Enough with the outrage. This is not a scandal. In the big picture, it’s a minor error.
Let me start by saying that while I’m not indifferent to the pickle that Ms. Trump has gotten herself into, I don’t actually feel sorry for her. She’s doing okay for herself.
I mean, first, she can walk in those shoes. I would totally misstep and feel the heel slip out from underneath me to find my ankle bent at the wrong spot, immediately followed by bouncing my own not-so-tight buttocks to the ground.
Second, her dress was quite nice, with those frilly poofs at the end of her 3/4 length sleeves. It was an angelic white. I could imagine myself in the green room and either spilling a coffee, or, very likely, depositing a ring of makeup around the neckline. She looked pretty flawless.
She’s along for a crazy ride as a politician’s wife. Not just any politician, but a major-party presidential candidate. There’s a ton of spotlight trained on her, but she spent the early part of her career under lights, strutting along the catwalk. I think she’s got this. She might not like it, but she’s got it.
Okay, back to the outrage. The outrage about Melania Trump’s speech at the Republican National Convention. The outrage over the speech she delivered to “humanize” her brash spouse. The speech that was cribbed liberally from the speech Michelle Obama gave eight years ago to humanize her own presidential candidate husband.
Michelle Obama’s was a good speech to copy. It probably marked the beginning of America’s love affair with the future first lady. It made people see the Obamas as another couple with struggles “just like us.” It was designed, in part, to de-other them.
Ms. Trump delivered her version professionally, if a bit stiffly. I mean it was originally written to introduce a “South Side [of Chicago] Girl.” That doesn’t fit Trump so much.
But this is not a scandal. It is a staffer using cut and paste and then attempting to make the words Melania’s own by whitewashing the personal out. Yes, the two speeches eight years apart had almost 50% in common. But the concepts of hard work and loyalty and hope for children is pretty universal–whether you grew up in eastern Europe or south Chicago.
More importantly, this is the candidate’s wife we are talking about, not a future Attorney General (although it would be a little funny if Gov. Christie got passed over, again. But I’m not laughing since schadenfreude may be bad karma).
From an artistic point of view, it could be that Melania Trump is just digging deep into her OG self. Like Weezy says after incorporating Kanye’s lyrics in his song:
And that was called recycling
Something ’cause you just like it
So you say it just like it.
Some say its biting
But I say its enlightening
Besides Dr. Kanye West is one of the brightest.
So maybe she was paying homage to a great first lady. Maybe she was modeling herself after another supportive wife. Maybe she was feeling the same feels and didn’t have a more clever way to express them.
Maybe she was just sampling a familiar hit. So sue her.
Anyway, her nonpartisan words about what it’s like to be an American were not the scandalous words that I heard last night. No, they were not. Let’s not waste any more time on the frivolous speech of the wife. There’s bigger fish to fry.