Right wing critics are fastening onto Michelle Obama and in order to transform her into some wild eyed un-American woman who doesn’t belong in the White House. I have been fascinated how attacks on her resemble those made about Eleanor Roosevelt. Mrs. Roosevelt was always much more liberal than her husband and openly sided with oppressed people and those facing discrimination. Her famous fight to get Marion Anderson to sing in Washington D.C. aroused the fury of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Who can forget, Franklin Roosevelt’s famous remarks to that group which began, “fellow immigrants?Michelle Obama can look forward to one smear after another in the coming years but I have a hunch she will become the symbol of the Obama presidency as the one who identifies with poor people in this nation.
If is is any consolation to Mrs.Obama, the attacks on Eleanor Roosevelt were ongoing and she was charged with having romances, of being a lesbian, and even having an affair with a Negro man– in those days, that was a serious charge. They will dig up anything and everything about Michelle Obama because she is very bright, a fighter, and a person concerned with issues of social justice. They have already distorted her speech about being proud of her husband and America and transforming it into a plug for Barack while leaving out the rest of the sentence.
So, Michelle, read up on the life of Eleanor Roosevelt and learn what she experienced. I was raised in a working class Jewish family and she, much more than her husband, was the one we thought would help us to deal with discrimination. She was always there as a rock of support for the working class even when her husband had to make compromises. So, Mrs. Obama, become the modern Eleanor Roosevelt and never shut up, never cease fighting for human rights, and just ignore the slanders of hate.
P.S. As a teenager, I saw Eleanor Roosevelt when she came to our high school. She told us to fight for human rights and never give up. The audience of about a thousand teenagers were crying when she finished. As she walked down the aisle I reached out and touched her. I hope some day children will want to touch you for a fleeting moment.