Post-Election Reflection: What We Could Have Had

I voted in this election, of course. And I was so excited when Obama was reelected—as were the vast majority of my friends and family. Also, the actors and celebrities whom I follow on Twitter. An Australian actress whom I adore tweeted about watching Obama’s inspiring victory speech while working out at the gym. The entire world was watching us, and I do not have to awkwardly explain that “we tried our best,” or “please don’t hate all of us,” over the internet to my friends in other countries (as I did, as a senior in high school, when Bush was reelected). Our country is continuing to move in the right direction. We still have a President who thinks that gay people, women, and religious minorities are actually people and that zygotes and corporations are not. I almost* couldn’t be more excited.

But we did miss out on a few things that an end to the Obama Presidency and a Romney administration would have meant.

First of all, a Romney White House would probably have meant an end to the First Lady’s crusade against childhood happiness. Because seriously. I am so tired of her Disgusting Food And Miserable Activities initiative. You know what? Elementary school is Hell on Earth. You’re a powerless, miserable child whose entire day, at home and at school, is planned out by adults. The one highlight of a typical third grader’s day? Lunch. People complain about cafeteria food, but if you live in a household where hot dogs and pizza and fried anything is a rare treat, lunch in elementary school is this magical time when you get to eat delicious food and socialize with your peers—or read a book. Food is happiness in its purest physical form, and I, for one, want for children to be happy.

I trust that I do not even have to explain to people why jumping rope outside or playing some kind of sportsball in your backyard is, even if you enjoy it, a hideously inferior activity to anything that you might do indoors. Legos, action figures (or Barbies, etc), books, television, video games—children today have so many delightful ways of entertaining themselves that have nothing to do with the insect-ridden, overly warm, overly humid, exposed, way-too-bright outdoors. Playing outdoors is for barbarians. As a child, I only did it when forced to. And I was forced to.

Guess what? Forcing children to play outside and to eat that gross green stuff that grows in dirt? It does not work. My family only drank water at dinner, we had a “salad night” at least once a week, and my mother used even meaty foods as mules to smuggle even more vegetables into our gullets. In my complaints about my (less than pleasant) childhood, this does not even make the top ten, but it’s not something that I remember fondly, either.

And then I went off to college, where I slowly began to realize that I did not have to eat like I had been required to for all of my life. If I made double-stuffed Oreos (or, more likely, quadruple-stuffed), I could discard the gross chocolate wafers that had no crème on them for a roommate to eat. You can control your weight with how much you eat, and how often (plus riding an exercise bike in front of a television); you do not have to make eating a miserable activity, even some of the time.

As an adult, to quote the fabulous Leslie Knope of Parks and Recreation, “I stand by my decision to avoid salad . . . and other disgusting things.”

Okay, so the second thing that we missed out on that we would have had with a Romney Presidency: Mitt Romney Sucks Pass It On. It was a simple post made on Tumblr. For those of you unfamiliar, Tumblr is a blog site where users can upload images, text, or even music or video, which can easily be “liked” and “reblogged” by others on Tumblr. Personally, I tend to take screencaps from shows that I watch, add text from the scene in question, and that makes up the vast majority of my original posts to Tumblr. My most popular original post to Tumblr is from a few weeks ago (taken from ABC’s Once Upon A Time), has 120 “notes” (a number derived from the likes and reblogs that the post has received, mostly from strangers). It is not unusual to see posts with several thousands notes.

One simple, unassuming text post titled: “Mitt Romney Sucks, Pass It On” did not include anything beyond a title. It has received over ten million notes. That is, for the record, a lot. It is, to the best of anyone’s knowledge, the single most popular post ever on Tumblr. With a Mitt Romney Presidency, imagine how many likes and reblogs it could have gotten over four years.

Third, but not last, is all of the poor hurt feelings in our neighboring country of Canada. Just look at this graphic (also on Tumblr), depicting Canada’s disappointment that pro-Obama Americans will not be flocking across the border to a country that has gun control, universal health care, same-sex marriage, and the right to choose. This picture is adorable.

Finally, and most seriously, a Romney White House might have meant a serious reduction among the crazies. If you’ve watched NCIS or Law & Order or just about any other crime drama, you are probably familiar with the ironically named “Patriot” movement or similar movements. These are whackadoo militia-types who are paranoid and crazy. They do not register the births of their children or socialize them normally (even beyond the normal crippling social isolation that comes with homeschooling). They do not vote or obey speed limits or traffic lights. They are, in essence, a bunch of terrifying, well-armed anarchists who often have some very racist views.

Now, if you know someone who is a gun-nut, that’s just weird. But, weird like my obsession with superheroes. Admittedly, my obsession with superheroes does not really equip me to kill people, but my point is that these “Patriots” (who do not acknowledge the legitimacy of the US government) are scary and you should not just assume that someone who is super into guns is one of them.

The “Patriot” movement sprouted up while Clinton was in office, went down when Bush was in office, and then cropped back up with a vengeance when Obama was first elected. In other words, if the political Right is unhappy with the President, the absolute fringe of the fringe right loses their minds.

If Romney had won, these lunatics might have taken four years off to only be normal amounts of crazy.

