Oprah, God and #BlackGirlMagic
As we look ahead to the 2020 presidential elections, only two things have been established so far: We are waiting on Oprah, and Oprah is waiting on God.
Oprah never said she wanted to be president, but ever since her show-stopping speech when receiving her Cecil B. deMille award in January, heralding change for women and girls, the nation has both championed her candidacy, and also expressed disdain at the very idea.
But let’s make one thing clear: if Oprah wants to be president, she will be president.
Oprah is both the nation’s matriarch and a modern Queen Midas, who has amassed a $2 billion fortune as a talk show host, actress, producer and proprietor of her own TV network and magazine. Almost everything she touches turns to gold. Her preferences in literature puts authors on the bestseller list, and her favorite things will now be showcased on The View.
One thing I think we can all agree on is, whatever Oprah likes is fabulous.
I was listening to a SuperSoul podcast the other day, and the sponsor was Poo~Pourri, which is a scented spray you can use on the toilet after pooping, something I took to be one of Oprah’s favorite things. I took a second to marvel at the notion that Oprah may poop, which I had never once considered, and then imagined her slipping Poo~Pourri out of her purse and leaving public toilets across the land smelling like lavender. (The product, which you can find here, has a stink-free guarantee.)
You may think that none of this makes her a good presidential candidate, but what is a good presidential candidate anymore, and does it matter? The main thing is, Oprah does not like to fail, and her social skills are excellent. She is the only person in the world who could probably break Vladimir Putin’s grim exterior, and find out how he felt about his mother, or discover that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s insecurities stem from his weight problem.
If anyone could achieve world peace within a year or two, it’s Oprah. National Geographic would publish a photo montage of people all over the world, living in castles and forests alike, peacefully reading selections from Oprah’s book club, Poo~Pourri spritzers nearby.
With Oprah anything is possible. She is hardly new on the national stage, but remains one of the brightest flames in the age of #BlackGirlMagic, which is a hashtag that celebrates the growing number of powerful, vocal, talented black female powerhouses in country who are rising up in unprecedented numbers.
When Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, we asked ourselves if we were ready for a black president, as if we had all just tumbled out of caves, or had forgotten that we just had 219 straight years of white male presidents.
But I firmly believe, and this is no joke, that we are more than ready for a black woman to be president. I think we are far more ready for a black woman to be president than a white woman, in fact — I can’t think of a single white woman who could make it past the primaries right now.
But I’ll tell you who could: Michelle Obama. By my estimation, she is the only person who could beat Oprah. She is intelligent, powerful, charismatic, and — best of all — real. My favorite example Michelle Obama’s authenticity is the expression wore all throughout the ceremonies on Inauguration Day in 2017, when they passed 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., and the nation, onto the Trumps:
She wore some version of this expression all day, instead of the gracious, plastic first-lady smile she was supposed to have had. We need a president with a good side-eye. We just do.
Viola Davis is my third choice for president in 2020. She gave this amazing speech in January at the Women’s March in Los Angeles, thundering calls for activism and justice.
Beyoncé comes in at number four, only because anyone who could begin a song with the line, Who the fuck do you think I is? would not take shit from anyone, at least not for long. The only one in the world confident enough to stand up to Beyoncé is Blue Ivy, and that would work to our national advantage.
While only one of my four picks for president in 2020 has any political experience — Michelle Obama — any one of the three would make solid presidents. Why? The reasons are spelled out in their speeches, which invariably call for equality, justice and human rights, a stark contrast to what so many white men have said when given their platforms.
Viola Davis, for example, said something in January that so few presidents, prime ministers, national leaders or public representatives seem to know:
“Every single day your job as an American citizen is not just to fight for your rights, it’s to fight for the right of every individual that is taking a breath, whose heart is pumping and breathing on this earth.”
These are the messages that will move us forward. Bring it on, #BlackGirlMagic2020.
Photo Credit: cover via Variety