Monday, February 2, 2009

Overheard on the Treadmill

by Pa Rock
Shameless Eavesdropper

Saturday, or perhaps Sunday, while I was resolutely marching to Pretoria on the treadmill at the gym, I had the pleasure of listening to two ladies who were talking at least as fast as they were walking. Well, it wasn't that pleasurable, but it did turn out to be interesting.

If I were a cop I would have typed this chatty duo as a couple of middle-aged soccer moms. Instead of talking kids or soccer, however, they were focused on politics. The first topic on the table was abortion. Arizona is a fairly conservative state, and I expected their opinions to be somewhat to the right of John McCain - and one was. The one on the left felt that it should be a woman's decision, while the other, obviously a good friend, felt that God was in charge of women's bodies - at least after conception. Their conversation was animated, but far short of the intensity level that would have arisen on MSNBC or Fox in a panel discussion on the same subject.

They found themselves agreeing on the next topic of conversation: President Obama. As soon as his name was mentioned, I was anticipating an explosion of vitriol, at least from the one who was so negative on the subject of abortion. Surprisingly, however, they both liked Obama - and for the same reason. They talked about him being a family man and how nice it was that he sat down with his family for breakfast and dinner.

Now I think that I have a sense of why the President's approval rating is above seventy percent. His occupation (politician) and his race are both seen as secondary to his warm presentation as a caring and involved husband and father. There will be many who disagree with his politics and economics, but everyone has a sense of what constitutes a good family man, and Barack Obama is meeting that standard.


xobekim said...

It's not race, his race is human, its ethnicity.

I agree with everything else.

Pa Rock's Ramble said...

Good point. I stand corrected!