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September 5th, 2012
10:48 AM ET

Opinion: Michelle Obama has redefined black women

Editor's note: Sophia A. Nelson is a columnist and political analyst. She is the author of "Black Woman Redefined: Dispelling Myths and Discovering Fulfillment in the Age of Michelle Obama."

By Sophia A. Nelson, Special to CNN

I still pinch myself every time I see her.

I still well up with tears every time she walks into a room. I stand taller, with a smile, every time she delivers a passionate speech about her deep love for her country or her commitment to the families of our military. I have had the privilege of sitting with her in the White House kitchen garden tasting honey and apples, interviewing her about her new book, and I have been blessed to laugh with her during the Christmas holidays as the White House photographer snapped our picture with the president.

But I still find it hard to believe that my first lady is a woman of color: a strong, beautiful, accomplished black woman. Michelle Obama is elegant, educated, and full of grace. But what makes her so special is that she is still a down-to-earth "sister girl" raised in Chicago’s Southside.

Opinion: Michelle's personal story a political triumph

On Tuesday night she told America, and the world, her story. But what she did for millions of black women and girls here, and around the globe, was humanize us. She softened us. She made us part of the American fabric in a way no one else ever could. Without ever uttering a word about race in her speech,  Obama’s very presence on the world stage her arms well-defined, her dress fierce, her hair shiny-silky with a flip curl to boot made us no longer invisible.

Michelle Obama convention speech dress dazzles, scores

The first lady’s presence and poise were captivating in a way that brought forth our pained history and our powerful triumph as black women: Just by being Michelle, she most emphatically answers Sojourner Truth’s 160-year-old question, “Ain’t I a woman?"

Yes, we are women too!

She effortlessly destroyed harsh stereotypes about who black women are, and made us something we rarely ever get to be in public: feminine, soft, vulnerable, loving, warm, proud, compassionate, smart, affirmed, dynamic, bold, reflective, humble, and fun all at once.

And she touched us with stories about growing up with a dad who had multiple sclerosis and struggled to walk up the stairs to hug his children, and what she has learned living with the president of the United States.

She connected with men, women, black, white, yellow and red.

If you are looking for a political analysis, here is one: Michelle Obama hit a home run last night for the Democratic Party. But she also hit a home run for America.

Opinion: Will Michelle Obama's speech change history?

As first lady of the United States, she represents everyone. She did not have to mention race, nor need to: Her very essence reminds us that she is a powerful, brilliant black woman. What is a game changer for America is that this country, with all of its challenges and “isms,” embraces her as its first lady. Television pundits have called her the most popular woman in America. Americans do not define her as the fist-bumping, machine gun-toting, Afro-wearing angry black woman she was once portrayed as in 2008.

Michelle Obama has changed the game for women of color, and redefined what is possible for black women.

She has it all. She has a good man. She has a family. She is healthy, fit, and well-balanced. She loves the Lord. She takes care of her mom like any good daughter would. She embraces fidelity and loyalty and has a deep and abiding love for her man. She models for us what it means to be a truly successful woman.

A sister.

A friend.

A good neighbor.

And most importantly, she models what it means to be a great American.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Sophia A. Nelson.

soundoff (208 Responses)
  1. Heather Taylor

    I am proud of our First Lady!! She appears to be intelligent and a nice person. There are too many people in this world who are racist against black women and who are quick to stereotype us all as being "angry black women." Oftentimes, even before getting to know you we are. Unfortunately, as black women, we do not have much of a "back bone" from the men in our race who have basically abandoned us for women outside of our race. It is an everyday struggle for black women with the obstacles we face, We have to very extremely strong since there is so much racism around the would and being able to live in a color conscious society. The media is continously portraying us in such a negative manner. The media never hires attractive, intelligent, slim, non-dredlock wearing women because they want to keep us down and portray us as being ignorant, obese, loud, uneducated, or unattractive. I am an educated, intelligent, humble, respectful, attractive black woman who is never exemplfies loud or over bearing behavior. However, I have been judged on many occassions as being something I am not without even uttering a single word. Judging a book by its cover is nothing but clear-cut racism.

    January 2, 2013 at 1:20 am | Report abuse |
  2. Name*felicia

    Michelle is stopping stereotypes as we speak, and she will be back in the office for another four more years!!

    December 17, 2012 at 2:31 am | Report abuse |
  3. Lori

    Geez ... what a hoot this piece was. Michelle Obama loves her country?! She might love the country that she and her husband want to transform it to, but she doesn't love THIS country. Damn, that made me laugh out loud.

    December 4, 2012 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  4. Anthony

    It takes only a dumbest fool to say this...

    November 2, 2012 at 12:41 am | Report abuse |
  5. samuel

    answer this for me please, which Lord does she love??? that will explain alot of her husband's policies!

    November 2, 2012 at 12:40 am | Report abuse |
  6. hello

    What a vile article, firstly Black? in skin colour or race? Aboriginals are Black but NOT Africans, there are some Black skin Indians in India but there have nothing to do with African. There are some black people in South East Asia Thailand etc or the Pacific Islands, what or which Black woman is this ignorant woman referencing to? Not me I am a individual, I NOT defined by a famous black woman. I like Michelle, but Michelle is a totally different person from me.

    September 27, 2012 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • DB

      My friend, they originated from Africa – you are operating on old data. There has been DNA testing of Aboriginals, blacks in Asia, and it matches Africans to a T.

      Yes, everyone is an individual but let's also keep to the facts. Everyone runs away from Africa, especially blacks from other parts of the world who are not educated of their past.

      September 28, 2012 at 7:01 am | Report abuse |
      • Anthony Nathan

        DB, what about us the so called whites? Did we not come to this country seeking assuylum driving away the indigeinous people to their "Reservations". Shame on us talking about the other people lowly.

        September 28, 2012 at 11:45 pm | Report abuse |
      • Anthony Nathan

        DB, what about us the so called whites? Did we not come to this country seeking asylum driving away the indigeinous people to their "Reservations". Shame on us talking about the other people lowly.

        September 28, 2012 at 11:48 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jack Torrence

        I for one am happy that she cut back on all the head bobbing,finger pointing and blond weaves. These cut backs and reductions in eating popeyes on national television have helped our people out greatly! One luv sista gurls n im out!

        October 2, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  7. guest43

    A question for the obviously infatuated author...do you feel the same about being in the same air as Condi Rice? Who is also a brilliant, strong, beautiful, graceful, accomplished black woman....do Condi's triceps not pass muster?

    September 27, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Rob

    It really opens one up to criticism of superficiality when one of your major reasons for admiring the first lady is that her hair is "silky-shiny."

    September 27, 2012 at 7:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Bigdeal

      Its called perm, just like you know some white people color the hair blond, that dose not change who they are.

      September 27, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jina

      I agree with you on that one, sir. Instead of "silky-shiny" (which can even make black women who wear naturals upset), she should have just stated that our FLOTUS was looking fierce!

      September 29, 2012 at 6:31 am | Report abuse |
    • ALN

      Her major reason for admiring the first lady is because she she "humanized" African American women, admiring her hair is a minor reason. Maybe you should look for better reasons to criticize the author.

      September 30, 2012 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Chinonye

    She is a nice woman, but to call her a woman of color is nonsense. Have you seen a woman with no color?White is color, black, yellow, red, brown etc are colors. Cease using color which I call racial cancer of American society to define people. Let s/he with no color raise his or her hand up.

