Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Seriously, if you could Madonna only one of these two children, which one would you choose? Trying to measure and compare the relative cuteness might burn your synapses.
On a less cute note -- and I'm just sayin' -- but is it possible, maybe, just maybe, that the Obamas, who've steadfastly refused to exploit their little girls through election season, who've emphasized that they want these kids to be kids, made a strategic choice to, umm, straighten out their hair in anticipation of the big stage? In other pictures, the little ones rock braids, curls, faux-dreads, and tied-back naturals (see here, here and here), but now they're hair's decidedly less, shall we say, ethnic.
I'm not prepared to actually do a timeline analysis of pictures of the girls through the last couple of years and trace their hairstyles, so maybe I'm way off base here, but given the fact that in her speech Michelle Obama announced her unqualified patriotism, defined herself as wife/mother/daughter/sister (not as lawyer and community leader), and made every effort to counter, if implicitly, all charges of militancy unfairly lobbed at her, I think it's fair to say that last night she was concerned primarily with stagecraft, with presenting herself as a First Lady and the girls as potential First Daughters. We the electorate are dumb, we are lazy, and we are subconsciously racist -- we don't think it's inappropriate for our President's blonde underage daughter to cavort drunkenly at Smith Point, but we will not allow human sunshine herself to play double dutch on the South Lawn if she does so with black people's hair.
Now, if the Obamas made a strategic decision to straighten the girls' hair, I don't fault them for it -- I think it's sad and I feel bad for them that they have to, but they're right to do it. You make moral compromises if you want to be President. This is just one of them. Michelle, Sasha, and Malia Obama will be iconic stereotype-defying black women one day, but they live in a country that won't let them go overboard with the blackness before getting there.