Free Melania – From Our Expectations
WASHINGTON — Now, stacked on the Trump tower of petrifying things we have to worry about — war with Iran, war with Mexico, war with Islam, war with koala bears — there is yet another looming disaster.
The East Wing is perilously behind in planning for the Easter Egg Roll. Is the White House dropping the ball — or rather, the ovoid?
As our omnipresent new president hijacked our reality, the first lady vanished, sparking headlines for nary a glimpse in D.C. since the inaugural.
Just as there is a gush of leaks from the resistance in the federal government about President Trump’s erratic and impulsive behavior, there are whispers about Melania’s elusive and sphinx-like behavior.
The Times’s Julie Hirschfeld Davis wrote about the anguish of anonymous D.C. sources who fear the annual egg roll and other “elaborate White House events that are among the heaviest tasks for first ladies” are languishing in the deserted East Wing, as are unanswered requests for White House tours.
时报的朱莉·赫希菲尔德·戴维斯(Julie Hirschfeld Davis)在文章中提及了特区匿名消息人士的困扰，这些人担心的是：就如许多参观白宫的申请尚未得到回复，在被弃之不顾的东翼，每年一度的复活节彩蛋活动以及其他一些“应精心安排的白宫活动”正被搁置——而安排此类活动本该是“第一夫人最繁重的任务之一”。
While Melania plays Rapunzel in her Fifth Avenue tower, Steve Bannon is reveling in his role as the troll under the bridge. Beauty and the Beast.
At least Dick Cheney, another mad scientist who hated multilateral relations and preached hegemony, waited until he had started a bogus war and smashed the globe before he embraced the nickname Darth Vader. Bannon calls himself that while he stirs the pot, noting that “darkness is good” and that Darth and Satan had real power.
另一位憎恨多边关系、宣扬霸权的疯狂科学家迪克·切尼(Dick Cheney)，至少是等到发起了一场虚妄的战争并把地球砸了个稀巴烂以后，才得到了达斯·维德(Darth Vader)这个绰号。而班农一边煽风点火一边以此自称，他说“黑暗很好”，达斯和撒旦都拥有强大的力量。
As the elegant Melania scorns the East Wing, the grungy Bannon reigns in the West Wing, where late into the night he plots his Manichaean schemes to blow up everything with trade wars, real wars and battles against the Islamic “caliphate.” He blithely sits at the center like Jabba the Hutt as the slapdash White House sows strife, chaos and cruelty, putting out executive orders restricting immigration and rolling back financial regulations on Wall Street — a move that will hurt the very blue-collar Americans Trump pledged to protect.
当优雅的梅拉尼娅蔑视白宫东翼的时候，邋遢的班农统治着西翼，他在那里点灯熬油，忙于谋划自己的摩尼教式大计，要以贸易战、真正的战争以及打击伊斯兰“哈里法国”的战斗摧毁一切。他像“赫特人贾巴”(Jabba the Hutt)一样愉快地居中而坐，看着草率的白宫播下争斗、混乱和残酷的种子，发布行政令限制移民并放松对华尔街的金融管制——此举恰恰将让特朗普承诺保护的美国蓝领受到伤害。
I’m more worried about Trump’s presence in the White House than Melania’s absence. Whether or not she intends it, the woman who calls herself “a full-time mom” is making a modern statement about the role of the first lady. She’s saying: I’ll do it on my terms.
“Never since Abigail Adams has a first lady not lived in the White House from Day 1 — if they were alive and well,” said Kate Andersen Brower, author of “First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies.”
“在阿比盖尔·亚当斯(Abigail Adams)之后，还没有哪位第一夫人从第一天开始就不住在白宫——如果她们活得好好的话，”著有《第一女性：美国现代第一夫人的魅力和权势》(First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies)的凯特·安德森·布劳尔(Kate Andersen Brower)说。
Melania may just be enjoying some proper rest in her golden aerie without the distracting light of Donald’s devices as he taps his wee-hour tweets that set the world afire.
The reason it would have been so delicious to see Bill Clinton in the first lady role is that it would have illustrated starkly just how antiquated the white satin music box is. The man who knew every detail of the Irish and Middle East peace processes would not have been expected to simply read books to schoolchildren on trips abroad or deal with flowers for state dinners.
“Bill Clinton would have upended the role and changed all the gender stereotypes,” Brower said. “Melania Trump is going to do something equally interesting by refusing to accept our expectations of what a first lady should be. Her refusal to fulfill this thirst that people have for the first lady role to be held by an ideal wife and mother who is everything to everyone is a really unfair expectation for anyone.
“We do not know if she would call herself a feminist, but in a weird way it’s a strangely feminist thing to do. It’s gutsy not to move there until she’s ready.”
Political wives serve as character witnesses and can soften their husbands’ images. Melania did this for Donald after the Billy Bush scandal, telling Anderson Cooper that Bush had “egged on” her husband and that it was merely “boys’ talk.”
政治人物的妻子扮演着品德证人的角色，而且可以让其丈夫的形象变得柔和。比利·布希(Billy Bush)丑闻爆发以后，梅拉尼娅便为特朗普做了这些，她告诉安德森·库珀(Anderson Cooper)布希“怂恿”了她的丈夫，说这只不过是“男孩间的谈话”。
She could have done more such protective interviews in the insanity of her husband’s first week in office. But she chose not to, a silence that left political insiders speculating whether there were raw feelings from the Billy Bush tape that had not healed. Her opacity, weirdly, has made her a folk hero of the left, which likes to imagine that she is a hostage to her embarrassing husband.
A #FreeMelania meme thrives and Paul Rudnick is conjuring “Melania’s Diary” in The New Yorker, in which she went to the Women’s March incognito and chanted, “Keep your tiny hands off my reproductive rights!” They even wonder if her first-lady project choice, fighting cyberbullies, is a sly slap at her cyberbullying husband.
“#FreeMelania”（解放梅拉尼娅）的米姆呈风生水起之势，保罗·鲁德尼克(Paul Rudnick)在《纽约客》(The New Yorker)杂志虚构的《梅拉尼娅日记》(Melania’s Diary)里说她乔装打扮参加了女性大游行，高呼“别用你的脏手碰我的生育权！”他们甚至怀疑，她计划以第一夫人的身份抵制网络霸凌是不是另有深意，相当于巧妙地给了她那个实施网络霸凌的丈夫一巴掌。
First ladies have also often played critical roles when they thought advisers were overreaching. Nancy Reagan gave chief of staff Donald Regan a push and Laura Bush did the same with Donald Rumsfeld.
第一夫人还常常在她们认为顾问越界的时候发挥至关重要的作用。南希·里根(Nancy Reagan)让幕僚长唐纳德·瑞根(Donald Regan)遭到解职，劳拉·布什(Laura Bush)则对唐纳德·拉姆斯菲尔德(Donald Rumsfeld)做过同样的事情。
Melania has never played that role with Donald. It was Ivanka and Jared who helped purge Corey Lewandowski and Paul Manafort. It seemed like Ivanka was going to assume some of the first lady portfolio, but right now she is too busy saving her brand from her father’s careening debut.
梅拉尼娅在特朗普身边从未扮演过这种角色。帮助清洗考利·莱万多夫斯基(Corey Lewandowski)和保罗·马纳福特(Paul Manafort)的是伊万卡(Ivanka)和贾里德(Jared)。伊万卡原本似乎将承担起第一夫人的部分职责，但她现在太忙了，忙于不让自己的品牌被父亲失控的首演毁掉。
For this administration, there’s a better use for the empty East Wing: Move in the first First Shrink.