Stop the world. Michelle Obama is wearing shorts.

You step away from your computer for five minutes and the world goes to hell. I just received an email from a journalist wanting me to comment on the controversy over Michelle Obama's shorts. Her shorts. HER. SHORTS.

I hope you're sitting down because you may fall over when you see these pictures of America's First Lady disembarking from Air Force One WHILE ON VACATION with her family. What are those things on her legs? Wait, she has legs? She wears sneakers? Shorts? This is preposterous stuff. Well, it is for some who are outraged by Michelle's choice of clothing to go on a hike in the Grand Canyon. I agree with them. She should have worn a ballgown.

A UK newspaper reports…..

In an outcry which (almost) overshadows the the debate over the U.S. healthcare system, critics came out en masse to condemn Michelle's choice of clothing. A search for 'Michelle Obama shorts' became one of Google News's hot topics, with various headlines proclaiming the shorts to be 'hideous'.

However, there were many voices ready to defend the First Lady. One commentator for the LA Times wrote: 'Think about this for a minute. What should she have worn to the Grand Canyon? A tweed pantsuit? A ballgown? What do you wear on your summer vacation? Anyway, it's not like these shorts are hot pants. They are discreet, classic shorts.'


Others said the 'uproar' was 'fake outrage', and Newsweek had some sober analysis on the situation. The publication said: 'Because if there's not controversy, it's just the American public gawking at a woman's form. This is something that happens all the time, but needs to be cloaked in social relevance when the woman is not a traditional target for public consumption. Models, actresses, even athletes can be the subject of objectification, but to ogle the first lady on national TV requires a bit of news-related window dressing.'

Ah, now I think Newsweek makes a really interesting point. Women like looking at pictures of what other women wear. We do. No shame in that. Have you met Frockwatch? But mainstream media needs to justify running pictures of Michelle Obama simply because she's wearing something interesting so whenever they want to, they have to manufacture a story around it.

Here are two photos that caused huge 'controversy' for being 'hideous outfits'.

Oh come on. Are they that bad? I think she looks great and I love that she takes the odd risk.

I've worn far worse. In fact I'm wearing far worse now. And isn't fashion just meant to be a bit of fun anyway? Do you have to get it right ALL the time?

The more high profile women – and I can think of virtually no higher profile woman in the world right now – can be given some space and latitude to be normal, the better. We ALL get it right and wrong with our clothes sometimes. Big deal. We all wear shorts. We all have legs.

I think MIchelle Obama is the freshest air we've seen in a female role model for a long time. Shorts and all.

Why do you think we're so fascinated with what other women wear? Is there too much pressure to always get it right?



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