Friday, July 29, 2016

Float On, FLOTUS

I have stayed away from the spectacle of both the Republican and Democratic conventions. The idea that I might find something in either one of these gatherings of the party faithful that would significantly alter my perception of the way the world works or that suddenly the scales would fall from my eyes and I would finally see the Emperor's fancy new suit for what it actually is seems faulty from the get-go. There have been times, in the past, when I have peeked in at the hubbub just to check it out, reaffirming my longstanding beliefs about who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. But like those late-night talk shows that have ceased to be important to me, if something really important or amusing happens, it will be on YouTube the next day.
That's how I missed Michelle Obama's address to the Democratic National Convention. The next day, I heard about how inspiring and soaring her words were. I decided to check it out, and by golly, even after the fact it was stirring. An African-American woman was addressing the assemblage of one of our nation's major political parties not as a token or a stunt. She was there as the First Lady of the United States. She was there as a representative of women and, more to her point, mothers across this great land of ours. It would have been easy enough to toss around the invective that has been standard orating procedure over the past two years. It would have been easy enough for her to simply stand there, as the object of all those things that Herr Trumppenstein holds with such little regard. She spoke of what it means to see the change that is possible in our country. She talked about waking up every morning in a house that was built by slaves.
Wait a minute, says Bill O'Reilly. Let's check the facts on that one. Because we don't want to give this already bleeding heart party any more grist for their mill. "Michelle Obama is essentially correct in citing slaves as builders of the White House, but there were others working as well." Overseers, perhaps? Bill went on: "Slaves that worked there were well-fed and had decent lodgings provided by the government, which stopped hiring slave labor in 1802. However, the feds did not forbid subcontractors from using slave labor. So, Michelle Obama is essentially correct in citing slaves as builders of the White House, but there were others working as well. Got it all? There will be a quiz." Hey, Bill? You just used your bully pulpit (a pulpit used by bullies) to acknowledge that Michelle Obama was correct in her assertion. All that other fluff and nonsense about well-fed and decent lodgings in no way deflects the point she was making. Got it? There will be a quiz.
As for me, I'm just glad that after a minor crisis in confidence by yours truly, order has been restored in the cosmos. Bill O'Reilly is a nutjob. And Michelle Obama is pretty awesome. 

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