Monday, September 21, 2009

Kudos to President Obama

When he took office, President Obama faced the unenviable task of being the Commander in Chief of a military that he never served in.  Last Thursday he faced up to one of the hardest things a president can do-giving a posthumous Medal of Honor to the family of a fallen hero, SFC Jared Monti.  By all accounts, President Obama handled the ceremony in the White House with dignity and empathy.

Unfortunately the same can't be said of the First Lady.

For the occasion, Mrs. O debuted a new floral frock in a bold, red rose print, accessorized with green kitten heels and chandelier earrings.

First Lady Michelle Obama wore a cocktail party dress to an event intended to convey the highest honor the entire US military has.

I am certainly no fashion critic.  I rely heavily on my wife to know what color shirt goes well with what color pants.  But even a fashion-deficient guy like me can easily understand that colorful and bold are not appropriate for a posthumous military award of any kind, let alone Congressional Medal of Honor.  Here is the dress she wore specifically for this event (H/T to Michelle Obama's Mirror's Blog, kind of an offshoot of the Obama's Teleprompter blog)-

There is no argument that Michelle Obama has broken some new ground in terms of fashion for a First Lady.  Her usual choice of sleeveless dresses drives my wife to distraction, but I don't think it is big deal in the big picture.  Change in the fashion world only comes by someone being bold and wearing something new, so maybe the Michelle Obama is just catching the office of the First Lady up with the fashion times.

But this was not a fashion event.  The First Lady's function at the award ceremony was to console the parents and the soldiers who were present that had served with SFC Monti.  Instead, she choose to make a statement.  She choose a dress that called attention to herself, rather than something that would show a little humility.

The great irony here is that during the campaign, Michelle Obama publicly courted military families, particularly wives, to vote for her husband.  Yet the dress she wore was disrespectful, if not downright insulting, to SFC Monti's family and the soldiers at the ceremony.  Hopefully some of those military wives she campaigned with are right now telling the First Lady that while bold may be an admirable quality in a military member, it is not always appreciated in a military wife.


maxx said...

It's about respect, plain and simple.
Her lack of it is glaring but not surprising. A lack of respect for our military and military ways seems to be a recurring theme with these two.
It started on inauguration day with the ball.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, she should have appeared as dignified and respectful as this politician at an equally reverential moment: