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Palin ‘acquitted’ herself with ‘Today’ show appearance

Sarah Palholds newspaper as she co-hosts NBC News' 'Today' show New York Tuesday April 3 2012. Palwas much-hyped guest co-host

Sarah Palin holds a newspaper as she co-hosts NBC News' "Today" show in New York on Tuesday, April 3, 2012. Palin was the much-hyped guest co-host on NBC's "Today," going head-to-head against former "Today" anchor Katie Couric, who this week is subbing on "Good Morning America" at her current workplace, ABC. (AP Photo/NBC, Peter Kramer)

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Updated: May 5, 2012 8:19AM

Sarah Palin didn’t really “co-host” the “Today” show on Tuesday, but she acquitted herself quite well in her extended, semi-co-hosting gig.

Looking every bit as attractive as, say Tina Fey or Julianne Moore, Palin gamely poked fun at herself, pretending to be overwhelmed by a stack of newspapers as Matt Lauer crowed, “Oh man, she’s doing her homework!”

In a segment about Ashton Kutcher playing Steve Jobs, Palin keenly noted, “Do any of you have any experience with people being paid a lot of money to pretend like they’re you?”

Whether she was voicing support for any GOP candidate over President Barack Obama, commenting on the media’s portrayal of Jessica Simpson’s pregnancy weight-gain or marveling over Tori Spelling’s Wheel of Brie, Palin came across as more relaxed and somewhat less shrill than when she’s on some satellite feed, regurgitating generalizations about evil liberals. But she still has this disconcerting way of sounding like she’s shouting even when she’s not shouting.

The most telling moment came when Palin offered this insight about politics:

“I would warn voters to never put their faith wholly in an individual, in a politician--because a politician will disappoint you.”

I just wish Palin had downed a half-dozen Mimosas and with Kathie Lee & Hoda. Then we’d be talking real Must-See TV.

Doing the Wrong Thing

Of all the dumb things said and done since the tragic shooting death of Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, one of the dumbest acts came from filmmaker Spike Lee, who retweeted to more than 250,000 people what he thought was the home address of George Zimmerman.

The 28-year-old George Zimmerman who shot Martin is no relation to the 26-year-old William George Zimmerman, son of Elaine and David McClain. Lee Tweeted the address of the McClains, even though their son doesn’t even live with them and he’s not the “right” guy anyway. They’re just an elderly couple who had to leave their house after Lee tweeted their address.

For days upon days, Lee was silent about his egregious mistake. Finally, after the McClains had filed a lawsuit, a settlement was reached and Lee apologized.

“I deeply apologize to the McClain family for retweeting their address,” said Lee on Twitter. “It was a mistake. Please leave the McCains in peace.”

Lee also called the McClains to personally (or at least telephonically) apologize.

“He was really kind,” Elaine McClain told the AP. “[Y]ou could tell he really felt bad about it. And it was just a slip, and I just know that he really, really has been concerned.”

OK, end of story, right?

Just one thing. From the moment Lee shared that address with more than a quarter-million people, virtually all of the criticism received has been focused on Lee essentially broadcasting the wrong address.

How about the fact he wanted everyone to know George Zimmerman’s address in the first place? What purpose was that supposed to serve? We’ve yet to hear Lee acknowledge it’s irresponsible to basically say to the world, “Here’s the home address of the guy accused of shooting a teenager in one of the most incendiary controversies of our time.”

Yes, I know we live in an age where you can get just anybody’s home address if you do a little digging around. And if someone had gone to Zimmerman’s home and committed any sort of crime, it’s that person who’s responsible for his actions — not the individual who gives out the address.

But still. It was a terrible thing to blast out the address of a couple in their 70s who had nothing to do with the Trayvon Martin case — but it would have been just as terrible, and could have resulted in even more grief, had Lee given out the correct address.

Absolutely nothing good could have come from that.

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