Media mavens gasped with delight and surprise when Michelle Obama showed up via videolink to present the Best Movie award at the Oscars on Sunday. You might wonder their reaction if Mitt Romney had been elected and his wife Ann showed up.
But it's not really much of a shocker for Michelle to show up. After all, Hollywood was among Obama's biggest group of supporters and in turn, Hollywood's rich and powerful got hundreds of millions in tax breaks in the fiscal cliff deal at the same time America's middle and lower income workers saw a huge tax increase. Besides, Michelle never turns down an opportunity to party!
But it's what Michelle said in her remarks that really perked my interest. She praised Hollywood as an example to our children:
MICHELLE OBAMA: “These lessons apply to all of us – no matter who we are or what we look like or who we love, but they are especially important for our young people. Every day, through engagement in the arts, our children learn to open their imagination, to dream just a little bigger , and to strive every day to reach those dreams. And I want to thank all of you here tonight for being part of that vitally important work.”Was part of that "vitally important work" the Hollywood films that motivated the Aurora, Colorado shooter at the theater showing the Batman movie last year? Was it that deranged killer's imagination that was stimulated with the goal to "dream just a little bigger" in the planning for his crime? And what about the Newtown school shooter. We know the role violent video games, which go hand in glove with Hollywood movies, played in the Adam Lanza's spiral into evil.
Then there's mass murder which goes on in Obama's hometown of Chicago every single day despite some of the strictest gun control laws in the country. Young black men killing each other and innocent children along with them. Do these shooters "learn to open their imagination, to dream just a little bigger" because of the violence they see depicted on screen?
Django Unchained won an Oscar Sunday night. It's the film where star Jamie Foxx, who called Obama our "lord and savior," joked that "I kill all the white people in the movie. How great is that?"
Here's a clip from the film. Tell me this is art....
Michelle Obama: "our children learn to open their imagination, to dream just a little bigger."
It's no coincidence that in Obama's great gun grab campaign we hear next to nothing about the erosion of cultural values by violent Hollywood films. Such a declaration would get in the way of a good party for Michelle and might endanger Obama's reputation with his best friends, the Hollywood super rich!