    September 26, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jina

      I understand what you mean, but to discount something that has affected people in THIS country is plain crazy. Don't ignore my beautiful brown skin...see it, recognize it and keep going about your business. I don't judge people by their skin color, but I can see quite well...no color-blindness here. I am a woman of color (no person is truly "white" or "black", since all people, including albinos, have some level of pigmentation...the absence of pigmentation is shading and there are no people with shades). I am a "Black American" woman in this country and, unfortunately, society has lumped me in a certain box. Do I stay in it...of course not. Neither do a lot of people, but recognize that the box is there. While we are all grouped in a "box", it is ultimately up to the individual to either step up or step back...and First Lady Michelle Obama stepped up. Give credit where it is due!

      September 26, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anthony Nathan

      Certainly white is a color and we white people should be careful of what we say to others about their colours. God intend to create colourful people like the flowers, fishes etc. So, what's wrong with the colours? Stupidity and ignorance still persist in many of us. Beneath your skin the colour of blood is red. If God intended to create different colours to different skin people, our blood would have been in many different colors. Understand this simple and basic reason of God's creation. If you don't then you don't deserve to be in this world.I'm sick and tired of white people thinking that we are the supreme beings created by God to rule over all others. Come to your senses now and stop this bickering.

      September 27, 2012 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
      • Bigdeal

        God bless you my white sister for your wise all this foolishness makes me upset, lets love each other and live together as one.

        September 27, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
      • Paul Pierre

        I admire Michelle, but not just for the way she looks. She did not do much to be black. She just is and therefore that is not an accomplishment. Being a Harvard grad, a good mother, and the work she has done with the military families are accomplishments. Being married to Barrack is also NOT an accomplisment any more than Laura and Barbara are accomplished for marrying into the Bush family. As far, as pushing for racial equality, etc...I would put Eleanor Roosevelt ahead of Michelle.

        October 2, 2012 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  10. sam 246

    Michelle is one of the most racist black women today.
    During her college year's the hatred of whites really came out. Didn't you hear what she said after her husband was voted in as President? "for the first time . . . . . ."

    Not someone who should be considered a role model

    September 26, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      Keep hating Sam, it will not do you or your Bigot counterparts any good; including Willard Mitt Romney. He will lose Big Time, and it will not be close by the way. He will lose by a landslide, its only going to get worse for him.

      September 26, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  11. obudidi

    just passing by...how does this change the price of oil?

    September 25, 2012 at 10:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      Whoever you are, buy your oil and shut-up. We are not paying nearly what the rest of the world is paying in gas prices. Neither the President nor Michelle Obama control Oil Prices silly. PLEASE GO BACK TO SCHOOL......Get another degree please.

      September 26, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  12. The H

    I certainly feel differently now about them. I now think of them as glamorous wives of millionaires and politicians. I used to give a lot of money to a charity for Single Black women, but I have stopped doing that. I keep thinking of all that money going to people who look like Michele Obama and just laughing at my paultry contribuion.

    September 23, 2012 at 8:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Anthony Nathan

      I don't believe you for a second...you're one of the disgruntled lot...

      September 24, 2012 at 5:50 am | Report abuse |
    • An

      Wow. Still thinking of black people as one thing or the "other." How sad for you

      September 26, 2012 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Jack Kidd

      Do you realize that your response makes you sound like you were simply patronizing single black women before?

      I assure you there a plenty of single black women who are poor and would welcome any form of assistance. Perhaps instead of contributing money, you could contribute your time? Perhaps you could mentor someone? Perhaps you could help tutor someone? Perhaps you could babysit their children while they work or go to school?

      Don't give with your money, give with your heart.

      September 28, 2012 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jina

    I grew up watching "The Cosby Show" and "A Different World". I watched these shows because it was refreshing to see people who looked like me that were successful, happy and proud of their humble backgrounds. There was no type of buffoonery or nonsense on either show. While there are plenty of families like the Huxtables, Gilberts, Waynes, Reeses and Johnsons, we rarely ever see them in the media. Instead, we see stereotypical images from an ignorant myopic point of view. So, to see real people...real families, especially this family, succeed...it SHOULD make us stand a little taller and feel a bit prouder of who we are and what we have accomplished in this country. I do not believe First Lady Michelle Obama has re-defined us...she has put us in the spotlight. She is who she is and many women admire who for being an inspiration for ALL women.

    September 21, 2012 at 6:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Anthony Nathan

      Kudos to you...I can't agree more.

      September 24, 2012 at 5:54 am | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      Thank you Jina,

      Exactly, she has put beautiful Black, educated, majestic, glamorous Sistahs in the spotlight and her and her husband will when another term. Thank you very much and you should be proud of her and us.....Peace/Blessings

      September 26, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. ImWEBSPY

    I think the GOP is doing a social experiment, Accidently go to war on bad advice and kill and injure100 thousand needlessly. Take our money, jobs, homes, cars, give them to the banks and their friends on the way out of town.

    Then when were really good and poor get us to vote for a millionaire Mormon who calls us all a bunch of losers to win!

    Sounds about right!

    September 20, 2012 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anthony Nathan

      Very sensible way of thinking...your analytical way of seeing what's happening around you is amazing. No wonder president Obama is leading in almost all the polls in the battleground states. It's the resolute of the great American people of keeing the opportunists and war mongers away from winning the presidency is admirable.

      September 24, 2012 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  15. Trish

    Well if you have a problem with the current President, make sure you vote in the next election. If you decide to skip your right to vote and President Obama gets re-elected, you won't have a leg to stand on for your complaining. No one will be able to fix the problems the U.S. has in 4yrs. I will be surprised if they will be fixed in the next four.

    September 17, 2012 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Erica

    WOW...people have nothing better to do but tear others down. No matter what a black woman does from the First lady to a local resident, they will always get torn down by some because they don't have blond hair, blue eyes and wear a sixe 0.

    September 17, 2012 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • What???

      Erica, if you are confident in yourself then what another thinks is just like the rear part of the human anatomy that everybody has. If you need someone to validate you then you may need to seek consoling for your own peace of mind. If you believe in God your faith needs to be rebuilt for you are not your own. Your color doesn't make you! Your color is a superficial expression of melanin and is irrelevant to who you are? Be you!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Trisha

    These comments are the most awkward conversations i have ever read, why are we judging this woman and her thoughts, work on your lives, and your health, and get like the Obamas and stop slandering hate around, but since the word is free keep using it then people.

    September 17, 2012 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
  18. April

    I see Michelle Obamas everyday, when I walk out of my home. So no, Mrs Obama does NOT re-define woman of color. That said, I do agree that for those who are ignorant and have preconceived ideas of what a black woman acts like or looks like may have a eye opening experience with Michelle Obama. Only because those people have no choice but to pay attention to the First Lady. They can choose to ignore the black woman that graduated from law school, their children's teacher, their educated and beautiful co-worker, or any other black woman that is a professional who holds herself in a respectable manner and choose to only pay attention to the ones that are low-class and do not respect themselves. I think that's why the writer is saying that Michelle Obama redefines black women.

    September 14, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andy

      I agree with you. There are millions of black women who are educated, smart, classy and responsible in the USA, Africa , the Caribbean and Latin America. Black women like Michelle Obama are not new, they are just finally getting press .

      September 20, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
      • Anthony Nathan

        Andy, well said...

        September 21, 2012 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      Who asked you? How can you take a beautiful article like this and misconstrue its intentions. People are sick, twisted, racist and jealous haters. This is what you get when some "Americans" do not have their own house in order. Lack of education, still holding on to racism and just plain ignorant. I guess being racist is all some people have to offer.

