Malia Obama was recently caught in the act of being a normal college student. Chaos ensued.
Two weeks ago, TMZ released a video and photos of Obama kissing her boyfriend, Rory Farquharson, and smoking a cigarette at a Harvard-Yale football game. Those who made it their moral duty to criticize the former first-child and her younger sister during their father’s time in office are once again thriving.
Why is she kissing someone she’s not married to? Why is she flaunting her interracial relationship? Why is she smoking? Why is she holding the cigarette like that? Why does she think she can get away with this? Why is she having fun instead of studying 24/7? Why is she actually having a life for the first time in eight years?
Why is my grown, adult-self criticizing this 19-year-old college student for being a normal college student at college?
But this wasn’t the end. Soon after, a leaked Snapchat video of Obama blowing smoke rings was posted on the Barstool Sports Instagram account. The video has since been deleted, but unwarranted attacks on Obama have yet to boil down.
Critics with nothing better to do spent time analyzing the video, one claiming that Obama must be a “heavy pot smoker” since, apparently, being able to “blow o-rings” requires experience, and that makes her “trash,” just like her father.
Since Obama’s boyfriend is white, white supremacists also spun the situation as an opportunity to attack the students’ relationship for promoting "miscegenation."
In the midst of the criticism, Chelsea Clinton and Ivanka Trump came to Obama’s defense, asserting that her privacy should be respected.
Assuming that friends of the former first-daughter leaked the smoke rings video themselves, some defenders offered advice for finding better friends, while others condemned The Daily Caller for further spreading the video on social media.
This support sparked a mini-movement advocating for Obama’s rights to privacy and being a normal college student, eventually trending #LeaveMaliaObamaAlone on Twitter.
Regardless of one’s personal views of kissing people or smoking, Obama deserves to have complete discretion over her personal decisions without the threat of ridiculous and sometimes blatantly racist criticism.
For eight years of the most crucial developmental period of her life, Obama was expected to be perfect at all times. She finally has the opportunity to live authentically, and that’s exactly what she’s doing.
She is in college. At Harvard.
And judging from the language exhibited in most of her critics’ tweets, she's doing better than most.
Instead of focusing on why Obama has the audacity to live her life, let’s worry about more pressing issues, like allegations of sexual harassment and assault against a growing list of politicians and celebrities.
Or the ongoing investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. What about the current proceedings of Congress? Or the fact that sex-trafficking victim Cyntoia Brown is serving a life sentence for self-defense.
Focus on yourself, your own kids, your own morals, your own choices. Focus on real news, not tabloids capitalizing off the lives of private citizens. Malia Obama, along with her sister Sasha and current first-kid Barron Trump, should be off limits.