Comments on: Simply perfect! http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/ History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present Mon, 22 Sep 2014 04:23:22 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 By: Limp “satire” begets more limpness : Historiann : History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-42091 Thu, 24 Jul 2008 15:22:34 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-42091 [...] it was pushed by Republicans, not Democrats.  And, please–who would you rather be:  Michelle O. or Cindy M.?)  Or it proves that people will say absolutely anything about Democratic candidates for the [...]

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By: Rad readr http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2693 Wed, 12 Mar 2008 06:12:40 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2693 But aren’t we being postethnic now? Wasn’t the Obama campaign mad today that Ferraro invoked race? I love it. He is both postethnic, and thus appeals to certain voters, but he is also black, and thus pulls 91 percent among black voters in mississippi. Is Michelle postethnic too?

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2526 Mon, 10 Mar 2008 02:06:52 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2526 Well, the framing of the CNN story was “Can Cindy McCain really be this perfect?” I would argue that it’s all too human to do some of the things she’s done, but it hardly qualifies her for accusations of “perfection.” Especially since her party has been on its high horse about 1) “family values,” and 2) locking up people for minor drug offenses.

I thought that story was quite interesting juxtaposed with Michelle Obama’s flawless record of academic and professional achievement, and yet somehow she gets accused of being too big for her britches.

But, according to the rules of our culture, nothing you do if you’re a rich, white girl will ever sully your assumed “perfection,” (unless perhaps you’re *too ambitious*), and nothing you do as a black Princeton and Harvard Law grad will remove the suspicion that you’re an entitled-seeming outsider.

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By: David http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2522 Mon, 10 Mar 2008 00:40:10 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2522 I agree with a lot of what you are trying to say, but I think the pejorative emphasis is at times misplaced. To me, it says nothing negative about Cindy McCain that she was heir to a fortune, married a man who was eighteen years her senior (whom she met while he was still married) or that she used drugs. I gather nothing negative from any of that information. I also don’t think it reflects poorly on Laura Bush that she ran a stop sign as a high schooler and killed a friend. I don’t think that puts “blood on her hands,” at least in the pejorative way that phrase is usually used.

Would others have been treated differently, given this information? Absolutely, and that’s the problem. The behavior itself is not the problem.

To me, I already have every reason in the world to dislike Cindy McCain after she said she is “always proud of [her] country.” That’s far more offensive to me than shacking up with an older man who is separated from his wife.

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By: ortho stice http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2499 Sun, 09 Mar 2008 20:01:57 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2499 Historiann, I know what would have happened if a seventeen-year-old Michelle Obama, while driving through Texas, caused a car accident that killed a white man.

Laura’s whiteness and class connections saved her from getting acquainted with Texas’ tough penal system.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2498 Sun, 09 Mar 2008 19:48:50 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2498 David, Yes–Laura Bush killed a fellow high school student as a teenager when she ran a stop sign.

http://www.snopes.com/politics/bush/laura.asp

Just imagine if Michelle Obama had done that, or Hillary Clinton, or Rosalind Carter. (But apparently, Cindy McCain and Laura Bush can do whatever they want so long as they remain sufficiently submissive–and IOKIYAR, y’know.)

Rad and Clio–I haven’t given up on the notion that we might have a first Laddie instead of a First Lady. (But that’s another kettle of fish entirely!)

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By: Clio Bluestocking http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2489 Sun, 09 Mar 2008 16:26:17 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2489 How about “Lady” C? A former president of the United States?

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By: David Jones http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2488 Sun, 09 Mar 2008 16:18:09 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2488 Laura Bush has blood on her hands?

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By: Rad Readr http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2487 Sun, 09 Mar 2008 16:04:51 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2487 Well, I am very disappointed that you left out by far the most controversial and interesting of the first uhm, “lady” candidates — have you given up the race? Is Wyoming more important than Ohio? Nebraska more important than Texas? South Carolina more important than California? Let’s look at it this way– a little drug problem can’t touch a thong problem. And Princeton/Harvard “entitlement” is not nearly as interesting as the return of Paula Jones. Could Bill be the first lady who has it out for the ladies? (that last line might get me into trouble) –as far as some of your other points, I agree completely, “entitlement” is not the right word.

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By: Historiann http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/comment-page-1/#comment-2391 Sat, 08 Mar 2008 18:22:35 +0000 http://www.historiann.com/2008/03/07/simply-perfect/#comment-2391 GayProf–I understand your resentment. But, an activist first lady in the mold of Hillary Clinton (or even Jackie Kennedy, if we consider her supervision of White House restoration and historic preservation) offers a great deal of unpaid labor to the presidential administration. Whatever you think of their work, they’re held up to a great deal of public scrutiny, and they are expected nowadays to have an agenda and a calendar official appearances. Yet, as I understand it, they’re paid nothing, although they do have a budget and a staff. I agree with you about Laura Bush–I think that’s a case where temperament and political expedience met happily to make her much less useful than a coffee mug!

Michelle Obama will be a first lady in the mold of Hillary Clinton, I am sure–although it’s strange that the New Yorker article (among many of its other bizarre features) never once suggested that Hillary Clinton was a trailblazer of a predecessor for someone like M.O. (After all–they’re both attorneys whose incomes supported their families while their husbands were in public service.) I guess what struck me most about the article–and this may ratify your resentment GP–is that it suggests that the role and expectations of first ladies haven’t changed really at all, despite the fact that we’re now seeing generations of women who are very highly educated and accomplished apart from their husbands’ political careers. The article doesn’t question that at all–rather, the angle is “how is this uppity, bossy woman going to deal with the expectations we have of how first ladies should behave?”

But, like I said, it’s been all downhill at that rag since the Tina Brown years…

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