Dance Moms

obama dance

As President Obama enters his second term, he’s making more use of his secret weapon: his wife, Michelle.

Call her the administration’s lighter side. Michelle is warm and funny while her husband is forced to be stern and serious. Recently, she’s been everywhere. She was on Jimmy Fallon Friday night, showing off some “mom” dance moves, culminating in her own rendition of the Dougie. The dance routine comes on the heels of the media buzz on Michelle’s new hairstyle, specifically the debut of her bangs.  Someone even started a Twitter account, @FirstLadysBangs, devoted to the new look.  Michelle laughs off the hair hubbub, calling the bangs “her midlife crisis,” coinciding with her recent 49th birthday.

Humorous and lighthearted, sure.  But it’s packing a punch for a greater purpose.

That hilarious mom dance routine? It was publicity for the First Lady’s Let’s Move campaign, encouraging moms to dance with their kids to keep them active. As with many first ladies before her, Michelle has taken a particular cause under her wing and promotes it at every opportunity. Laura Bush focused on literacy, Nancy Reagan on “Just Say No” to drugs, Rosalyn Carter on mental illness and Betty Ford on addiction treatment and recovery. Michelle is passionate about halting childhood obesity and is in the enviable position of being able to promote her cause, largely unfettered by politics.

In these times of tense debt ceiling negotiations, gun violence, and sequesters, it’s refreshing to have an issue that nearly everyone agrees on. Michelle has planted gardens, interviewed Big Bird and now, she’s even done the Dougie. She’s promoting a good cause, and having fun doing it. Perhaps the rest of the government could take a lesson from Michelle.

A little laughter and a smile can be a great way to get your point across. Plus, wouldn’t a U.S. Congress Harlem Shake video be just epic?

Published by Alex Petros

Alex Petros is a staff writer for The Politic from Lexington, Kentucky. Contact him at alexander.petros@yale.edu.

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