The Connector
The Connector
Graphic by Allison Bolt

The first lady of our nation appears to be missing. Driven by simple curiosity, I decided to Google what she’s been up to since her husband has been in office. Upon typing in “Melania Trump” to Google, it was autocompleted to “What does Melania Trump do?” Considering autocomplete suggestions work on a popularity basis, it’s clear I’m not alone in wanting to know what our first lady is doing.

Oh, how I miss the days of Michelle Obama visiting schools, crafting healthier cafeterias and hosting work out events for “Let’s Move!” (her campaign to end childhood obesity). She represented the role of the elegant first lady perfectly in her classy outfits and smiling public appearances. She showed the importance of family, excelled at redecorating the White House – a tradition for the American First Lady – and always appeared next to President Obama with a loving smile. Michelle Obama was a true role model for American women.

The first lady of the United States of America should be a role model. She, just as her husband, represents our country. Yet, Melania Trump seems to be completely absent. The last news I really remember hearing about our first lady took place in August when she strutted into South Texas, which had been demolished by Hurricane Harvey, wearing stilettos. I remember wondering if this absurd stunt would become daily news but instead, Melania and her stilettos scurried into hiding.

As the months passed by, it was clear our first lady wasn’t in hiding. Rather, she was simply not interested in claiming her new job title. My suspicions were confirmed upon reading a Vanity Fair article where a close friend of the Trumps revealed Melania Trump didn’t want to become first lady “come hell or high-water.” This outlook on the role of first lady reflects in her low approval rating. According to Vice Impact, only 28 percent of Americans approve of Melania Trump while fifty-three percent of Americans approved of Michelle Obama.

Melania’s indifference toward her new role revealed itself immediately after the inauguration. Instead of moving into the White House with her husband, she remained in his New York penthouse for five months after the inauguration, claiming she wanted their son Barron to finish his school year. Melania’s decision concerning her son’s education could be seen as good parenting — that is, until you take a look at how Michelle Obama and all the first ladies before her handled it.

Upon President Obama’s inauguration, Michelle Obama immediately arrived at the White House with their two girls, Malia and Sasha. The Washington Post even published an article concerning the Obama’s extended parenting decisions when it came to the girl’s education and school. Michelle Obama began decorating their new home to make it comfortable for the whole family before launching her take on the tradition of a first lady campaign.

What is Melania Trump’s first lady campaign? At the inauguration, she declared her campaign to end cyberbullying but has she reached out to any activist, leaders, or organizations that work to end cyberbullying? She did give a speech in September at the United Nations concerning cyberbullying, but the speech received backlash due to her husband’s social media scandals. This leaves the First Lady in a difficult place. Not only is she is attempting to pretend that she cares about cyberbullying while she’s married to the President-king of cyberbullies, she obviously has no interest in the duties of a first lady.

If Melania isn’t afraid to speak to her bully of a husband, maybe she should consider telling him to resign so she can be relieved of all this first lady business.