      September 26, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  19. leezle3

    Why does it take someone else to make you stand taller in a room? Where is you're personal drive and pride? Why can't you stand taller because you are who you are and proud of it? Wake up America

    September 13, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Zareth

      You are 100% right on the mark!

      September 14, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • COCO

      Why must we look at someone to prop you up. We must be proud of ourselves first but now a day we idolize someone for something we are well capable of doing on our own.
      If some who does not know a thing about you see people of your race or stature you acting a fool they are going to think you are fool as well. I do admire Mrs. Obama accomplishments and what she stands for. I don’t agree with the stereotypes that black women het in this country. These stereotype are just a product of the media and how society. They don’t see the hard working woman in this great country of ours. The same can be said about any AMERICAN Hard working woman.

      September 14, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      How can you take a beautiful article like this and misconstrue its intentions. People are sick, twisted, racist and jealous haters. This is what you get when some "Americans" do not have their own house in order. Lack of education, still holding on to racism and just plain ignorant. I guess being racist is all some people have to offer.

      September 26, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  20. leezle3

    Why does it take somebody else to make you feel better about yourself, and to stand taller in a room? Where is your personal drive and pride? What ever happened to standing taller because you are who you are.

    September 13, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  21. joy

    Did Mrs. Obama have cosmetic surgery? she sure looks different, why arent' others talking about this? I think she is so much prettier since she had work done and she is also pictured a lot more.

    September 13, 2012 at 7:20 am | Report abuse |
    • RealityCheck

      Have you seen pictures of Hillary Clinton through the first few years of the Clinton presidency? Trust me, they get makeovers, as do the presidents and to some degree everyone in public office.

      September 20, 2012 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • c

      What a totally irrelevant comment.

      September 21, 2012 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Lost

    Black women: don't allow these hateful voices to bring division between Michelle and Condoleeza. They truly are one united front.

    September 13, 2012 at 3:13 am | Report abuse |
  23. Analystgirl

    She has managed to bring respectibility and honor to the white house by raising two well behaved children under a microscope. Not like the two drunken bush girls who disgraced our country during the last administration. My hat is off to her.

    September 12, 2012 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • JONATHAN

      Mainstream entertainment has distorted black women images. They have traditionally used two models. The mammy (Nell Carter, Hattie McDaniel) or object ( lil Kim, josephine baker). The first lady is real and she is like a lot of African American Women.

      September 20, 2012 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Bob

    Michelle Obama is a racist, just read her college thesis. She is only proud now because her husband is in office and she is reaping the rewards of being the first lady.

    September 11, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      I agree Bob, and in addition to her thesis, I find it very interesting about her "commitment," to military families. Here is a news flash. The president has approved the lowest salary raise the military has seen in very long time. I agree that cuts need to be made, but how can you claim to care about military families, who in most cases live check to check and then not put your husband in line when their annual raise is little to nothing despite what they have been through throughout these wars.

      September 13, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Zareth

      I agree

      September 14, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Wayne

      How can you take a beautiful article like this and misconstrue its intentions. People are sick, twisted, racist and jealous haters. This is what you get when some "Americans" do not have their own house in order. Lack of education, still holding on to racism and just plain ignorant. I guess being racist is all some people have.

      September 26, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  25. 2Bob

    I am not a Yank but from the outside looking in the US appears to be a better place for the fact that a non-white guy has been elected President. The other thing; you guys expect too much from your President. Its only in the movies where he can fly jet fighters and shoot down alien aircraft.

    September 11, 2012 at 3:40 am | Report abuse |
  26. Sdmc

    The First Lady attended Princeton University and Harvard Law School and worked at a law firm. She also worked as part of the staff of Chicago mayor Richard M. Daley, and for the University of Chicago. She is educated and accomplished in her own right. She has stated they had student loans that took them years to payoff. This shows that no matter how intelligent or educated a person is, when others are biased they will say nasty, slanderous things about them behind the curtain of anonymity. You may not like or agree with them, their politics or anything else but the office of President and First Lady have always and will always deserve respect in this country. I did not like or agree with Bush in anyway but I defended him fiercely in France when someone disrespected him in a very nasty fashion. Remember people, you will have your choice in office one day and what goes around comes around let's see how you like it when someone very publicly calls a white First Lady these vile, disrespectful names. There will be a scream to the heavens. Never has so little respect been given to a First Lady. Ms. Obama has done nothing to deserve this treatment even if you disagree with the politics.

    September 11, 2012 at 1:53 am | Report abuse |
  27. Stingerhp

    Respect is earned, not expected......

    September 10, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • louis

      You have to give respect to get respect. So to earn respect you most give it...

      September 10, 2012 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • louis

      Also never seen Oprah although I'm sure it was a good show I don't need a talk show to form my own opinions and thank you for proving my point have a lovely day....

      September 10, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Stingerhp

    For Pete's sake ! thought we got rid of the Oprah show last year..Here it is again...

    September 10, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Andrew

    CNN has soooo many of these silly feel good articles these days.

    September 10, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Tiha

    As a black African educated(phd) woman, I am shocked that a woman can redefine black women because she is married to a successful man!

    September 9, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • TC

      Where did the author say that's all she is?

      September 10, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
      • Tiha

        Article is based on her being the first lady, not her the educated woman that she is!

        September 10, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Leilah

      Wow, amazing what you got from the article. It's kinda embarrassing, especially since you have a phd.

      September 11, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Trisha

      I thought the article was amazing, how can u decipher what she said into it being just about a successful man, Michelle has haha!

      September 17, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • John Wayne

        Trisha, I agree totally, how can you take a beautiful article like this and misconstue its intentions. People are sick, twisted, racist and jealous haters. This is what you get when some "Americans" do not have their own house in order. Lack of education, still holding on to racism and just plain ignorant. I guess being racist is all some people have.

        September 26, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Bronx N.Y.

    Give it a break please!!!!

    September 9, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  32. Melissa

    I think Condolezza Rice is a far better role model and she is not even mentioned here. What a shame, that the author cannot acknowledge the triumphs of Condi. Her article falls flat by being so close minded that she cannot give Condi her credit. Why don't you read Condi's autobiography to learn what obstacles she faced?

    September 9, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
    • TC

      Could it be because this particular article isn't about Condi?

      September 10, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jaye

      Excuse me, but Condeleeza Rice was never a First Lady, never had to stand up and support her HUSBAND and still have the grace and intelligence to work in the non-profit realm. I admire both women, but the article is about the First Lady of the United States...since SHE gave a speech at the DNC!

      December 28, 2012 at 7:50 am | Report abuse |
  33. Dolly

    Obama can give a darn good speech. Other than that he is not much different from the other presidents. They all make big fat promises but deliver little.

    September 8, 2012 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carole

      Yes, he does give a good speech, but if you read it you will see it is only words that appeal to the emotions.
      As to Michelle Obama redefining Black women, I would like to remind you that there lots of
      Black women who are far more accomplished. For example: the late Barbara Jordan, Toni Morrison,
      Condoleeza Rice, Coretta Scott King, Rosa Parks, etc.

      September 8, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Report abuse |
      • V

        Ah, but that depends on how you measure accomplishment? Who says raising two girls successfully while residing in the White House with billions of individuals watching your every move isn't more successful than a woman who holds a position in the government?

