Michelle Obama: Not that 'influential'?

(LIN) — What does Michelle Obama have in common with Guy Fieri and Lance Armstrong?

According to a recent year-in-review list, they just really aren’t all that important.

GQ magazine released the 25 Least Influential People of 2012 list and have dubbed it “a collection of people so uninspiring that we should round them all up and stick them on an iceberg.”

Fortunately, or unfortunately, the publication notes that the 25 on the list are listed in no particular order “because all zeros are created equal.”

Obama’s description reads:

"t was a game effort by the first lady to get Americans to eat healthier. She founded the ‘Let’s Move!’ campaign to get our children to contemplate forward locomotion. She even wrote a book about growing her own vegetables, which many people bought as a passive-aggressive way of telling someone they’re fat ... You tried, Mrs. Obama. You really did. Sorry we're such poor listeners."

Her description isn’t as pointed and harsh as others ( Amanda Bynes’ entry was pretty curt), but it brings up an interesting talking point: Just how much does the first lady have to do to be considered influential?

Rosalynn Carter brought national awareness to the performing arts and took strong interest in mental health.

Nancy Reagan launched the “Just Say No” campaign. This became her primary initiative as first lady and worked hand-in-hand with her husband’s declaration of the War on Drugs.

Barbara Bush founded the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, encouraging reading at a young age to build stronger, more responsible adults for America’s future.

Hillary Clinton, now Secretary of State Clinton, spent her time reaching out to the foster care community, leading the effort on the Foster Care Independence Act to help older unadopted children transition to adulthood.

Laura Bush was a strong supporter of President George W. Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act. Through that program, she was an advocate for Reading First, the country’s largest early-reading initiative.

No matter how far back you go, women of the White House do quite a bit of influential work to not only support their husband’s agenda, but to further their own projects for the good of American people.

Michelle Obama has no reason to feel ineffectual and unimportant, or even close to the same level of insignificance as Hulk Hogan. To bring about positive change, no matter how great or small, is something to be noted and appreciated.

Maybe it’s too soon to tell if childhood obesity rates are dropping, or if her initiatives have had an effect on the overall health Americans, but she has brought great awareness to health concerns and promoting healthy eating choices over all – a feat that is influential in and of itself.

Should she find herself still feeling low about making the list, she should be happy she at least didn’t appear first on the list where ranking doesn’t matter.

That spot is reserved for her husband’s 2012 campaign rival, Mitt Romney.

Ladies First is a biweekly feature centered around the first lady of the United States. Jessica O. Swink is a contributing editor to onPolitix. Join in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Copyright 2014 LIN TV News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Political Pulse

Did you like this article? Vote it up or down! And don't forget to add your comments below!

Like It
Don't Like It


We welcome your thoughtful comments. Be the first to participate in the discussion. All comments will display your username and avatar.


Add a Comment

Sign in or join now to post a comment. All comments will display your username and avatar.


Indiana (change)

Indiana politics enter a new era as MIke Pence prepares to take over as the next governor.
Offices & Officials

Contacting the White House and Congress

Click the links below to get in touch with your elected officials.