She’s not like the First Ladies we’ve known before, but to be fair, the First Ladies we have known are a fairly eclectic often eccentric collection of women described as reclusive, enigmatic, overwhelmed, overly criticized and underpaid. Many are remembered for something that won them the country’s adoration, affection, sympathy, disapproval, disgust or disdain. Otherwise they are forgotten and quite a few are.
First Ladies may receive a lot of unfair scrutiny doing a job President Obama recently complained was tough and unpaid. What’s more presidents wives are expected to respond to inasty blurbs with grace and numinous wisdom. Something Hillary and Michele were never too good at.
Few First Ladies are as iconic and captivating as JFKs regal bride, whose beauty, high bred gentility and traumatic, tragic life is an example of America’s ironic burden for those who are chosen yet cursed by great fame.
Maybe beloved Jaqueline Kennedy, one of the famous First Ladies, would not be so admired if the bullets hadn’t shattered her husband’s head all over the lap of her fashionable summer dress in that convertible as it drove through Dallas that awful day. She was, after all an elite, spoiled girl who spent a fortune on fancy designer clothes, redecorating the White House and life long protection from secret serviceman. Her high cost, jet set lifestyle was escalating beyond her means as an American icon from well to do roots who was part of the Kennedy clan, so she married the worlds richest, possibly most homely man, Aristotle Onassis. He claimed her like a fabulously rare bauble, added her to his collection only to discover she was was going to cost more than he thought when they divorced not long after the nuptials. Jackie O made off with a sizable chunk of his fortune. Many would call her a gold digger or worse if she wasn’t the widow of JFK.
1Grace Under Pressure, Discretion and Appeasing Public
Because she was brave and beautiful as she addressed a mourning nation with her murdered husband’s blood all over her perfect dress, Americans forgave Jackie for all of her excess, including being photographed nude on the millionaire’s yacht which was part of the tabloid assault upon her life because like everyone else, paparazzi couldn’t get enough of her. Like Mrs. Trump, Jackie was never uncomfortable posing for cameras and confronting controlled media intrusions.
The new First Lady is indeed beautiful though in a more voluptuous and sexy way. There’s a little porn star style in her choice of dresses and make up, which is perversely perfect for our cyber sexualized culture as well as the Donald’s crass, sexist character. The First Lady must dress well, look lovely as well as become a paragon of virtues in the face of horrible events, something very few of them have had to do and those who faced such events rarely did so in public. How a First Lady behaves in the public eye is crucial to her success, which will stain or celebrate her in history. Hillary was butting in on Bill before he was elected.
While suggesting the voters would get two for the price of one bothered the people, who balked: We voted for him, not her, Bill’s unofficial running mate never seemed to grasp how poorly she was perceived by the public.
It’s likely her Lucy Ricardo of politics antics have made her a meddling pest in the national eye, which probably prefers Mrs. Trump to First Man Bill anyway. Notably First Lady Obama, who began thumping for the next election hours before Hillary lost, may be more comely than Bill or Hillary but she has had a troubled two terms as second banana to her much more charming husband. Her dismal failure as school lunch lady reformer exposed her as surly and stubborn. With her comments about hating the White House and her role in it President Obama became the buffer when he pointed out that First Lady is a demanding and unpaid position.
Trump has already met with grace and aplomb despite the potential the Donald’s sexist bent had to humiliate her. She did not bat an eyelash. It’s speculation, but Mrs. Obama reportedly had an extreme loathing for Oprah who propelled her husband into the Oval Office. It’s hard deny the talk show queen was infatuated by the handsome senator from her hometown , Chicago but even Hillary never responded like this to Bill’s much more lascivious and far less important dalliances with celebrities.
Rumors about Michele Obama becoming outraged at Obama’s praise for DOJ head Kamala Harris were insidiously asserting an allusion to the appointee’s good looks sparked his wife’s fury, which makes one wonder just how confident and self reliant this beautiful black woman and high profile attorney can possibly be.
