Portrait of Abraham Lincoln in 1865/iStockphoto

Last week a super PAC supporting the election of Mitt Romney was outed for planning to resurrect fodder around Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the controversial Chicago pastor who became a talking point during the 2008 presidential election, as a means of defeating President Obama. This isn't surprising but the group's salacious manifesto got tongues wagging around Washington, including New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow.

There was one description of the president that truly seized me:

“The metrosexual black Abe Lincoln has emerged as a hyper-partisan, hyper-liberal, elitist politician with more than a bit of the trimmer in him.”

This sentence is just so deliciously ridiculous, insulting and incendiary — perfect Republican fodder.

Let's dissect it, shall we? Scalpel!

First, there is the word metrosexual. It is usually defined as a man keenly interested in grooming and preening. Despite the sexual root, the term isn't rooted in sexuality. In its truest sense, President Obama of mom jeans infamy — as he told the “Today Show” in 2009, “I'm a little frumpy” — is far less metrosexual than Mitt Romney of the perfect hair, copper tan and Gap skinny jeans.


But this term is rarely appropriately applied. On the contrary, it's often delivered with a snicker to question sexuality and feminize the subject, and femininity in a misogynistic culture is the greatest of sins. Metrosexual has become a roundabout homophobic taunt.

Read Charles M. Blow's entire op-ed at the New York Times.

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