        September 12, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • Dan

        Thank you. When Condi become a wife and mother I'll take a fresh look at her. I too see Michelle Obama everyday that I go out. I n fact, I've known her all my life, but she was not visibly represented. Now she is. I think the author is simply saying Michele Obama is redefining the negative definition that existed for Black women.

        September 17, 2012 at 8:23 am | Report abuse |
  34. Patty

    My goodness me, I am from England and the Obama's made the USA respectable again, you have no idea the delight, enchantment and excitement he radiated in Europe when he was visiting. Michelle did good and visited underprivileged schools the children there are still in awe of her and doing so much better since her visit they transcend race and class . They inspired whole nations and CHILDREN outside the States, shouldn't you be proud of that as Americans

    September 8, 2012 at 3:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Lost

      Thank you sooo much for your heart felt sentiments about the First Lady of the US. I agree, the current first family has drawn more positive attention in terms of the world's view of the US. I'm praying that in these critical and divisive times that we face here in the states, and especially during an election year, the majority of votes will allow the current administration to continue forward for the sake of what sanity there is left on this planet. Lady Michelle's grace and sense of dignity is only a tiny speck of the relationship that is her family and astounding husband. More people in the international community need to stand in support of our current president, to show those who are hate-ridden and blinded by skewed politics that love and truth will conquer all.

      September 13, 2012 at 3:01 am | Report abuse |
  35. Jeep Girl

    I have mixed values about this article. Firstly, I would respect it more if it did not rely so much on her having a "man" or her "wifing" abilities. While yes those are pluses, a woman regardless of color is just as valuable with or without a man. I think relying so heavily on that is insinuating that a (black) woman is worth less if she is man-less.

    I understand this is an opinion peice but feel perhaps Michelle's own personal accomplishments should have been highlighted. Many people myself included don't know much about her history, what is her education? what kind of volunteer work has she done? What are personal struggles she endured to get to where she is now? Those are more relevant as other woman can relate and admire those aspects.
    Women should not strive to be the first lady – they should strive to be the president. Not that anything less isnt important – but the point is – it shouldnt be about who she is married to it should be about who she is and what SHE has done.

    That being said – women of color having a positive role model to look up to other than celebrities or models is a good thing no matter what.

    And for the record I am a white republican young woman.

    September 7, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nonnie

      white republican young woman, maybe that explains why you know nothing about the First Lady; stop listening to Fox and Rush Lumbaugh and try MSNBC or CNN, or maybe the abundance of stories and interviews about.

      September 7, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      It is not true that all women can succeed without a man. I give you Hillary Clinton. That hideous woman would be unemployed/retired if she were not Bill's wife. She is a lackey that would never be where she it if she did not suck up to her superiors/betters. She is a horrible speaker, a lousy Sec of State (Bill had to secure the release of the two girls in N. Korea because she couldn't), she has no people skills, she dresses like a frumpy punk metal singer and she is a horrible example of our country.

      September 8, 2012 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  36. Dave Young

    I want to hear how Obama has redefined his white mother and white grandmother who didn`t birth him in Hawaii. Do tell. Thanks.

    September 6, 2012 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mrs. Davis

      Obama doesn't need to redefine his white mother and grandmother. American society has always put white women on a pedestal, and in his spoken opinions and writings Obama has kept his mother and grandmother there. What are you trying to get at? And as far as where Obama was born, he was born in Hawaii. You are among the idiots that keep bringing this nonissue up. Move on to something relevant, if you know anything else to talk about and can.

      September 7, 2012 at 5:59 am | Report abuse |
      • Abu Hassan

        I always thought he was born in Indonesia. I am so disappoined.

        September 8, 2012 at 7:28 am | Report abuse |
    • TC

      While his grandmother didn't "birth him anywhere, his mother did indeed "birth" him in HI.

      Unless you beleve the state issues fake birth cirtificates, and local Hawaiin newspapers were in on on the future conspiracy in 1961.

      September 10, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Margaret Horn

    In a 25 minute speech, much of it praising Black values, not one word about Onkwehonwe – the First People of this country. Oh, but of course, we are not a voting sector of any consequence – although we have claim to Turtle Island – this whole country. Her arms are toned admirably – but she does not represent my nation.

    September 6, 2012 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lynda

      I am curious what speech you were listening to that was championing "black values?" What I heard was a speech championing American values. Perhaps you should try understanding that we are all Americans, not one more than the other.

      September 7, 2012 at 1:59 am | Report abuse |
      • Myke

        You obviously weren't listening.

        September 7, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Wastrel

    A brain without windows to let the light in, he has. Fdisk, format, re-install.

    September 6, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  39. spent

    Redefined: She really needed to redefine her own life...Oh well, and I quote, "All of this for that damn old flag." Now, that is redefining alright. Tax payers pay her husband a lofty salary for a job, not well done, and she gets the benefits of the tax payers money to "redefine." Should have heard a couple of 'black women" in the mall going at it with each other, now that is redefining to the ultimate.

    September 6, 2012 at 8:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Lauren

      For all of President Obama's intellect, his salary is not even in the league. This is an average salary for an above average man. As for Mrs. Obama she does not need to ride the curtails of a position, due to the fact of teamwork and perseverance the they have carved their own path. In the future..... just a few words of advice, when making statements , keep everything based upon facts; therefore you won't come across as petty, insecure and jealous.

      September 6, 2012 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mjkerr03

      Which taxpayers would those be? Mitt Romney et al?

      September 7, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Truth

    Michelle Obama is an amazing women. However, she has no more redefined Black women than Barbara Bush redefined White women. Black women are not defined by one woman no more than White women are defined by one woman. Ms. Obama is a role model for all women. Black women need no one to redefine them as if to infer that something is wrong with them. They are great women and will always be great women. Black women, like no other group of women, has dealt with such odds against them and succeeded. They are examples for all women and need not anyone to redefine them.

    September 5, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Herr

      Obviously a great cultural divide between races. Speech, dress, and behavior still limit blacks appeal to whites and vice versa. The black man. Who will redefine him? Herman Cain and Colin Powell would be two great starts.

      September 6, 2012 at 6:26 am | Report abuse |
      • Weatherthestorm

        I won't be voting for Obama, but he and his wife are better role models than the low-level "heroes" that the entertainment media pushes on blacks and whites alike. There's widespread breakdown in marriage and families that's growing, esp. in poorer black communities, with many fatherless children who start and usually stay way behind. More and more govt spending is not helping, and may even be pushing things in the wrong direction. Where's the leadership on this?

        September 6, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jo Anne Klem

      While Michelle is to be admired for being so strong for women, all women. What I don't see is where she has involved herself in any of the Women's Rights groups> either as a voluntee, keynote speaker (you know she'll bring in the big bucks)////// She doesn't ;plug in to the hundreds of Charities that would love to have her? Heck, at a fundraiser,,she cud be auctioned off as "A Lunch with the First Lady.

      September 7, 2012 at 1:48 am | Report abuse |
  41. Drew

    Blacks are, as a group, a gigantic bio-weapon, bringing crime, decay and chaos wherever they go.

    I see black women as little more than spreaders of a particularly virulent disease.

    September 5, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • AS

      Goodness, you must live a dreadful life to generalize an entire group of people that way. You are a very "brave" person behind a computer. Not like IP addresses can not be traced or anything...

      September 5, 2012 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Truth

      Drew, need we remind you that Whites have their fair share of thieves, criminals, perverts, pedophiles, etc., and that being the case as the privileged majority. What is their excuse for having a good representation of the earth's filth on every contingent wherein they live and that after being so historically instrumental in spreading the evils of racism, colonialism, slavery, economic thievery, etc.?