Apparently, Hillary was never too concerned about Slick Willie.’s flagrant affairs until his unseemly trysts with an intern made a mockery out of her victory with sexual harassment laws, which she herself diminished when she attacked her rival, who was her husband’s victim. Trump’s wife was not blindsided by a glut of humiliating accusations and some undeniable footage of his bad behavior. She seemed much more centered, self confident and aware of her mate’s nature. She is certainly more adept with sound bytes and the press than he is.
2Protecting President, Presidency , Privacy and Her Psyche
Trumps crass sexist character caught a lot of criticism from the media, provoked an amusing barrage of suddenly sexually harassed women out if the woodwork to claim Trump was a pig . A 13 year old girl’s claims he’d raped her were especially appalling but had little substance unless you were hell bent on having Hillary in office. While some of his remarks were inappropriate and crude, I never believed Trump raped or molested anyone and neither did his wife, who chalked up the sexist remarks to “boy talk” which was denigrated by the liberal pundits and Hillary, but illustrates just the sort wit, candor and charm a First Lady needs.
The fact that her approach is so completely consistent with any good wife’s insights and loyalty to her man is especially impressive because in a few words she adequately convinces us that her husband is less than perfect, even he knows it, but he’s hardly the sex crazed perv Hillary wanted the voters to see. Being behind your man but refusing to pretend his bad behavior isn’t bad or merely ignoring it, is an error an earnest and open First Lady won’t make.
3Being Above That and Dealing with This for the Press.
First Lady Trump refrained from calling her husband’s accusers nasty names and admitted she chastised her husband for objectifying women, but she did not belabor details or use fancy jargon to impress the reporters. She speaks five languages, had a modeling career and studied design, but the woman’s humble roots and instincts are noteworthy. She’s potentially the presidential buffer that will keep his blustery blurts contained or explained well enough to deflect too many time consuming conflicts from erupting over Trump’s Archie Bunker syndrome.
It’s not something other First Ladies have done yet. They’ve tended to support the president by not inserting comments or by going ballistic as Hillary Clinton did in the wake of Monica Lewinsky.
Long suffering Jackie Kennedy bore the burden of her oversexed husband’s legendary womanizing without comment to her last breath. Hillary gave Bill a black eye and Laura Bush left allegedly because of W.’s rumored affair with Connie Rice, which may be the most confounding scandal that never really happened in the history of this nation. Standing by your man is mandatory, to a point but the point is difficult to recognize with so much at stake. A woman has to know when she’s had enough and do what she just do for her sake. Staying married to a man you hate forever to save his reputation is simply not kosher. It’s not patriotic either.,
44. Crusades, Causes, Caring, Knowing Her Place and His
Certainly, First Ladies have heroically risen from the most stressful circumstances and proven their grit as well as their love for their husband and thus country. Abigail Adam set the bar high before there was an actual presidency or a First Lady by being an advisor to Jefferson and Adams as the revolution broke out literally in her back yard. Her diary and letters are probably the most comprehensive documentation of the battles which she witnessed.
She aided casualties in her kitchen , fed hungry militia kept up a. beautiful literary narrative of these events. This all gives her a unique role in history. On the other hand, Edith Wilson was an “assistant president” and in charge of the country after her husband’s stroke, which she called exhaustion as she kept everyone out of his room. Her involvement in what she referred to as a Petticoat Government, however, was limited. She never cared much about the political problems of the world while !Mrs .
Adams was a well informed adviser who influenced the course if history. A number of First Ladies, beginning with Abigail Adams a tremendous impact on their husbands’ presidency. Elenor Roosevelt was respected for her leadership and recognized for her considerable contributions in her own right, but any First Lady who embraced a public life was bound by the time she lived in and expected to know her place. Expressing opinions, especially those that contradicted her mate’s, was treacherous terrain to wander off in.
Perhaps it’s not widely known that many First Ladies’ tenure in the White House was essentially miserable, an intrusion into their personal lives and the reason some retreated, refusing to take part in the social or political aspects of their husband’s presidency. Staying hidden in their room was not an uncommon choice for some First Ladies.
