Obama in the Window

My wife (I’ll call her “The Dog Walkerer”) makes daily rounds of many Portland neighborhoods in the course of her work. Lately, she has been noticing many homes sporting portraits of Barack Obama in the front window (or, in one case, the back window of a camper). Many, if not most, appear to be home-fashioned -- that is to say, not cranked out and distributed by campaign headquarters. Has anyone else noticed the same? When was the last time we had a politician that inspired people to do this? Have you spotted any homes with John McCain’s portrait in the window (let alone a lawn sign)? Has anyone else commented on this phenomenon?

To me, it conjures the image of a good Irish Catholic home proudly hanging parallel portraits of JFK and the Pope over the kitchen table. Sure, Republicans could easily denigrate this trend as just another example of mindless adoration of Obama, viewing him as a walk-on-water messiah. They might argue that it proves that his popularity is just another bout of celebrity worship. I think there’s a lot more to it.

Recent McCain commercials juxtapose Obama with Britney Spears and Paris Hilton, as if his supporters are enraptured only because he’s “so awesome.” The truth is that people obsess about Britney and Paris mostly because they’re walking, talking train wrecks who frequently forget to don undergarments. We fixate on some celebrities the same way we slow down when passing a bloody car crash. But some people become stars for better reasons: we admire their accomplishments; they inspire us; they give us hope …

McCain’s ads miss the distinction while also communicating a clear message to the millions of people who support Obama: "You’re stupid!" Maybe that’s a smart ploy in political marketing. I hope not.

1 comment:

culturejock said...

Have you seen Paris's response?