May 14, 2011

"Warrior moms??"

Came across a rather ridiculous -- meaning biased -- article at Live Science where they list the supposed "Top 12 Warrior Moms in History." Yep, history. And whose photo is the very first one we see? Michelle Obama. I kid you not. Let's take a gander at what makes her a "warrior":

12. Michelle Obama, leader of the fight against fat

One of the famous stories from President Barack Obama's 2008 campaign is that his wife would only let him run for president if he quit smoking. That demand would foreshadow Michelle Obama's interest in health and her first lady focus on ending childhood obesity.

The Obamas are the first family since the Clintons to have children in the White House, and Michelle Obama is known for protecting her daughters from publicity. Meanwhile, she's focused on her "Let's Move!" campaign, planting the first vegetable garden at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt's era and bringing Beyoncé on board with a music video encouraging kids to get their hearts pumping.

Are. You. Kidding. Me? I like that -- "The Obamas are the first family since the Clintons to have children in the White House" ... is writer Stephanie Pappas also a master of hyperbole as well as biased? Gee, a whole one president sits between the Clintons and Obamas (George W. Bush, in case, as Pappas obviously assumes, you're an idiot), so gosh! It sure is refreshing to see children in the WH again! Yeesh. But now the more serious matter: Mrs. Obama is a "warrior mom" because she travels around in luxury lecturing on the dastardly ills of ... fat? Pardon me while I guffaw profusely.

And then there's that other big "warrior," Erin Brockovich. The trouble with choosing her is that Pappas' only actual research must be along the same lines as that which made her choose Michelle Obama; in this case her exclusive source must be the film about Brockovich starring Julia Roberts. The problem with this is that Brockovich's tale is largely a yarn about how to extort cash from a big company based on junk science.

And WTF is the deal with including Jiang Qing, aka "Madame Mao??" I mean, look at what Pappas includes in her bio:

She played a small role in politics from the 1940s on, first as her husband's secretary, and then as head of the film section of the Communist Party's propaganda department. A pivotal figure in China's destructive Cultural Revoltion, [sic] Jiang made -- and punished -- many political enemies during the 1960s.

In the power transition after Mao died, Jiang was arrested along with the rest of the Gang of Four. She was sentenced to death but granted life imprisonment instead. As late as 1991, right before Jiang took her own life, Chinese newspapers reported that she was unapologetic in her support of radical revolutionary policies.

While Jiang certainly is a much more authentic "warrior" than either Brockovich or Obama, why include someone like her whose only contributions are decidedly -- even exclusively -- negative? Especially when there's someone who was [preposterously] excluded like Margaret Thatcher? How can you omit someone with the nickname "The Iron Lady?" It's a travesty, so say the least. Hell, even Hillary Clinton would have been a much better (logical) choice for the list as she is our current Secretary of State.

And how 'bout Ayaan Hirsi Ali? (My error: Ali does not have children, so she couldn't be a warrior mom. -- Hube) Golda Meir? Corazon Aquino? Benazir Bhutto? Does Pappas even know who these women are?

I highly doubt it.

Posted by Hube at May 14, 2011 12:50 PM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

I had to laugh at Catherine de Medici, mother of three kings as number four, while Eleanor of Aquitaine, mother of two kings, and Queen to two more, as well as Duchess of Aquitaine in her own right, was omitted.

Posted by: Dana at May 14, 2011 06:06 PM


Posted by: Darren at May 15, 2011 01:38 AM

I'm with Darren. How does Michelle Obama make the list when Boudica does not?

Posted by: Jeff the Baptist at May 16, 2011 06:20 AM

The closest Michelle Obama comes to being a warrior woman is she looks like a Klingon.

Posted by: ThePaganTemple at May 16, 2011 03:38 PM