We get used to things and eventually accept them as normal. If Michele Bachmann had started running for president without the precedent of Sarah Palin, I don’t think she would have gotten very far. Sarah Palin didn’t gain acceptance in national politics through coming up on her own through caucuses and primaries, and I doubt she ever would have, but from being dumped on us by John McCain. We were forced to watch and listen, over and over again. Now we’ve become inured to attractive women screeching bizarre things as plausible candidates for our highest office. Bachmann is much more articulate than Palin, but the thinking behind those more coherent sentences is just as dumb and dangerous.
If you doubt this, think of gay marriage. As gays began coming out of the closet, and people realized that more of their relatives, friends, and co-workers were gay than they had known, the idea of gay marriage has become much more acceptable. We’ve gotten used to a lot more sex and profane language on TV, when this used to be unacceptable.