Opinion: Hey Little Ethan, you too Can Grow Up and Be President!

A clear message is being sent to little white boys across America that no matter their past, they can easily grow up and become governors, U.S. congressmen, U.S. Supreme Court justices, or even a U.S. president. A clear message is being sent to them that they won’t be held accountable for any wrongdoings they decide to participate in prior to becoming a politician. A clear message is being sent to them that they are held to a much lower standard than everybody else. They’re learning that there is one other requirement to excelling to some of the highest political offices in America other than just being white and male; and that other requirement is: never admit guilt for wrongdoings. They’re learning that if they follow this plan, nearly all other white, male politicians and most white, female politicians will stay quiet about, marginalize, or excuse their wrongdoings.

They’re learning that by simply being born to the right father comes with major privilege. Even as recent as the past thirty years, they’ve learned being the son of a CIA director (George H.W. Bush) or being the son of an ex-president (George W. Bush), or being the son of millionaire (Donald Trump), can make them a shoo-in for the highest office in the land. I don’t think it’s worth writing about these men’s educational backgrounds because it’s widely accepted that the former Bush presidents got into Yale on pure legacy and Trump got into the Wharton School because of family wealth. Also, I don’t think anyone would mistake these men for Rhodes Scholars (especially G.W. Bush or Trump).

These boys are also learning that they can have a history of, or be accused of, ephebophilia and child molestation, white supremacy, racial insensitivity, sexual assault, etc. and still be elected or appointed to some of the highest political offices in the land- if they never fully admit to these immoralities. This may help explain why even in the 2010s, so many white high school aged boys and white college aged young men, openly perform or participate in some of the most egregious behaviors while being a member of what has been dubbed a “post-racial generation” (laughing).

Meanwhile, little Black boys learned that if they want to grow up to be governors, U.S. congressman, U.S. supreme court justices, or even a U.S. president, they must have biographies like Deval Patrick, Cory Booker, Thurgood Marshall, and Barack Obama. They’re learning that not only must they have similar biographies to these men, they’re also learning that they must have the temperament of these men. These men didn’t come to the table with a family name, family fortune, and legacy college degrees. And yes, even little white girls are learning that they can become First Lady of the U.S. even if she was once a nude model, lies about her education, and even plagiary. On the other hand, little Black girls are learning that they should bust their tails to get into Princeton and graduate cum laude, earn a law degree (J.D.) from Harvard Law School, become an associate at a law firm, become an associate dean earning over $270K annually and may even decide to leave that position to support her husband’s presidential campaign- all while growing up in a blue-collar family. I’m not sure whether I should embrace these double standards or puke over them.

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