A Cinematic Politician

Gov. Kristi Noem

Gov. Kristi Noem

Andre Gary-Mack, Opinion Editor

When I think of our current political climate, I often reminisce on my time spent reading the Divergent and Hunger Games series. The female political leaders in both books were strong willed, ambitious and much reaching to attain a greater goal, much like our own South Dakota State University alumna and fearless leader of the great state of South Dakota, Kristi Noem.

So what about Noem is similar to that of President Alma Coin of the Hunger Games story, or Jeanine Matthews, leader of the faction Erudite in Divergent?

Well, let’s first start with Noem, a devout Republican who in May of 2010 voted yes on the banning of government issued health coverage, which includes abortion. Yes, a heavy topic, especially in today’s political climate.

While some would argue that we do not have the right to tell women what to do with their bodies, she indeed believes otherwise. Jeanine Matthews displayed such behavior when hunting Divergents. For those not familiar with the term from the movie, in a nutshell it meant people who do not conform to societal constructs.

While the topic of abortion never rears its head in the movie or books, the thought process between how people should be compliant with government standards does have a strong resemblance between the fictional character of Matthews and the rather naive Noem. What is it about female Republicans that feel as though they can speak on behalf of the entire female population?

Anyone who is as much of a Hunger Games fan as myself would remember the blood thirsty ambitions of Alma Coin, who for lack of a better term, sought to “Make Panem Great Again.” It seems as though that is what Noem is saying with her quote about remembering the founding fathers’ ideals or we will lose our freedom, paraphrased from the actual quote stated in July 2011 and found in ontheissues.org.

Are you trying to make South Dakota better? Because from the seat of a millennial college student with some life experience under his belt, or, I don’t know, the Midwestern fresh-out-of-high-school academic who cares about the issues and this country, you are only in it for self gain, trying to advance your career politically.

And we get it, being a woman in power has a level of seduction that men are all too familiar with. It has become the real mistress of our government. But will Noem see the light and redirect her gaze to issues that have a major effect on South Dakota, or will she, like our current administration, forget about what matters and think only of herself while leaving her constituents in the dust? Only time will tell.