Thursday, December 22, 2011

Congressman Calls First Lady Fat

You'd think the country has big problems that would command law-makers attention. Not so for a Wisconsin congressman who was caught talking "very loud" about the First Lady's anatomy -- "she lectures us on eating right while she has a large posterior herself."

Jim Sesenbrenner was at a church auction December 10 when according to a 72 year old retiree he started taking shots at Michelle Obama. The witness told the events as follows: "He then talked about how different first ladies have had different projects -- Laura Bush and literacy -- and he named two or three others... And then he said, 'And Michelle Obama, her project is obesity. And look at her big butt.'"

Rush Limbaugh calls the First Lady fat all the time. Do you wonder why Limbaugh and other right wingers often disparage her in this way? Well, as always, things boil down to racial issues. Some blogger say the attacks are because the First Lady is black.  Some say that black women have "big butts" and claim that white women have "flat butts". Regardless, most agree that the congressman's comments were inappropriate and insensitive. I often wonder why I ever thought that the First Family would be treated with respect. Wishful thinking I guess.

Chicago Sun Times reporter Lynn Sweet reports that Sesenbrenner has sent a written apology to Michelle Obama.

Follow-up :
Akiba Solomon's article for The Daily Beast offers a relevant point of view on this story:
"Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner and Rush Limbaugh make asses of themselves when they trash talk about Michelle Obama’s appearance instead of frankly addressing the issues she raises about nutrition and health care."                   
And that’s what’s scary to a paunchy, sexist trash-talker like Limbaugh. He simply can’t bear to see a woman be proud of what her body actually looks like when she’s eating nutritious foods, splurging occasionally without apology, exercising regularly, and sporting biceps that make his look like mammoth knees.
I also think Sensenbrenner, Limbaugh, and their folk are afraid of how this country’s first black First Lady is changing the centuries-old, dehumanizing scripts about women of color in media and beyond.
Every time Michelle Obama from Chi-Town jumps Double-Dutch with schoolkids, hits the hula hoop, teaches us how to dougie, shows Desmond Tutu how to do a proper pushup or does a record number of jumping jacks, she chips away at Ronald Reagan’s fake welfare queen, Hollywood’s jolly mammies, and Jackie magazine’s “niggabitch” with a “ghetto ass.”

Clearly, these petty, dirty old men have been gawking at the First Lady’s behind when they could have been studying and debating Let’s Move policies.

No comments:

Post a Comment