      September 5, 2012 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Zoundsman

      There it is- Dr.Megele is alive and on the keyboard.

      September 6, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
      • Zoundsman

        Correction" Mengele Mengele Mengele

        September 6, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mona

      Judge? And you will be judged.

      September 6, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • TrueKings

      Spreading, wow and what are you? Black women gave birth two those built the country you live in and it's a shame they had to try to recruit us to do it instead of using your own brains and strength to do so. That is why given any the bad situations that we self create or are born into we still triumph let the roles be reversed and your history and family and language been taken away your people would be extinct by now because as you showed your lack of education with that false statement you said, they also would be lacking in every other area also. So watch yourself one day someone might not greet you with a word of advice.............

      September 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave Young

      Is that why Planned Parenthood`s founder aimed her strategy thus ? Discuss.

      September 6, 2012 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Myke

      Come on now.

      September 7, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Keeker

    Oh please how did she redifine Black Women in what way? If so, what did Donna Summer, Dion Warwick, Oprah Winfrey,Gladys Knight, and so on? What did they do NOTHING? Michelle Obama was never proud of American until her husband ran for President of the United States. Heck she said it herself. So your telling me she redifined Black Women yeah she sure did she sent them back a decade

    September 5, 2012 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kent

      Ok. This is going to be one of those "You don't know because you don't really understand." replies. I remember the comments she made 4 years ago, and to be honest, that criticism might have been accurate. But when you go from 'The Candidate's Wife' to 'FLOTUS', you see things neither of us would never see. You connect with people you never did. We all get tainted by our environments, but when you are put in the lofty office she is in, you are important to everyone. That allows people to be who they've always wanted to be because everyone else aspires to be as well. So you keep your anger The article is dead on, and you can't see that because again, you just don't understand.

      September 5, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
      • bigdumbdinosaur

        I remember the comments she made 4 years ago, and to be honest, that criticism might have been accurate. But when you go from 'The Candidate's Wife' to 'FLOTUS', you see things neither of us would never see.

        Talk about whitewashing behavior. Are you Michelle Obama's appointed apologist? The woman said what she meant and I view both her and her socialist husband as un-American. Here's to hoping that they and their ilk are out of office come next January.

        September 6, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • epetedo

      @Keeker. Before the election of Obama as the president of the US, Dionne Warwick, Donna Summer, Whitney Houston, etc, were seemingly the only role models for black women: entertainers. These people are/were accomplished in their own right, needless to say.

      There are many well-educated, accomplished, successful, articulate, loving black women in America; but everybody including blacks, never talk about them. It's as if they do not exist, yet they are everywhere in both private and public administrations where you interact with them everyday.

      Yes, Michelle Obama has redefined what a black woman can be in America: the first lady of the United States of America.

      September 6, 2012 at 7:00 am | Report abuse |
  43. robin

    All,

    Don't respond to the disrespectful and ignorant comments regarding President Obama and the First Lady. The mentality of this country is the reason why America is where she is. As a Contracting Officer, I personally know that its the Republicans that are reaping the benefits of Government spending. The Government Contractors such as Lockhead, Booz Allen and Halliburton are laughing all the way to the bank and need their boy Romney to protect the DOD budget. Do not be fool; they are playing the middle class against each other; whites against blacks, hispancis against everyone. Big business and Government contractors want you think its President Obama fault; however, cut the DOD budget and you will really see what states will keep a surplus. Viriginia enjoy it why it lasts.

    September 5, 2012 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike(RetSrOfficerUSN/Former Contracting Officer)

      @ Robin... I've been there and retired after serving both on active duty for over 30 yrs and as a DOD Level III Contracting Officcer/Program Manager.. You are obviously new to the contracting game. Remember the Hatch Act when you post! Drop the DOD budget – sure, you will be one of the first to go since it's "last in – first out" with Government Service. Now, with that said, if you are following your contracting warrant properly you will refuse to allow awarding of contracts that are outrageous, you will have a COR (old COTR) that will manage the techinical and operational aspects of the contract to enforce it's requirements without allowing costly overruns. The biggest problem with the DOD is not it's budget, but the rediculous Acquisition Guidelines that we were forced to follow. They not only made little sense, but as a PM, were convoluted and costly, requiring repeated reviews by increasingly higher and higher levels in the chain of command – all just to put a rubber stamp on the program. Write the contract to properly address only the requirements, then enforce the requirements of the contract. Noncompliance is grounds for immediate termination at the convienence of the Government (T&C).

      September 5, 2012 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Mike

    She's a FIRST LADY, basically an extension of her husand's career path, which is all fine and good, but Condi Rice was the SECRETARY OF STATE – and an accomplished businesswoman on her own. Seriously CNN??? We're getting pretty tired of this constant liberal slant.

    September 5, 2012 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Keeker

      You are so right Mike 100%...................

      September 5, 2012 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sky

      CNN does publish opinion articles (note that this is marked as opinion, rather than "flat fact") from conservatives. Conservatives just have to care enough to come here to post their opinions. However there seems to be a rather healthy contingent of conservatives who seem to come to this cesspool of liberal bigotry (or whatever you wanna call it) seemingly for the singular purpose of complaining about it in the comments.

      Pray tell, what does CNN do that you *like* to read, since it seems to do nothing but be overwhelmingly and offensively liberal all the time?

      September 5, 2012 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mitch

      Rice was a sub-standard SOS, the bleating of race-whipped "conservatives" notwithstanding.

      September 5, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jim Herr

        Unfortunate appraisal.

        September 6, 2012 at 6:29 am | Report abuse |
    • John

      So, since we've had the first black President and first lady from one party, and two black Secretaries of State (one man, one woman) from the other, can we finally say that the race issue is over, please? If not, then can we please get a set of objective standards for when it will be over?
      I am sick to death of the nation being divided by race, gender, orientation, age, and every other possible split. Can we get rid of affirmative action and like programs to support one group over another and simply all live in a nation where, as Dr. King said, we are judged not by the color of our skin, but by the content of our character?

      September 6, 2012 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
      • susan

        Obama is not the first black president. Are you white? If you have a child with a black person does that make the child black? Of course not. I am white and would not my mixed child to be labeled as black, denying me as his mother, his heritage. Obama just happened to turn out darker than most biracial children. He is the first biracial president. He is just as much white as he is black.

        September 6, 2012 at 9:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lynda

      Well we know how YOU saw Condeleeza but black women did not see her as outspoken. She was not willing to disagree with the president even when he was blatantly wrong. We respect her because she is eloquent and educated but WE get to decide who we look up to just like you do. Condi is also perpetually single. I like the FLOTUS because she is also educated, elogquent, and manages to run a household, raise children, and be at the side of her husband. Nothing against Condi but Ms. Obama is like Condi plus.

      September 7, 2012 at 2:06 am | Report abuse |
  45. Valerie

    I love Michelle Obama. I am proud that she is representative as the First Lady of the United States.

    I also loved Laura Bush and she was much different than Michelle.

    September 5, 2012 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kent

      Well said, Valerie. Well said indeed!

      September 5, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rose1963

      Laura Bush was a First Lady while Michelle Obama is a celebrity

      September 6, 2012 at 8:49 am | Report abuse |
      • Lynda

        Actually no, both Laura and Michelle are First ladies. Neithere is a celebrity and it is wrong of you to try and knock the Flotus down as though she is a Kardashian. Give the lady the respect she has earned. Petty things show where your heart is.

