From People Who Know Her
This page came into existence for a very important and fundamental reason: In politics no holds are barred. Anyone can say anything they want to, true or not. Some people of all political stripes will say anything to demonize a perceived political opponent. And what may be worse, some people pick up on such statements, believe them and repeat them as gospel. It is most immoral, regardless of our political affiliation, to use misstatements to destroy the political career of another human being. Yet the propaganda mill does just that. Just now, the Republican mill is in high gear. In a sense that is great news--they are running scared that a revolution in American politics may be in the making.
Michelle Obama gave a speech in Milwaukee in which she said:
|"People in this country are ready for change, and hungry for a different kind of politics, and for the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback,"|
Simple enough, and we believe beautifully said. One of us on this web site remembers every president from Roosevelt onwards, and that person, also felt hope for the first time in this campaign, and he is not black. He was astonished to read what the barracudas made of that simple, beautiful and patriotic statement. The barracudas took the bold italic part out of its political context.
Michelle is nothing if not courageous and open. With Hillary out of the picture, she is now the target of the barracuda's vicious sexism aimed at killing the witch. Apparently, Witch Hunting is not quite dead in these United States! Specifically, Rush Limbaugh, E.D. Hill (Fox News Anchor) and others circulate wild assertions as fact, fanning the flames of bigotry and sexism.
While we detest using the word evil, there are times no other word fits, and this is one of them.
So let's move on to some reality.
First Lady--Laura Bush: "I think she probably meant I'm 'more proud,' you know, is what she really meant," Bush told ABC News. "You have to be very careful in what you say. I mean, I know that, and that's one of the things you learn and that's one of the really difficult parts both of running for president and for being the spouse of the president, and that is, everything you say is looked at and in many cases misconstrued."
Bill Burton: “Of course Michelle is proud of her country, which is why she and Barack talk constantly about how their story wouldn't be possible in any other nation on Earth. What she meant is that she’s really proud at this moment because for the first time in a long time, thousands of Americans who’ve never participated in politics before are coming out in record numbers to build a grassroots movement for change." Bill Burton is Obama campaign spox.
A final bit of reality--perhaps a bit off center of this page:
Maureen Dowd of the New York Times said: “I wince a bit when Michelle Obama chides her husband as a mere mortal — comic routine that rests on the presumption that we see him as a god ... But it may not be smart politics to mock him in a way that turns him from the glam JFK into the mundane Gerald Ford, toasting his own English muffin. If all Senator Obama is peddling is the Camelot mystique, why debunk this mystique?”
[We agree there is mystique, but listen to the man's words, and one has to conclude there is great substance there. Much of it was undoubtedly formed when he was a child, living in non-American cultures just long enough to get in touch with alternate ways of thinking. And that resonates with what this man has accomplished in the most remarkable and creative primary campaign in American history. We can look forward to more of the same if he wins the White House. So who is Michelle?]
Wikipedia "Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama (born January 17, 1964) is an American lawyer and the wife of Illinois senator Barack Obama, the 2008 Democratic presumptive nominee for President. She was born and grew up on the South Side of Chicago, and she was educated at Princeton University and Harvard Law School. After completing her formal education, she returned to Chicago and went to work for the law firm Sidley Austin, on the staff of the Mayor of Chicago Richard M. Daley, and for the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Hospitals. She is the sister of Craig Robinson, men's basketball coach at Oregon State University. She met Barack when he came to work for Sidley Austin. The Obamas live on Chicago's South Side, choosing to remain there rather than moving to Washington, D.C.
"She and her brother, Craig (who is 16 months older), skipped the second grade. Michelle mostly traces her roots to pre-revolutionary African Americans in the American South; much of her family still resides in the state of South Carolina. Michelle graduated from Whitney Young High School in 1981 and went on to major in sociology and minor in African American studies at Princeton University, where she graduated cum laude with an A.B. in 1985.
"At Princeton, Michelle challenged the teaching methodology for French because she felt that it should be more conversational. As part of her requirements for graduation, she wrote a thesis entitled, "Princeton-Educated Blacks and the Black Community. She obtained her J.D. degree from Harvard Law School in 1988. While at Harvard, she participated in political demonstrations advocating the hiring of professors who are minorities. Her brother Craig was the fourth leading scorer in Princeton University's men's basketball history, and is both a former Brown University's men's basketball coach and the current Oregon State Beavers men's basketball coach.
"Michelle met Barack Obama when they were the only two African Americans at their law firm and she was assigned to mentor him while he was a summer associate. Their relationship started with a business lunch and then a community organization meeting where he first impressed her. The couple's first date was to the Spike Lee movie Do the Right Thing. The couple married in October 1992, and they have two daughters, Malia Ann (born 1998) and Natasha (known as Sasha) (born 2001). Throughout the campaign Michelle has made a "commitment to be away overnight only once a week — to campaign only two days a week and be home by the end of the second day" for their two children."
This sketch is surely not complete. For those who wish to know more, the links below are starting points:
Meet Michelle -- Provides a video
Thesis on racial divide -- Princeton has withdrawn her thesis from public view we believe for two likely reasons: 1) Its mere existence could lead to national racial tensions ignited by statements taken out of context and misinterpreted, and 2) as a work in progress on who she was, it no longer accurately reflects the person she has become, and that might unfairly limit the person she could still come to be. Of course Princeton may have other motives, such as need to avoid backlash for their own sluggish march toward fully integrated classrooms.
Michelle on Barack -- video on how she fell in love with Barack
Who is Michelle? -- Conclusion: "Like any savvy politician, she'd rather take her story to the voters without the filter of the press. In her stump speech, she uses her own life as a rebuke to those who have said that she and her husband aren't ready for the White House. She tells the story of a 10-year-old girl she met in a beauty parlor in South Carolina who told her that if Barack wins the White House, 'it means I can imagine anything for myself.'
"That story, Michelle says, was just like her own: 'She could have been me. Because the truth is, I'm not supposed to be here, standing here. I'm a statistical oddity. Black girl, brought up on the South Side of Chicago. Was I supposed to go to Princeton? No … They said maybe Harvard Law was too much for me to reach for. But I went, I did fine. And I'm certainly not supposed to be standing here. Whatever lingering doubts Michelle Obama may still have, moving into the White House would go a long way toward putting them to rest."
Blog Posts -- Google Blog Posts, over 57,000 of them! (as of 21 June 2009)
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Posted by RoadToPeace on Saturday, June 21, 2008.