April 11, 2013 Leave a comment
By NICK CHILES
Sometimes it feels like the rest of us operate in a separate world than our lawmakers in Washington. I’ve been getting that feeling a lot lately watching the contortions they have been going through to prevent gun control legislation from even making it onto the floor of the Senate for a vote—never mind actually passing legislation expanding background checks, which is a measure supported by 90 percent of the country.
I also got that feeling listening to the incredibly moving and personal speech First Lady Michelle Obama gave in Chicago on Tuesday about Hadiya Pendleton and the challenges being faced by young people in her city. While the First Lady supposedly breathes the same suffocating air as the Washington lawmakers, she clearly is not from the same world. While they worry about how taking a stand against gun violence might upset the NRA and endanger their reelection, Michelle understands deep down in her gut the world that young people in our country like Hadiya Pendleton inhabit. Because it used to be her world. And when she spoke at a luncheon in Chicago, the first lady brought all the power and emotion of her life experiences to bear.
In the midst of her speech, the first lady delivered one of those shocking lines that remind us how different it feels to African Americans when the occupants of the White House look like us. It was the same shock we got when the president said that Trayvon Martin could have been his son. Read more of this post