        September 7, 2012 at 2:07 am | Report abuse |
      • Moon

        The Obama's spend more time cuddling with the media than they do anything else. Magazine covers, talk shows, etc.

        September 25, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  46. infidelbob

    The first Lady was inspirational and amazing regardless of color. To say that she redefined black women is a stretch. No one person could ever define such a large and diverse group.

    September 5, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • epetedo

      Every part makes the whole. Michelle Obama has contributed her substantial part to the whole, so it is n stretch at all to say that she has redefined the black woman.

      September 6, 2012 at 7:29 am | Report abuse |
  47. blade1975

    She's a trained actress. Politicians = actor.

    Bash Romney big money while you have a few hundred million yourself.
    Tell the kids to play for a hour after your husband tells schools to cut recess.
    She is nothing more than lying in physical movement as much as her husbands words.

    Rich, selfish, self rightous and as always not the blacks of America who sat at segurgation tables, but rich people who let their money drive their life.

    Nothing new here. Bush's did it, Clintons, regans, they all put on the show. Bravo to never paid for her school and hates America.... she can lie like the best of them.

    September 5, 2012 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • DeeDee

      How do you know Michelle Obama did not pay for her schooling?

      September 6, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • claire

      try 8 million

      September 20, 2012 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Kurdish boy

    Great respect and love from Kurdistan to Michelle Obama,,,,,She is really amazing lady, and she said some sadness words, which make us to fight hard to get to the epic.

    September 5, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Unafiliated

    "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

    I guess MLK is still dreaming.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • blade1975

      Just add in when your white your always the devil, and if your black you can get away with anything.

      Shamed to be black my 38 years on earth the way we act.

      September 5, 2012 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Deedrick

    Eloquent.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Cheryl

    Is there ever going to be a time where "race" isn't an issue? Can we try and be colorblind for a change? You cannot say anything about the current president and not be labeled "racist" or "right winged" just because you may not agree with everything that comes out of this administration. Michelle Obama is a beautiful, articulate woman...but so were many other first wives but I have never heard any of the OMG comments about any of them. They are people just like we all are. Why is color so important to so many?? I just don't understand the thought process of all of this. I want someone who truly cares about my country and where we are headed. We are in a real mess people and so many are not informed about the whole picture. I am really scared about what is going to happen to our country.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • blade1975

      Never gonna be color blind when the whiners of the world use color to get free food, education, ect,

      When the NOT slaves keep draining from the I was a slave fund, they will always want that free hand out.

      Why i left my neghiborhood and join the military least there I found respect from my rank and not my color.

      September 5, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
      • Fly Young Intellectual

        Dr. King's wish was not for a day when people would be "color blind" but when they would no longer be "color defined." I believe he wished for a day that we could recognize our differences but also celebrate our similarities.

        September 6, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  52. ed thorner

    I find it amazing that a speech given by a woman who was raised in Birmingham Alabama during the era of Democrats enforcing Jim Crow laws is ridiculed by CNN while a woman who has done nothing except be the wife of a political insider is glorified. But I suppose this is what passes as "jornolism" these days.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fly Young Intellectual

      Well if the State's Rights Republicans had their way, Condi still wouldn't be able to get a burger through the front door of a department store...That's the difference.

      September 6, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
      • sedcMom

        My sentiments EXACTLY!

        September 12, 2012 at 4:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Softship

      I so hope you realize that your "a woman who has done nothing except be the wife of a political insider " is way off the mark. She had got a fine education and had a big career before she went to Washington.

      September 11, 2012 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Unafiliated

    So tired of "men, women, black, white, yellow and red". Every time we place value on a person's individual worth based on their belonging to some group either by birth or in their private religious life, we diminish the person and humanity is cheapened. Michelle Obama is the First Lady of the United States of America. That is an accomplishment and position that transcends race. The very thing that is GOOD about society as we move on from the past is that we no longer care... but wait... according to this article, we still DO care. CNN, please stop the divisive rhetoric! I await a time, apparently in the far distant future, when we don't gaze at a successful person that looks like us and then use words like "we" and "us" when we talk about that person. The only "we" that is important in politics is in reference to Americans.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • vancouveral

      It may not seem as though progress is being made but think of 15/20 years ago and how the thought of a black President and First Lady would have been totally ridiculed. Now we can admire Michelle Obama for the great role model she is and where she came from. Truly the American Dream! What American can not be inspired.

      September 5, 2012 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
      • blade1975

        Your clocks is off try 40-60. 20 ago they were bending over backwards to have parades for the first black to buy chiqush.

        September 5, 2012 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
      • Unafiliated

        Let me put it this way. I am pleased to live in a country where it is possible for any American to become president, white black, Hispanic, Catholic, Mormon, Atheist, male, female. But as soon as we start talking about the blackness of the president or the First Lady, as if that is their first quality, then we are missing the point. Martin Luther King, Jr, advocated for a color-blind world. We aren't there yet.

        September 5, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  54. ralph white.

    And the WHITES..........Oh yea alot of class.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • blade1975

      My years growing up in a poor black neighborhood never saw the whites riot and whine about losing their free lunches.

      September 5, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
      • Lynda

        Well I'm black and I haven't seen it either. But my first job was working for Dept of Human Services and the majority of folks coming to get their food stamps and medicaid were white. That only makes sense considering they are the majority of the population. Thankfully I wasn't stupid like you so I didn't make the leap that all white people use social services. Get a clue, all black people are not on welfare. AS a single parent, my children did not receive free lunch. I am proud to say that I made too much money. But I don't fault those who need a hand up.

        September 7, 2012 at 2:12 am | Report abuse |
  55. Pt8685

    She's a great role model not becasue she has "a man". It because she has a husband!

    The difference is significant, as black households that have both husband and wife are far, far more healthy, happy, and successful than those who don't. Stable marriages are critical for improving the plight of African Americans and their children.

    But currently, 70% of black women are single and 50% of black men are unemployed, and it will take more than hope and change to improve those statistics. It will require significant changes in black culture – a issue that has been recognized by many of the most prominent African American scholars and social scientists.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • nessy

      Actually the 70% of black women are single comment you made is only for women age 25-29,by the age of 40, 67% of black women are married.The unemploment rate for black men is 14%. While this is incrediably high it is nothing like that rates you are listing. I found my rates at the US Dept of labor website and the US Census.

      September 9, 2012 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  56. vancouveral

    As a white man and non American I am envious that you have such an incredible role model for all girls/women world wide. It doesn`t matter what color, what ethnic background she inspires all. Even males can fall in love with what she is, America has a love/hate relationship with her and you are missing out on one of the most inspiring personalities of the 21st Century so far. History will be her legacy as one day all Americans will boast about the greatest First Lady ever.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • ralph white.

      YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Nicely said.

      September 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Unafiliated

      VancouverAl, Americans don't rank first ladies into the 'best ever' category. Don't know what it's like in Canada, but in the States, we almost always honor and respect First Ladies, sure there are some who can't forgive them for the politics of their party, bu those people are the minority. Michelle Obama is a great First Lady, as was Laura Bush, as was Hillary Clinton, as was Barbara Bush... They are all wonderful people that do a great deal to moderate the otherwise divisive nature of politics. For a nation that doesn't have a monarch, the First Lady often fills that role.

      September 5, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
      • vancouveral

        You are correct, I should have said "will be recognized as one of the most inspiring First Ladies ever to occupy the White House". The First Ladies usually take a back seat to their husbands but Michelle Obama has gone out on her own and raised issues that we all care about. No offence to Hilary, Barbara or Laura who were and continue to be wonderful women.

