Happy Presidents Day! We thought about doing a Top Ten about nice things our dear American presidents have done for the homogay community, but unfortunately nobody has really ever done anything for us until like last year. So instead I proposed “Ten Hottest First Ladies” but somehow that seemed inappropriate or objectifying or something so we changed the title to:
TOP TEN FIRST LADIES OF ALL TIME EVER
10. Edith Wilson (28th)
Edith was the first female president of the United States. Because of the patriarchy, her husband Woodrow Wilson is commonly cited as the 28th president of the United States. However, Woodrow had a stroke in 1819 so Edith just ran the g-ddamn show and nobody even knew that Woodrow was sick until he died in 1924. They’d never get away with this now because of TMZ and the internet, hello look what happened to Jed Bartlett.
9. BETTY FORD (38th)
Probably when your children have children, they’ll just think Betty Ford was a famous Interventionist because of the Betty Ford Center (home-away-from-home for our Lady Lohan) and they will not even know that Betty was “a housewife who argued passionately for equal rights with women, a mother of four who mused about drugs, abortion and premaritial sex aloud and without regret” or that she was pro-choice, a staunch feminist, and big into the equal rights amendment. According to one source, Betty Ford wore a mood ring once, which are a sign of devil worship and evidence that you went to the bowling alley and put a quarter in that thing and got a mood ring from when things were still groovy.
Also, Betty Ford is from Michigan! GRAPIDS 4LYFE.
7. Abigail Adams (2nd)
“In the new code of laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make, I desire you would remember the ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power in the hands of the husbands. Remember, all men would be tyrants if they could…
Abigail Adams was a feminist before feminists burned bras because instead they wore corsets or whatever. In that picture it looks like she has a nice rack, but that could just be the artist. Anyhow she had this idea that women should be allowed to go to school too and that slaves shouldn’t be slaves, which back in the stone age was very revolutionary.
Also she did not let these pressing issues get in the way of her passion for fashion, because she “believed that the more revealing Napoleonic-style clothing then popular were too indecorous.” I don’t even know what that word means, but I bet girlfriend was speaking the TRUTH.
6. Rosalynn Carter (39th)
All of you who are crazy, which includes most of the people who work here, should get down on your knees and thank Rosalynn for being such an advocate for Mental Health. She even testified before a Senate committee on behalf of the Mental Health System Bill (second first lady to ever testify before the Senate committee) because you know, what would I do without my Wellbutrin and what would you do without your Seroquel. Yell at each other, that’s what. And everyone should be really nice and be in love all the time, forever and ever.
She made the Rosalynn Carter Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism (giving journalists the cash to do serious reporting on mental health/mental illness related topics to promote public awareness and erase stigma) and worked on legislation and lawmaking which contributed to the 2008 passing of a bill requiring parity in health insurance coverage for mental illness.
She does a million other things too, like Habitat for Humanity, which was the only thing I knew about her husband until whenever we learned that part of history in school.
5. Lady Bird Johnson (36th)
Lady Bird Johnson wrote a really good blog. Like a really fucking awesome blog. However this was back in the paleolithic era, before computers or blogs existed, so it was called ‘a diary.’ It wasn’t Just Another WordPress.com Weblog, it was the story of what it feels like for a girl who becomes First Lady after everybody’s favorite human was assassinated in Texas. While acting as Second Lady, she often traveled with JFK in Jackie O’s place b/c Jackie O was preggers.
She was totally prepared though because she was a total NERD and FIRST LADYSHIP JUNKIE who knew everything about the spot before hanging her first boxy blazer in the closet (like the people who go on Survivor and they already know how to win Survivor ’cause they’ve been watching it since before Elisabeth Hasselbeck became a living breathing Bedbug from Hell).
Lady Bird was a Civil Rights advocate, the first First Lady to hold the Bible during her hubbie’s swearing-in (if I ever become president I would like to be sworn in with one hand on Stephen Dunn: New and Collected Poems sidenote), planted wildflowers all over the country, beautified highways, helped create the Head Start program and was the first First Lady to have her own press secretary and go on her own “whistlestop tour,” whatever that is.
4. Jacqueline Kennedy (35th)
She had style she had flair she was there, and so just like The Nanny, Jackie O became the first lady. Jackie O’s primary focuses included being pregnant, redecorating the white house, making The White House more historic and lovely and then making video tours of it, and looking super foxy.
Most importantly, Jackie O was related to Little Edie and Big Edie of Grey Gardens, and they talked about Jackie A LOT.
Have you seen The House of Yes? Totally weird movie, right? But also awesome.
3. Hillary Clinton (42nd)
I mean — DUH x500. I turn this over to my BFF Haviland Stillwell, who is REALLY into Hillary For REAL:
“Hmm…well I do love the hillary. She’s smart. She and Bill worked together during his presidency. They were a team. She worked extremely hard to get healthcare reform passed, and even though it didn’t, her plan paved the way for universal healthcare. She dealt gracefully with the hideous, ridiculous personal insults and scandals that were sadly brought into her marriage and Bill’s administration. Powerhouse human being, great example for all of us on overcoming drama and staying professional, keeping calm and carrying on.”
Also in this photograph they remind me of my parents:
Also she supports gay rights and Planned Parenthood and this happened:
2. Eleanor Roosevelt (32nd)
Eleanor Roosevelt was queer as a three-dollar bill, which is why she’s pictured on the three-dollar bill, which is so rare that some might say it’s non-existent. That’s how that expression came about. I know! You totally didn’t expect to become so educated about history today, and now here you are, learning shit on your day off! Ellie had an affair with a lady-reporter Lorena Hickok and wore a ring from her during FDR’s swearing-in ceremony, like in the Indigo Girls song.
FDR was sick with polio for a lot of his presidency so she did a lot of the talking and communicating and traveling and stuff, like Carmen Sandiego, and also wrote a weekly newspaper column which, if it existed today, would probably be on Autostraddle. Eleanor Roosevelt was “very busy” as a first lady and was a go-to gal for the African-American community w/r/t Civil Rights issues.
Also, although I initially credited Cosmo magazine with this life-changing piece of advice, Eleanor Roosevelt was actually the one who said “do one thing every day that scares you.”
1. Michelle Obama (44th)
Sorry, but the thing about Michelle Obama is that she is really, really, really, REALLY, really really good looking. She’s seriously the hottest thing to step into the White House since Jackie O, she has serious sartorial elegance. Furthermore, she’s advocated for things I care about like poverty awareness, the importance of organic food, arts education, supporting military families, helping working women balance career and family, encouraging national service and promoting healthy eating and physical activity for the little ones.
Also, she’s tall and smart.
Here I’ve made a Michelle Obama collage for you:
Before you go! It takes funding to keep this publication by and for queer women and trans people of all genders running every day. We will never put our site behind a paywall because we know how important it is to keep Autostraddle free. But that means we rely on the support of our A+ Members. Still, 99.9% of our readers are not members. A+ membership starts at just $4/month. If you’re able to, will you join A+ and keep Autostraddle here and working for everyone?