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Michelle Obama Starts Barbecuegate

In her cloying attempt to charm Charlotte, NC, which was selected to host to Democratic National Convention, Mrs. Obama in announcing the choice jotted down every cliche about the South – and about cities in general – she could think of. Except that one of her apparently uninformed, under-researched compliments, by the city’s own admission, doesn’t apply.

Charlotte does not have great barbecue.

Here’s what she wrote in her announcement, which was emailed to members of Organizing to America, the email list compiled during the campaign of Obama’s grass roots shock troops.

Charlotte is a city marked by its southern charm, warm hospitality, and an ‘up by the bootstraps’ mentality that has propelled the city forward as one of the fastest-growing in the South. Vibrant, diverse, and full of opportunity, the Queen City is home to innovative, hardworking folks with big hearts and open minds. And of course, great barbecue.

And here’s how an editor of the Charlotte Observer responded.

Huh?!?! We appreciate all the compliments, and they’re all spot-on until that last one. We like Spoon’s, Mac’s and Bubba’s just fine, but everybody knows to get the best stuff, you gotta drive north to Lexington.

In a separate piece by the Associated Press that appeared in the Observer, a local grandmaster of North Carolina Barbecue said Charlotte had checkmated itself some time ago.

One expert, John Shelton Reed, explained it in stark terms. He is a retired University of North Carolina professor and the co-author of “Holy Smoke: The Big Book of North Carolina Barbecue.”

“Complete the sentence: As a barbecue town, Charlotte is one, not what it used to be; two, like Minneapolis for gumbo; three, good enough for Yankees; four, not far from Shelby,” he said, referring to a barbecue center about an hour west of Charlotte.

Ouch. In North Carolina, this is serious stuff.

While listing things she figured were probably true, Mrs. Obama neglected to mention that as Charlotte residents embrace you with their warm southern hospitality and charm, you must be careful to make sure they’re not fishing around in your back pocket for your wallet. According to, Charlotte is the 14th most dangerous city in the United States to live in.

But, whatever. I guess that still qualifies as “vibrant.”

11 Responses to Michelle Obama Starts Barbecuegate

  1. There is a lot of “buyer’s remorse” here in North Carolina concerning President Obama. I guess after visiting Asheville(our most liberal city) they figured the rest of the state is similar. Wrong. They would be advised not too wander too much east of Charlotte. I can’t wait for them to meet the Nascar crowd.

  2. Let’s just consider the whole thing first, MrsO makes the announcement and not the Chairman of the Dems and no one thinks that’s strange. MrsO makes reference to when SHE was introduced at the last Dem Convention and how wonderful it was. The b-b-q remark was just so stupid and condescending that calling her out for it is counter-productive.

    The message here is that this is Obama’s re-nomination convention and there’s no point in anyone else making a political try. MrsO has placed herself right in the middle of everything and it’s time for the MSM to remove their velvet gloves. Her intrusion into areas outside her position are outrageous and dangerous.

    This morning, at the National Prayer Breakfast, the Prez offered a offensive prayer that his daughter’s skirts will not get any shorter. So gauche, so trashy……

  3. Once more the research was not done and FLOTUS ended up with Uncle Bob’s Old Time “Lick it Off Yer Hands” Smoked BBQ Sauce all over her face and no wetnap.

    MEMO TO MRS OBAMA: Stick to what you know: flying junkets on the taxpayer dime to far away places and wearing $2,500 designer logo’s to homeless shelters.

        • The White House has stated that during the Bar-B-Que feast, it is best to avoid both the meat-stable items, the liquified “BBQ” sauce as well as all sides (transfats) and soft drinks served. The White House advises that the plastic utensils issued are non-biodegradeable (as are the napkins). Democratic activists are asked to stop consuming proteins, carbohydrates and fats while in Charlotte, NC.

  4. Charlotte is about as much a ‘Southern’ city as Miami. But if you never left Chicago until your mid forties, I guess you wouldn’t know that.