Ingeborg van Teeseling

First things first: Michelle was who we deserved, not Melania

Jacket-gate has me longing for a first lady befitting the title. It might be an obvious point, but her predecessor was the one we deserved. Let’s not forget her.



And then there was Jacket-gate, where the usually silent First Lady finally spoke and the rest of the world wished she hadn’t. It reminded me of another woman in her position, the one who seems like a dream now, a lovely hazy memory of when the world was a more hopeful place. Remember?

Remember this:

Please take the fifteen minutes or so to watch it. It will make you smile and cry at the same time. To see what we lost.

We had a real person there for a while. Somebody with a wicked sense of humour, who was intelligent and knew who she was. Centred, sure of herself, sexy in a completely natural way. The feminist we needed, who did care and wasn’t afraid to say so. Who was verbal and joyful and smart and had an urge for freedom that was hard to ignore. She could rock it out and get her freak on, and more than 62 million people watched.

Michelle Obama is the symbol, now, for me, of how the world has suddenly changed. Not the men, although they are also hard to compare, but the women.

Can we not do something to get her back?


Ingeborg van Teeseling

After migrating from Holland ten years ago and being warned by the Immigration Department against doing her job as a journalist, Ingeborg van Teeseling became a historian instead. She endeavours to explain Australia to migrants new and old at her website, and runs, telling people's life stories.

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