On the campaign trail in 2008, Michelle Obama spoke at a rally and told the American people that for the first time in her adult life, "I am proud of my country." The backlash was swift, as news commentators and politicians of all creeds and colors—black, white, male and female—implied that she was Barack Obama’s angry, bitter wife. In other words, they could not understand Michelle Obama outside of the angry, Black woman stereotype.

Before winning the Iowa Straw poll this past weekend, however, Michele Bachmann made a similar statement. But instead of being lambasted for not appreciating her country, the media has ignored her almost identical comment. 

On MSNBC’s The Last Word last night, Melissa Harris-Perry offered a comparison of the two responses, and her own definition of equality: "We will be an equal society when we can all celebrate and criticize our country together."

Anna Lekas Miller