Sunday, June 7, 2009

Beauty, the good life, and, on the other hand, politics

In the late spring of 2009, a little less than five months into the Obama administration, a pretty young New Yorker named Cheyenne Cherry got her MySpace picture into the tabloids after she broke into a former friend's apartment, vandalized and burglarized it, and then threw the friend's kitten into the oven and burned her to death. Earlier, she had gotten a boyfriend to steal a woman's dog at pistol-point, then shown up at the woman's home with the dog to demand a reward. There were also two other convictions for crimes of violence.

On her MySpace page, Ms. Cherry lists her marital status as divorced and her age as 17. She adds: "I would like 2 meet a cool person out going must have a swag i dont like cocky niggas must get money because i miss young fly and flashy."

As of June 7, the page was embellished with two graphics and a video, all drawn from one of the paradigms of the Gangsta aesthetic, Al Pacino's 1983 film Scarface. From the page's wallpaper, making the words on the page almost illegible, Pacino glowers out at the viewer, holding a fistful of $100 bills. Pacino's face is rendered in black and white, but the money is green. That, as it says on the one-dollar bill, is the Novus ordo seclorum -- at least for those who still live by an order imposed on them in a time of slavery.

And yet Rush Limbaugh says of President Obama, "I want him to fail."


Addendum, June 8: Ms. Cherry's MySpace page is no longer online, but here's a screenshot taken on June 7.