Thursday, March 19, 2009

Gag me with Hope!

Deuce linked this Wall Street Journal column by William McGurn:
By choosing Fort Bragg for her first official trip outside the capital last Thursday, Michelle Obama signaled that she will use her position as First Lady to promote one of America's most deserving causes: our military families. Plainly the families loved it. Just look at the smiles on those children as she read them "The Cat in the Hat."
So it was just a little disconcerting the next morning to hear the First Lady explain how she came to this issue during last year's campaign. "I think I was like most Americans," she told ABC News. "Pretty oblivious to the life of military families. Sort of taking it for granted."
Perhaps Mrs. Obama did take these families for granted. Surely, however, it's extraordinary to suggest that "most Americans" did the same.
Right. Because there are no GIs in Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood, they might as well not exist, eh? Yet Mrs. Obama was merely expressing the horrible tendency of elitists to assume that their own experience and their own perspective is universal and normative, whereas the Bible-and-gun-clingers in Appalachia . . .

Well, because the lives of those Other People don't measure up to Hyde Park standards, the elitist needs an explanation for why they don't measure up, an explanation that generally takes the form of a condescending (and politically convenient) assumption:
"Oh, they lack adequate health care and they need better schools and, if only it weren't for the greed and selfishness of those right-wing Republicans, we could turn these shiftless inbred peckerwoods into good and decent people like us!"
This is the whole rationale of Mrs. Obama treating military families as if they were helpless victims, charity cases whose primary needs are (a) more federal money, and (b) lots and lots of pity.

What Mrs. Obama wants is for the wives and children of our troops to embrace victimhood status as their political identity, to think of themselves as unable to cope with adversity and therefore in need of humanitarian intervention by those kind, generous Democrats in Washington.

4 comments:

  1. An interesting, semi-rambling commentary. But couldn't an alternative explanation be... politics? The O administration recently got some bad pub over an effort to make disabled veterans, or their insurance companies, pay their health care costs. So now the First Lady is trotted out to try to distract the public's attention from that PR fiasco and to display how caring and compassionate the Os actually are about military families. Just a thought.

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  2. I was a Navy Wife for 22 years. We raised our daughter in 5 different states (all 4 corners of the Lower 48 plus Hawai'i).

    None of us would trade that experience for ANYTHING the civilian world has to offer. Pity? Save it for the truly pitiable. Respect would be nice, but we don't count on it from overeducated blowhards, no matter how pretty they might be.

    At 23, our daughter is a wife, mother and working woman who believes she's smarter than most of our elected officials, because of the varied experiences in her earlier life.

    I think she might be right.

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  3. Ernst T. SchreiberThu Mar 19, 11:33:00 AM

    Liberal Democrats love the poor ––and want them to stay that way. Without the poor, who would they have to look up to them to see how much they care?

    Liberal Republicans, on the other hand, hate the poor --and want them to stay that way. Without the poor, who would they have to look down on to show how superior they are?

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  4. Absolutely right. The average liberal is so isolated he can't even *imagine* that others live differently than they live... and are - ready yourself for it - HAPPY. :)

    I'm an Army wife of 13 years, and my husband is currently deployed. Pity and condescension are the ultimate slap in the face. We love our life! There is not a job out there that my husband would rather be doing. And he's damn good at it, thankyouverymuch.

    I don't feel the need to be "fixed" by the Missus. We, and our 5 children, have had the opportunity to travel the world as well as the US, and we've gained so much from the different cultures out there.

    Perhaps if the Missus would like to help us 'poor military families,' she might educate her husband on the gigantic insult he's trying to inflict on wounded vets by making them pay for medical care. That is the epitome of WRONG.

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