Saturday, November 15, 2008

All The Things That Women Are Interested In.

Back in June, I observed that political machinations reverted into the oldest stereotypes - namely that women should ONLY be depicted as wives or mothers. Unfortunately now that the transition is in place it would appear that we are headed back in that direction with Michelle Obama's recent visit to the White House with Laura Bush.

In an interview with CNN's WH Correspondent Elaine Quijano, Bush describes the meeting:

QUIJANO: The role of the First Lady is certainly something that I'm sure you discussed with Mrs. Obama earlier this week. How did that visit go? And could you tell us any anecdotes?

BUSH: Well it went great. It was very private, really. It was really much more, I think, two mothers talking about home more in this visit, because of course I showed her the rooms that are our girls' rooms now that I think are the perfect rooms for her girls when they move there.

We talked more about really making the White House a home for a family. And what I know from having lived here and from visiting my mother-in-law when she made this family a home and from reading about all the other families that have lived here is this house really can be a home. And I know that they'll make it that way for their little girls.

QUIJANO: Certainly, there must be some increased pressure, a lot of scrutiny, of course, living in the White House. I was wondering, did you share any advice with her as a mother who has been through it, having had two daughters spending some formative years?

BUSH: Not really. I think I showed her the closets, I showed her all the things that women are interested in. But I didn't try to give her a lot of advice. I know she knows that she can make it home.

And that's what she wants to do.

QUIJANO: Last question then. Your husband, the day after the election, talked about it being a stirring sight to see the Obamas because of the historic nature of having the nation's first African-American president. I wonder if you could share your thoughts on that, as well?

BUSH: Well I also think it's very, very important. I think it's important for American history. I think it's a message to everybody in the United States of what's possible. But it's also a message around the world because I know, because I heard from them, that there were leaders in the -- around the world who didn't think the United States would elect an African-American man. And so, I think it's a really important message about our own democracy to people around the world.

QUIJANO: Mrs. Bush, thank you so much.

BUSH: Thanks a lot. Thanks a lot.


And because its Friday and I cannot think of something positive to say about the meeting, or how pathetic this sounds in the year 2008, I'd like to think that the end of the meeting went something like this:

Maybe her and Michelle burned one in the Rose Garden and then Laura showed her where she grows her own.

Laura: The Secret Service NEVER comes in here. I tell George it’s where the government keeps Noriega and only Cheney is allowed in there. He just nods and pretends he knows it. HEY! Why don’t I just leave the equipment and sh*t for you?

Michelle: Girl, SOLID!

(fist bump between the two)


half nelson said...

Your thread on mydd seems to be dead, I wish I had seen it yesterday. It's a great topic.

I had similar thoughts as I observed the new, improved Michelle during the campaign. It seemed to me they were eager to portray her as a supportive wife rather than the accomplished career woman that she is.

I suspect her role will be dictated by the fact that she has young kids. They still need lots of supervision and attention and someone has to be there for them. With the numerous demands on the president's time, that leaves Mrs. Obama. They can hire surrogates of course, but I'm sure they don't want to completely abandon the kids in order to serve our country. For Nancy Reagan, it was different. Her kids were adults when her husband was elected.

Someone on mydd suggested that it would nice if the FL pursued her own career, in the way Sherri Blair did. As I recall, Howard Dean's wife(Judith?) is a physician wanted to do exactly that. She basically stayed out of his campaign for a while, but people didn't seem to like that. I think Americans have a different ideal of the role of a political wife.

dvkenned said...

do you have a copy of what you posted on mydd? i never saw it and am interested in reading it.

dvkenned said...

found it:

canadian gal said...

great point half nelson, great point.