Former democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has taken the internet by storm this week, for acting like an elected official who is paid by tax-payers to turn up to work and vote on bills.
His lack of designer clothes, or red carpet handshaking, has been positioned as a quirky branding exercise – as social media struggles to understand why he felt no need to show-off during such a pivotal moment in US History.
This comes as the inauguration of President Biden commanded the world’s attention after a horrifying final year of Donald Trump’s reign.
From the catastrophic death toll of the pandemic, to the inflamed racial tensions in the wake of the police murder of George Floyd, right up to the Trump supporters storming the capitol earlier this month – the transition of power from the Republicans to the Democrats has been the most volatile in living memory.
However, all of this was overshadowed by an old man from Vermont who was dressed like most old men in Vermont would dress.
The image of former Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders, an independent senator socially distanced from other inauguration guests with his legs and arms crossed has gone viral – attracting more online attention than the moment Joe Biden finally became President.
Sanders’ decision to not dress like he was nominated for several Oscars for his contribution to a Marvel movie has stood in stark contrast with the other outfits of the day – as a parade of U.S. politicians and celebrities dressed up in designer monochrome outfits, as they patted themselves on the back for saving the world.
American media pundits and night show hosts are today regurgitating every variation of this meme as they find themselves unable to grasp the idea that a member of the elite American political class would want to act like a public servant, and not a Hollywood celebrity.
Unlike the designers that dressed the Clintons, Obamas, Bidens and Bush family – Sanders says his now iconic mittens were knitted for him by a local school teacher in his hometown, and that she is too busy being a single mother for her to bother trying to use this moment to become famous.