 

*The absolute Most Beautiful Human On Earth retweeted one of my tweets on Election Day, which kind of almost completely overshadowed the entire election for me because I have “very sensible” priorities.



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Happy Birthday, Mr. President (And Me)!

photo of president obama pictures photos
I’ve already talked about my love for Michelle, and now it’s time to talk about my love for Barack Obama. Or, Barry, as I like to call him. Barry turned 51 years-old on August 4th and he celebrated by playing golf, going to a party in Chicago (for campaign donators) and then he’ll relax at Camp David.

My birthday is in August too—I feel like that means Barack Obama and I could celebrate our birthdays together. I’m not a fan of “duo birthdays” under normal circumstances, because I feel like they’re either a bummer (because one person isn’t getting the attention they deserve) or smarmy (couples…I swear couples that celebrate their birthdays together are the worst…get your own identity!). But Barry and I wouldn’t be like that…we would be the exception to the rule.

I imagine that we would play golf and he would do very well, naturally, and I would suck. He would shake his head after I (try) to drive my ball and then tell me what I was doing wrong. We’d finish the game and hop in the golf cart where we would joke about how awful I am at golf. “Golfing isn’t my thing, Barry!” I would say to him as he coolly drives the cart along the course. “Well, now it’s time we did something that’s more ‘your thing’ don’t you think?” He would say to me, not taking his eyes off the road but leaning is head toward mine so I know he’s genuine. I would smile and think to myself, “Man—Barry’s the best.”

We would get back to the club have some iced tea and lunch then head back to the house to meet up with Michelle, shower, and dress for the evening. We’d go to our obligations (parties for donors, media requests, shake hands and kiss babies, etc.) and at the …

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Michelle Obama: Feminist Icon

photo of michelle obama pictures
Have we talked about how awesome Michelle Obama is? I feel like we have. I’m not going to get political and talk about how Mitt Romney made huge gaffes while he was in London and Michelle was the Queen Bee while she’s in London (though all of that is true), I’m going to talk about all the good the First Lady is doing right now and how she is a perfect feminist icon.

As part of her “Let’s Move” campaign, the First Lady is in London inspiring kids to get active. She was on the soccer field with David Beckham and a bunch of kids while running, kicking, and looking fabulous. Exercising. Having fun. That’s my favorite part of Michelle Obama—she will Dougie, play soccer, talk trash on Oprah, plant a garden, and be poised, classy, and flawless all the while.

I mean, honestly. The woman wore Converse and played tug-of-war. Let’s see Ann Romney get off her very expensive (and I’m sure pure bred) high-horse and do that. Michelle Obama is the perfect picture of feminism. She looks great, has tons of power, is charitable, and is completely approachable.

I remember watching Oprah (the Obamas were on, okay? Like I’m not going to watch a program when the President is on it—it’s my duty as a writer…look I don’t have to explain myself to you guys) and she brought up the “birther” argument. Barack kind of shrugged his shoulders, rolled his eyes and said something like, “You can’t let it get to you. I wasn’t angry,” and Michelle looked at him and said, “Pfft I was!” That was the moment I fell for the first lady. That’s right—she got angry, someone was talking crap about her man. First Lady or not, Michelle Obama is clearly a ride or die chick and you better not talk about her man.

Michelle has never struck me as someone that “needed” Barack. She seems like the kind of woman that says things like, “Fine, pack your bags I don’t care.” Just a tough, no-nonsense broad, and I like that about our first lady. I relate to that—that is America to me.  Michelle Obama is the perfect embodiment of Lady Liberty herself, standing draped in fabulous clothes but not afraid to take out her earrings, pull off a stiletto and slap a ho if they step out of line.



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Push-Up Battles Aren’t Just For The Boys …

Feminism is about being strong, and that means both mentally and physically. That being said, it was a treat to see Ellen DeGeneres and Michelle Obama in a pushup battle right on television, and here’s why: these two women are extremely successful and both are very outspoken about being healthy. Michelle Obama is seen as a fashion icon and Ellen models for Cover Girl. The latter qualities are very girl-girly qualities … models of fashion and makeup. So naturally, to see these two women get down on the ground in their expensive clothes and carefully-applied makeup just to have a push-up battle, was amazing.

When you think of “push-up battle” you think of big guys, glistening with sweat, grimacing as they pump up and down trying to prove their manhood. However, Ellen and Michelle flipped that on its head – these two were talking smack, taking off their jackets, and on national TV battled it out. Their makeup never budged, and every hair remained perfectly in place. It reminds me of that saying “Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but she did it backwards and in heels.”

It is said that women who exude “manly behaviors are less likely to be promoted in the work place,” and there was even a recent episode of the hit FOX show “The New Girl” in which a character’s ball-busting lawyer girlfriend tells lead character Jess “if I talked the way you do at work, no one would take me seriously.” She was implying that Jess is far too sweet and girly to be thought of as anything other than “a cute chick.”

This push-up battle and that episode of “The New Girl” both show that girls can be tough and strong and pretty and delicate all at the same time. Michelle Obama and Ellen can run their own shows, start charities, keep their spouses and maintain their families, all while looking great and kicking ass while doing so. What an example, right?



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