        September 5, 2012 at 4:01 pm | Report abuse |
      • Unafiliated

        vancouveral, it's common, and even expected in the US, for the First Lady (and eventual First Husband) to take on advocacy for an issue that isn't at the forefront like many other issues, but for which we could use a reminder to do better. Michelle Obama has advocated for military families and for reversing childhood obesity. Laura Bush, a former second grade teacher, worked for international childhood literacy, even being recognized by the UN for her efforts. Nancy Reagan worked to bring the dialog about drug abuse and addiction out of the shadows in order to improve the reach-ability of young people. Rosalynn Carter was an advocate for mental health policies. Among other things, Betty Ford was an advocate for breast cancer awareness, resulting in an increase in early diagnosis.

        September 5, 2012 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • sedcMom

      Well put!

      September 12, 2012 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Name*Jeri

    I agree, Michelle is a wonderful person, no matter what her color. She pumps women up everywhere, makes us know we are someone.
    She makes me proud to be a woman, because we, as women, matter & always have.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Richard Wad

    The article and its author are racist since they make this about persons of color.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Rose1963

    oh please

    September 5, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  60. LIFE

    I really hope people understand values, I pray people would realize you need to role up your sleeves and start working and not preaching, I believe its better to give and not recieve, so get all people back to work not just saying it will be better because its not better, we need leadership.

    September 5, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
  61. MD Finley

    People put down others to elevate themselves. I shall pray for all of you who feel a need to tear Michelle and Barack down. Really to tear down Mitt.Ryan as well. May the best family win according to the majority in votes will rule.

    Some folks should really consider refelecting on your bitterness and anger. Your words are a sign of your esteem in yourself. Healthy people lift others, not tear them down. Check in soon with your head doctor for guidance.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Herr

      The manner in which you say you will pray for others is condescending. Take your own medicine.

      September 6, 2012 at 6:36 am | Report abuse |
  62. Ben

    Coni rice? Single. Did everything on her own.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  63. Duane

    speech was nice but our jobless rate is a disgrace and our debt is out of control......big government is bad.....

    September 5, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  64. ABarker

    "As first lady of the United States, she represents everyone"

    No she doesn't. No more than any woman who has held that position before her or those who will hold it after she's gone.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Howard

      When Michelle spent TWENTY YEARS along side Barack, in Jeremiah Wright's 'God Damn America', anti-American, racist church, they swore allegiance to the church's 'Black Values' pledge, in which they promised to give preference in all matters to Black Americans, ahead of all other races. Therefore, when you say the first lady represents 'everyone' ... I'm sure that's the image her public relations people, and her speech writers want us all to believe.

      September 5, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
      • Rhonda

        There is no black values pledge at Trinity United Church of Christ. Please fact check.

        September 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Billy, NYC

    I wonder how many haters in this comment section are men. Some men just cannot stand women stepping out of the kitchens and becoming strong, educated, independent individuals. No wonder many Republicans want to introduce legislations to control women's rights to choice and keep them at home.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Jomm

    If anyone believe all black women are the same, that is their stupidity. I love Michelle and she is doing great however there have been many great black women famous and non famous long before her.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Rett's Vegas

    She is a woman 1st (with class), and black 2nd, her parents taught her that well.
    To be proud of being black is fine, BUT to be proud of who you are BEFORE you reffer to your race is the bottom line. She carries herself with class and dignity, and respect for all regardless of their race, or religion. She is light years ahead of many black women (and white) in that regard. She sets the bar for all those that have no respect for themselves on all those trashy reality shows, they could lean allot from her, that's for damn sure.

    MONEY CAN BUY ALLOT, BUT IT CAN'T BUY CLASS!

    September 5, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • jackthegeek

      African American women has been redefined long time ago by such honorable people like Condoleeza Rice and Oprah Winfrey. These are real women who has compassion and touched millions of people around the world. What did Michelle accomplish? Spending lavish vacations and expensive gowns, while lots of African American and other race are starved with poverty. I have seen first ladies before like Hillary Clinton and Barbara Bush who always wear simple coats and skirts when taken pictures in any occasions.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
      • TinaBoBina

        "Spending lavish vacations and expensive gowns, while lots of African American and other race are starved with poverty. I have seen first ladies before like Hillary Clinton and Barbara Bush who always wear simple coats and skirts when taken pictures in any occasions."

        Michelle wears everything from designer couture to dresses from H&M which are hardly "lavish". As do many women. So what exactly is your point? She's the First Lady so all sense of style she had before should just be chucked out of the window? Just because Hilary and Barbara dress boring doesn't mean that their clothing is cheap by any means. Please try again.

        September 13, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
  68. clownposse

    Wow, so she only represents African American women? I thought her and her husband were supposed to represent ALL Americans. I am sick and tired of hearing about how the media forgets to mention that her husband is half-white, he is always the first African American president........And the president doesn't correct them either. Neither of them represent all of Americans and CNN is nothing but a propoganda machine for the democrats. What ever happened to fair, balanced news? Opps, that died when the American people stopped using critical thought to choose candidates. Now it is sound bites of nonsense. How about solutions to the real problems? And by the way, both parties are doing the same stuff so there isn't alot of difference between either one of them.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jomm

      Oh clownposse, stop playing STUPID. You know what they mean. They do respresent all people in the JOB they are doing however, the Obamas are giving a good image to people however even more to blacks and are in the class of many blacks who give good images in the past and present. If the obamas were involved in bad behavior, you can believe people like you would judging.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jim Herr

        The scary part has been B. Obama representing the USA on the global stage.

        September 6, 2012 at 6:39 am | Report abuse |
  69. RWorthington

    Howard…so which one of President Obama’s books to you (we) write…since accordance to you view “we made him rich”…people like you are what so disappointing for a Nation trying to recover from such a difficult decade of war, financial problems, and the first attack against us at home more 60 years…we are all Americans, and President Obama didn’t create all of the problems we’re facing today…The hatred is very telling about you as a human being!

    September 5, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Howard

      ARE YOU REFERRING TO THE OBAMA BOOKS IN WHICH HE DECEIVED THE PUBLIC, WITH COMPOSITE CHARACTERS, AND COMPLETELY FABRICATED FACTS ABOUT HIS PAST. Michelle's B.S. about Barack's not blaming, or caring about getting credit, are laughable. Barack is one of the most ruthless, ambitious, diahonest, politicians on the planet. Actual video tape of him talking, reveals countless lies ... and, he has thrown so many people under the bus in his quest for power, it's not even funny. Remember Jeremiah Wright ???

      September 5, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Courtney

    Some of these horrible comments on this board is why I despise the right-wingers in this country with every fiber of my being. They tend to show they don't really have a heart or compassion for others. I believe God will judge them in time.

    September 5, 2012 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      So you take the posts of a few knuckleheads and apply that classification to an entire group of people?

      What's that called again? Mereotyping, that's it. Mereotyping. I knew it was a 'something'-typing.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rett's Vegas

      Better yet, the American voters will show them the light when Obama gets re-elected!

      Just say NO to Mitt-Rob-Me, and the GOP on Nov. 6th, please vote early, the GOP is comming to your town soon to restrict voting rights when ever possiable. they are truly deperate.

      Oh yes we can- 2008 Obama Elected
      Oh yes we did- Healthcare Reform (I proudly call my ObamaCare!)
      Oh yes we will- 2012 Re-Elect Obama so he can continue to work for us, the 99%!

