Andrew Cotto watches while our collective conversations around hot-button topics become ugly, hyperbolic and rarely productive. Andrew suggests we’re not so divided after all. Can’t we all agree the First Lady is awesome?
(In a very serious voice)…The powers that be in the National Football League (NFL) have spoken. With full consideration to the league’s policy on player conduct, a fine shall be levied against Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks for his unsportsmanlike behavior in the final minutes of the NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers on January 19, 2014. The fine shall be in the amount of $7,875.
(Back to my voice now)…That’s it? A little less than 8 grand for all that? Well, I guess it makes sense considering, you know, Sherman didn’t intentionally hurt anyone or use profanity or anything. It was unsportsmanlike, in a big way, so some slack in the press from the self-appointed sportsmanship police and a slap-on-the-wrist fine from the league should suffice. But the slap-on-the-wrist seems pithy due to the chaos Sherman’s behavior conjured. The unsportsmanlike script got all flipped once the hot button topic of race took over the narrative. What followed is the familiar pattern of American discourse on hot button issues, such as as race, gender and sexuality.
Both sides of the argument set up shop and go through familiar patterns of attack/defend/evade/invoke/bob/weave/name/call. Both sides express outrage (weren’t the Duck Dynasty defenders outraged about Phil Roberston’s suspension while others were outraged by his comments?). It’s often ugly, hyperbolic and maybe not-so-productive, often falling into the old “more heat than light” category.
Anyway, its enough to make you believe that America is a disjointed and dysfunctional country that can’t agree on anything (kind of like our current government). But I believe most citizens of this great nation do not ascribe to the battles of American discourse. We are fortunate people who hold similar standards and viewpoints. We want accountability and equality (and a government that functions). We almost universally agree on a lot of topics, and I can prove it: The vast majority of us love the First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama.
I conducted an official poll within my household, and here are the results.
Dad: Love her.
Mom: (sort-of-singing) Luuuuvvvvv herrrr.
12-year-old Daughter: Michelle Obama is, like…the coolest woman in the world.
Seven-year-old Son: Yeah, she’s pretty cool.
Doggie: I’d like to sniff Bo’s butt.
There you have it. Just as I suspected. When projected out across America, these numbers verify that (+/- poll disclaimer here) 80% of us approve of the First Lady (and when I say “approve” here, I really mean “love” or “greatly admire”).
You may not like her politics, or her husband (kids and dog, though, are mandatory loves), but admiration of Mama Obama can not be denied. The reasons are obvious: The First Lady rocks. She’s the bomb-diggity. The FLOTUS with the MOTUS (OK, that didn’t work). Simply said, Michelle Obama has got it going on in so many ways, beyond looks and status, that we all recognize and approve. Our collective “approval” of her proves that we share a viewpoint that can be reconciled around positive models. And the model of Ms. Obama was in full effect recently.
With the media so focused last week on the Sherman affair, it might have been easy to miss one of the most inspiring and candid moments in recent times. The Miami Heat were visiting the White House to recognize their NBA Championship from last season. During the taping of a spot for the First Lady’s “Let’s Move” campaign with Heat coach Eric Spoelstra and star players Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen, Ms. Obama and LeBron James began video bombing, appearing in the background eating apples and drinking water. Kind of funny. I guess. But then LeBron produced a miniature backboard and hoop which the First Lady of the Untied States, who recently hit the big “Five-O”, came flying in from off-screen to emphatically dunk on, which she followed with some mock-woofing directed at Wade and Allen.
Take a look: FLOTUS DUNKS.
Come on. How cool was that? Crazy, irreverent, hip, athletic – just the right mix of characteristics that people of all stripes can appreciate, delivered in full effect by the First Lady of the United States. Boo. Yeah.
So, since we can agree on the general awesomeness of Michelle Obama, I herby declare that we can agree on a whole lot of other things, too, even the hot button issues and the fact that our current government stinks and the Duck Dynasty guy should never mention vaginas again.