I have said many times that when it comes to politics and election campaigns, spouses and children are strictly off-limits in my book. I stand by that, however … when a spouse or adult child knowingly and willingly puts himself/herself in the line of fire, then I make an exception.
I speak, of course, of Melania Trump’s speech at the RNC convention on Monday evening. They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If that is true, then apparently Ms. Melania Trump holds First Lady Michelle Obama in very high regard, as one portion of her speech is taken directly from Ms. Obama’s speech in 2008, with just a few words changed. In all fairness, it was only 131 words out of 1,366, or slightly less than 10% of the speech, not “most of the speech” as some social media sites claim. Still, it is shameful. Why?
First, 1,300 words should not be difficult to write without having to steal them from another, especially if you believe in your subject. My average blog post averages between 800 – 1,200 words and I write two of them almost every day, in addition to writing for an online publication. Even at that, I am constantly having to trim my words in order to stay under my self-imposed limit. Second, she has speech-writers who, I suspect wrote the speech, despite Melania’s claim “… I wrote it with as little help as possible. I’m excited.” Personally, I don’t think her vocabulary is that large. Third, Donald Trump has done nothing but criticize the Obamas and now his wife uses Michelle’s speech and presents it as her own? Filosofa is confused!
“Their [her parents] integrity, compassion and intelligence reflect to this day on me and for my love of family and America. From a young age, my parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life: that your word is your bond and you do what you say and keep your promise; that you treat people with respect. They taught and showed me values and morals in their daily life. That is a lesson that I continue to pass along to our son, and we need to pass those lessons on to the many generations to follow. Because we want our children in this nation to know that the only limit to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”
That is the potion of the speech that eerily resembles Ms. Obama’s 2008 speech. One argument I have heard is that “These are common knowledge principles (which means no one ripped them off from anyone). They are Biblical principles. They are not unique to Michele Obama or Melania Trump. Instead of getting worked into a feeding frenzy over who said them first, everyone should know these things and everyone should practice them.” Perhaps so, however it would have been prudent for her to state those principles in her own words, rather than in the words of another. So, was it plagiarism? Of course it was. Does it deserve more than a passing mention? Not really, it merely highlights what most of us already knew, that Melania Trump is no great intellectual. So, enough said about that topic.
The speech itself was tedious, repetitive and boring. There was only one part that caused my mouth to drop open and my eyes to roll toward the back of my head: “Donald intends to represent all the people, not just some of the people. That includes Christians and Jews and Muslims, it includes Hispanics and African-Americans and Asians, and the poor and the middle class. Throughout his career, Donald has successfully worked with people of many faiths and with many nations.” To this, I cry BULLSHIT! Call a spade a spade … Donald intends to represent first, Donald, and second, white, under-educated males. Nobody else holds sway. Not women, African-Americans, Muslims, Jews … none of us.
Donald Trump has said in no uncertain terms that he will ban Muslims, that he will declare war on them, that he will seek to deport all Muslims from the U.S. Is that what she means when she says he will “represent” them? And he is going to build a huge wall to keep Hispanics out of the country. Is that the form of representation to which she refers? In the words of Republican author, Ben Shapiro, “Donald Trump’s nomination has drawn anti-Semites from the woodwork. I’ve experienced more pure, unadulterated anti-Semitism since coming out against Trump’s candidacy than at any other time in my political career. Trump supporters have threatened me and other Jews who hold my viewpoint. They’ve blown up my e-mail inbox with anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. They greeted the birth of my second child by calling for me, my wife, and two children to be thrown into a gas chamber.” Oh yes, we are fast becoming a more peaceful society under the influence of Trump-mania. Last December, Trump gave a speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition … a speech filled with anti-Semitic remarks. He has put down African-Americans and Asians as well, on far too many occasions to list here. And he will represent us all? Be afraid. Be VERY afraid.
Melania Trump did what she was expected to do, she supported her husband and attempted to paint him as a wonderful family man who would work hard to “Make America Great Again”, whatever the sam heck that means. She was not particularly inspirational, not particularly well-spoken, but when it comes to Melania, nobody notices because they only notice her physical ‘beauty’. Many commented on how great she looked, how beautiful she is. She is a former nude model. She was never expected to have brains. In the end, she may well qualify as America’s #3 Bimbo. We are not, however, voting for or against her, but rather for or (hopefully) against her husband. But I leave you with one final thought: If Michelle Obama, who was criticized for wearing a sleeveless dress, had been a former nude model, if Michelle Obama had her picture plastered all over social media wearing nothing more than a gun, a g-string and a pair of boots, would Barack Obama be President of the United States today? Think about it.