5First Ladies Live on in Their Own Light
Some First Ladies were downright stubborn about remaining out of the public eye, others died soon after their husband took office or took sick making them unable to support their husband’s. Mary Todd Lincoln is the most famous First Lady to be unfit for her role. She was probably bipolar and had violent fits, periods of deep depression and clear,y added to Abe’s considerable troubles by going mad as she did. A few early First Ladies, on the other hand, were socially adept, most notably Dolly Madison.
She was a popular First Lady because she could throw great parties and serve the best vittles, which helped her husband a great deal and endeared her to the public which dreamed of attending her shin digs.Dolly Madison and other enthusiastic First Ladies eventually defined their role in a way that helped them establish their own identity by choosing a cause to champion and effectively removing themselves as policy pundits when the press interviewed them. Some of these causes were unwisely determined, Lemonade Lucy who was a teetotaling crusader during president Hayes’ sober term, tirelessly campaigned for prohibition which was as counterintuitive and unsuccessful as Nancy Regan’s Just Say No slogan for a program that introduced kids to the allure of drugs and dared them not try them. This was more than merely misguided as the First Lady had a long standing dependency on amphetamines to keep her figure scary skinny.
Likely inspired by earthy Betty Ford’s personal and passionate work to treat addiction, Regan was less inspired to prevent drug abuse than she was by spending an obscene fortune on furniture, fashion and fixtures in the White House which was not appreciated by overtaxed blue collar Americans. Recent articles about Obama’s fashionable yet fierce First Lady suggest America was unimpressed by her unfortunate attempts to provide healthy food in public schools, which students claimed tasted “like vomit” and recent government studies say make students fat. These contrary criticisms are not why the program failed so miserably.
Mrs. Obama’s lack of research and failure to understand school operations, overbearing entitled attitude and tasteless cuisine for kids coupled with a lack of real passion about her school lunch reform were the reason a viable, relevant cause when badly. As several events implied, Mrs. Obama suffers from a let-them-eat- cake mentality that may make her an especially unpopular First Lady despite glowing, over the top articles that feature her in glamorous photographs accompanied by over the top PR spin.
Obama will be honored in the foreseeable future for his charm and tempered spin; this will eventually give way to the terrible truth about his presidency, but Michele Obama will wear her Rep with or without her husband’s positive public image. Like Hillary, she will be seen as abrasive, ambitious and difficult. This will undermine her bid for the presidency. It’s sad that theDemocrats and the people see First Ladies as the most qualified women to run, especially the First Ladies who had questionable approaches to being First Ladies. It’s not very likely Mrs Trump will be motivated to follow her husband’s lead in a run for public office. She can’t run as president because she was born in another country and will in fact be the first First Lady who wasn’t born here. Moreover, she just seems too sharp for such nonsense. She has no need to prove herself or for power.
This in itself could be an incredible asset to the new president. She seems to be a surprising asset to him already, which is how presidents have learned to look at their wives when they shop for one as part as their political strategy. Trump began dating his wife when he was running for president the first time. Jackie was selected for JFK because of her breeding and beauty. Barbara Bush was a well groomed partner, deceptively matronly and sexless enough to make her husband seem traditional and wholesome. Despite the white hair and sweet smile, she reportedly is mean, demanding and bossy whiles he’s just freaking scary.
Perfectly picked Laura Bush has managed to be a class act who is respected among many who deplore her husband and in-laws. Lady Bird Johnson’s legacy is yet unstained by terrible suspicions about President Johnson whose papers and paraphernalia are sealed until essentially hell freezes over. Hillary has tarnished Bills teflon public image in the last few months while he’s proven to be a better potential First Lady than she was. In DC strange people and stranger events are a way of life.
Future First Lady Trump has her work cut out for her, but her beauty, acumen with the press and ability to keep the Donald and his toupee in check if not in line suggest she’s safe bet and could be one of the best things President Trump brings to the table.