Kathleen Parker describes herself as “an angry white woman.” This chagrin is the result of what the headline on Kathleen's column calls the “‘angry black woman’ slur” against first lady Michelle Obama.
Kathleen is a friend and I am an avid reader of her column, but I must take issue with this sentence:
If the first lady isn’t angry, she certainly has every right to be.
The matter at hand is whether a new book, "The Obamas," by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, portrays Mrs. Obama as an angry black woman. Kathleen opines that the book is “enough to resurrect the angry-woman mantra that began when Barack Obama started his run for president.”
From what I’ve read about the Kantor book, it does nothing of the kind. It is your typical insider account of what goes on behind the scenes in the White House. Like many of the genre, it reports that there are tensions between a protective first lady and several of the president’s aides. Kantor alleges that Mrs. Obama has had conflicts with former Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanual and former Press Secretary Robert Gibbs (who can blame her?).
Mrs. Obama is also seen as reluctant to carry out certain duties such as the annual congressional spouses luncheon.
White Houses always push back against these books. What made this unfortunate was that the first lady herself went on CBS to claim in an interview with Gayle King that she was depicted as an “angry black woman.”
Keith Koffler of White House Dossier has the quote:
I guess it’s more interesting to imagine this conflicted situation here and a strong woman and a – you know, but that’s been an image that people have tried to paint of me since the day Barack announced, that I’m some angry black woman.
It is too bad that the first lady injected the bogus issue of race into discussions of the book. There is just no justification for it.
Mrs. Obama and Kathleen, knock it off on the angry woman bit already!