Michelle Obama has declared that “any woman who voted against Hillary Clinton voted against their (sic) own voice.” In addition to its grammatical error, the former First Lady’s statement seems substantively incoherent. What does she mean by a woman voting against her own voice? How, exactly, does that happen?
I assumed Ms. Obama meant that any woman who voted against Clinton voted against her interests. But the former First Lady’s explanation goes in a somewhat different direction. She said:
[E]verybody’s trying to worry about what it means for Hillary [that so many women voted for Trump] and no, no, no — what does this mean for us as women? That we look at those two candidates, as women, and many of us said, ‘He’s better for me. His voice is more true to me.’ To me that just says, you don’t like your voice. You just like the thing you’re told to like.
This only adds to the confusion. If women voted for Trump because they thought “his voice is more true to me,” how does it follow that they were voting against their own voice? Ms. Obama appears to believe that women possess some inner voice that should have overridden the surface appeal of Trump’s voice, an appeal that stemmed in her view from what they were “told to like.”
This sounds like a variation of the old communist standby, “false consciousness.” Women who thought Trump’s voice was more true to them were seduced by a false consciousness, imposed from the outside, to betray their true inner consciousness (or voice).
It’s not surprising to find traces of academic communism in Michelle Obama’s thinking.
Who was it, though, who told women to like Trump’s voice? It must have been men.
Thus, Ms. Obama appears to be saying that the tens of millions of women who voted for Donald Trump did so because they refused to think for themselves and, instead, liked what they were told to like by men. She is indulging in a disrespectful, sexist stereotyping of women.
I suspect that Hillary Clinton agrees. If so, that conviction probably helps explain why so many women found Trump’s voice “more true” to them.