after two prominent Democratic party women.

It must be exhausting, spending so much of one's energy on a constant quest for targets to level indignant half-truths at. Yet somehow Sarah Palin manages to raise her family and still have time to rage at anybody who questions the wisdom or kindness of letting a child stand on a dog. In short order this week, she used both her son and her pet as props for her own publicity, and then took shots at Barack Obama, PETA, Jill Biden, Hadassah Lieberman, people who sit in chairs, and more. I guess this is what having it all looks like, if you're a failed politician who will do anything for attention. Remember when this person almost had a chance at being the second-in-command of our country? It's good to laugh about it. Now, she's just another busy troll on the Internet, very publicly showing off her warped version of leaning in – one that not very surprisingly involves having very little regard for who's being stepped on.

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Mary Elizabeth Williams is a senior writer for Salon and author of "A Series of Catastrophes & Miracles."

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Peta Sarah Palin Trig Palin