One of the speakers at Tuesday’s Pennsylvania Conference for Women was former first lady Michelle Obama. Mrs. Obama, who seemingly never fails to inject the issue of race into every conversation, didn’t fail to do so once again.
Watch the video of Michelle Obama’s speech at the conference:
With microphone in hand, Mrs. Obama recounted her memories of the first State of the Union address she attended. Needless to say, what she found most memorable was the intolerable whiteness of the Republican side of the aisle.
Mrs. Obama stated, “At the State of the Union address … when you are in the room what you can see is this real dichotomy. It’s a feeling of color almost. On one side of the room is literally gray and white. Literally, that is the color palette on one side of the room. On the other side of the room, there are yellows and blues and whites and greens. Physically, there’s a difference in color, in the tone, because on one side all men, all white, on the other side some woman, some people of color.”
Why does Mrs. Obama think that her gaze across the gallery at the State of the Union revealed a (relative) lack of women or non-white folks? Are women and minorities being actively dissuaded from becoming Republicans or adopting conservative views? Or could it have something to do with the message conveyed to women and minorities on a daily basis, that if they are not Democrats, or if they do not espouse liberal views, they are sell-outs or working against their own interests?
Mere days before Mrs. Obama’s appearance at Tuesday’s conference, she spoke at the Inbound 2017 Conference in Boston.
At the event, the former first lady explained, “Any woman who voted against Hillary Clinton, voted against their own voice. What does it mean for us as women that we look at these two candidates as women, and many of us said, ‘That guy, he’s better for me, his voice is more true to me.’ Well, to me, that just says you don’t like your voice, you like the thing you’re told to like…”
In other words, if you are not a white male, voting against the Democrat, voting against the woman, is by definition voting against your own interests.
Of course, there have been plenty of folks who have been neither male or white, who have embraced the conservative message. Their ranks include Herman Cain, Jan Brewer, and American Conservative Union Chairman Al Cardenas, to name but a few.
Michelle Obama still seems unable to understand that diversity of opinion is not simply a matter of identity politics. Some things never change.