The entire internet is howling this morning about a "rude" and "boorish" lesbian protester who should run to her lesbian bedroom and bawl shameful lesbian tears after causing a ruckus while First Lady Michelle Obama was speaking at a fundraiser last night:
Ellen Sturtz, who paid to attend the Democratic fundraiser at a private home in western Washington state, interrupted the First Lady to demand that the President sign an executive order banning workplace discrimination. According to a press pool report, Michelle “left the lectern and moved over to the protester.” The pool report quoted Obama as saying: “Listen to me or you can take the mic, but I’m leaving. You all decide. You have one choice.”
The crowd cheered for their favorite! They preferred to listen to Michelle Obama—duh, it was Democratic Fundraiser, and she's Michelle Obama, so it's not a hard choice—instead of the impolite interloper. Security marched Sturtz out of the room while she hollered that she's “a lesbian looking for federal equality before I die.”
Praising the FLOTUS this morning, Mary Elizabeth Williams says that it was a "win" for the first lady and lamented that the "headline-grabbing outburst is a common ploy, one that, it depresses me to say, is far too often used by those of us here on the crunchy left."
I totally agree with her about the overused, crunchy tactic—and I think Michelle did win—but I think that gay-rights protester won too. And she has Michelle to thank for it.
If the first lady had just kept talking, hit the silent alarm (I like to imagine there's a red button under that lectern), or waited at the podium till security escorted Sturtz from the room, that kerfuffle would have been a media blip. But Michelle Obama was such an incredible bad-ass, a brassy diva about the whole thing that NOW WE CAN'T STOP TALKING ABOUT IT. America is talking about the president's authority to "issue an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against employees based on sexual orientation or gender identity.”
Thanks to Michelle Obama's awesome smackdown, this wound up far more high-profile that than a typical, crunchy heckle. Everyone wins.
PS — Dear President Obama: Please "issue an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against employees based on sexual orientation or gender identity.”
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