We slur, you decide

Everyone on the internet has covered the unapologetic racism of this Fox News chyron, so I’m going to point out that this is also a really sexist slam against Michelle Obama.

Baby mamas, as even my grandparents know at this point, aren’t just single mothers who don’t have a close relationship with the fathers of their children, they’re also usually portrayed as golddiggers who are using child support to fund their own expensive habits. Although both parts are exactly the opposite of true in the case of the Obamas, it’s the second part that really bothers me. Michelle Obama is an intelligent, well-educated, independently successful woman who has a strong, equal partnership with her husband. She is, in short everything a black woman is not supposed to be. Calling her a “baby mama” is a lot like telling Senator Clinton to “iron my shirt”—it’s a silencing tactic, meant to put her in her place, because everything about her is threatening to our racist, sexist status quo.

Maybe the sexist aspect of the slur seems minor in comparison to the evident racism, but I expect this is just the beginning of the unbelievable pile of shit Michelle Obama will be subjected to during this campaign now that it’s down to just her husband and Saint Barbecue. She’s just as outspoken and opinionated as Elizabeth Edwards, but more obviously fails to conform to the politician’s wife mold by A) having her own career and B) being black. And if Hillary Clinton’s campaign taught us only one thing, it’s that the media still hates a woman who breaks the mold.

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2 Responses

  1. “She is, in short everything a black woman is not supposed to be.”

    How is that sentence any less racist?

  2. I can’t believe I’m even bothering to reply to this, but it’s not racist because I’m calling out racist stereotypes in order to debunk and undermine them, not naming them because I ascribe to them and wish Michelle Obama adhered to them more closely.

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