      Independent , woman voter, from swing state NV,

      September 5, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • Duane

        yup.....and he added 5 trillion more to our debt, unemployment through the roof (watch the August report) and the economy at a stand still.....and you libs still are brainwashed by his BS......sad

        September 5, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Anita

    I cannot believe some of the posts on all of these articles. Surely you people that disrepect, disregard, condemn, and denigrate the Obamas are all perfect in your own right. I will NOT lower myself to address what some of you post. And you call yourselves AMERICAN!!

    September 5, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Herr

      A divisive President reaps what he sows.

      September 6, 2012 at 6:43 am | Report abuse |
  72. Blunt Talk

    I have admire Mrs. Obama and feel she is a great first lady. However this was the first time I didn't like hearing her speak. Maybe she does better with impromptu rather than scripted speeches. I just felt like she was more pleading like a TV evangalist asking for money. The content of her speech was fine but the presentation rub me a bit wrong. Perhaps it was the speech writer's fault. Laced in between valid points were far too many cliches and politically correct buzz words. She needs to be herself not what the the PR firms and speech writers think she should be. Unfortunately to me it came across very average.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Dean Ford

    This has nothing to do with RACE,Black women.....But again most Blacks only vote for Obama cause he is Black.
    What a joke......

    September 5, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • annebeth

      And most whites, are going to vote for the white guy. All Mormons will be voting for Mitt;and their sister wives too.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
      • flowerchild

        I'm white. I'm female. I'm Mormon. I have no sister wives. And I'm voting Democratic.

        September 5, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • AS

      Of course, it couldn't be that Black people do not see themselves in the GOP or that the issues supported by the GOP do not appeal to most of the Black populace or that most of the Black populace do not feel welcomed or even liked by the GOP. No, no...it has to be that 50% of Black people are racist so they don't vote GOP.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Charlotte

    Funny how all these haters are SO intimidated by a woman who has more class in her little finger than they could ever hope to scratch together in a lifetime. And no, 'class' has nothing to do with money. It has to do with a soul that is not putrid (like yours), a brain that functions (unlike yours) and a kindness and ethic and morality that you are incapable of grasping. You all are profoundly pathetic.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Courtney

    This is a response to the_dude,
    Your comment is cruel and mean, just like a lot of the Tea Party Republicans of today. I am a white women and Michelle Obama inspires me every singe day with her intelligence, beauty, grace, whit, compassion for others, and powerful physical appearance. She is a true American that has come from humble roots. Great article and I support her and her husband, President Obama in Nov. 2012.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Ted Baxter

    Michelle Obama is integrity, class and grace personified.

    If her speech last night had been any better, the floor would have been screaming, "Michelle for President!"

    September 5, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Kevin

    So when someone makes race the focal point of the article...and celebrates a person's skin color OVER another type of skin color...and then a poster comes on here and says, 'yeah, that bothers me a little that a person's skin color is fundamental - even necessary - to the author's deep affection for a person' then, Steve would call the poster racist. Sweet.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve S

      So you don't have a problem with other posters calling her every name from A-to-Z?
      But have a problem with ME, when I call them out on it?

      Sweeeeeet..........................................................................

      September 5, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      I do have a problem with name-calling. And I do see some racist posters here – so you do have a point.

      My point is that not all people who find this article's racial theme to be annoying, are racists.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Kevin

    This article says nothing about the substance of what Michelle said. But not surprising.

    Just a superficial, "mmmm, mmmmm, mmmm – we got a black woman in the White House and it makes me feel good" because she's black and speaks so well article. Talk about a "journalist" so caught up in the demigod status of Michelle Obama....geez. The pleasure she takes in saying the term "my First Lady" - is something the author admits she would never use for Laura Bush. It's language used to describe royalty...which is not very American.

    We'll get past articles like these in future generations....eventually.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  79. MLatino

    Don't get me wrong, I have respect for everything Condi Rice as done and accomplish, but Michelle Obama is a Harvard educated woman who was the bread winner in the Obama household well Barack moved up the political ladder. Michelle and Condi are two different sides of what it is to be a black woman. One is a very conservative southern woman who is a "Log Cabin" Republican and the other is a liberal northern city woman who is a Democrat. Both worked hard to get there and both had different goals in mind. Condi went into the political world, Michelle was a lawyer working with non-profits and government agencies. Both are extremely intelligent women who just have different views and put their talents in different areas.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • old golfer

      Actually, Condi went into the business world and then into the political arena. She was very high up the ladder with Chevron Oil Company. Michelle worked for the government. Do you see any difference in the path that these women took? Nah, thought not.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • annebeth

      So compare Laura Bush & Hilary Clinton; both are white women married to successful white men.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  80. marketoflife

    Maybe it's not them but you. With an ignorant train of thought you see what you want to see, not what is really there.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Butch

    You've gotta be kidding!

    September 5, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  82. chatmandu002

    Michelle is fine, but doesn't hold a candle to Condoleezza Rice. It's all about politics for Sophia Nelson and her love for the liberal/progressive Democrats.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rett's Vegas

      Condoleezza Rice had blood on her hands, she and the Bush Admin, ALL allowed the US into an unjust war for oil, nothing else.
      She is the ONLY one from the Bush Admin, to raise her head and speak, and no she not saying oops, sorry for that mistake. She is heartless, how does she & Bush sleep at night, do they not worship the same God we do, how can they be so evil.
      If I had lost a loved one in that war, I would have haunted her the rest of my days, always reminding the public what a muderer she was.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kent

      First, let me say that the African American community's bitterness towards Condi Rice is unfair. However, for you to downgrade Michelle Obama like she hasn't done nothing in comparison is you not understanding the point being made. As unfair as you might feel about it, Michelle Obama represents African American women in a way Condi never can (see poll where Romney gets 0% of the black vote). Doesn't mean Condi is not great (she is). But in the black community, Michelle is just plain better and speaks to them because she is them in so many ways.

      September 5, 2012 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jaye

      Depends on how you look at it. I think it takes amazing strength for any woman to become a breadwinner so her husband can do what he loves to do (in this case, activism). That is a sacrifice that many women do not take lightly. She has also achieved success in the business and political realm. I wouldn't choose either over the other...they are both fantastic. However, the article is about our FLOTUS, as clearly this article was written during the DNC!

      December 28, 2012 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
  83. Mike

    @John – If you or I grew up in a country/world where very few people who looked like us where in prominent and honorable positions in business, politics, movies, comics... whatever, we most certainly would question our ability to go further.

    September 5, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Bobby

    Meh. Strong black women have always existed. The problem is that the positive image is overpowered by the negative. What do you see more, the Nicki Minajs and basketball wives, or the MIchelle Obamas?

    September 5, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • AS

      You hit the nail on the head, Bobby. I am a huge admirer of Mrs. Obama and even Ms. Rice for their representation of strong, educated beautiful black women; however you are so correct in that this image is not one that is shown to the general populace. Media loves to perpetuate the stereotype of the loud black woman by throwing the Nikki Minaj's, Atlanta Housewives or Basketball wives in our faces. It's sad, but as long as there are these type of women out there, people who watch the crap and media moguls who support it, it will never change.

      September 5, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grant

      I agree 100% Bobby! Woman of Color like 1st Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Condi Rice our not talked about. We prefer to show Housevives, etc etc... No longer will the Mrs. Huxtable be shown on tv.

      September 5, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |