The Importance of Appearance

Everyday you wake up, take a shower, eat breakfast, and get dressed. For some they don’t think much about it as it is a daily routine. For some however, the simplicity of what they wear can make break their image in the light of the public eye. For highly elected officials, this can make or break their career and that is why appearance and morality is one of the most important tasks of an elected official.

Have you ever noticed that President Barack Obama typically wears gray or dark blue suits because they connote a sense of trustworthiness and loyalty. Or to be even more crazy, the basic handsomeness of an individual, like Kennedy, can dictate whether or not they will win an election. In 2005, Princeton University conducted an experiment where random subjects looked at two photos of people and chose which one they thought would win the election. Seventy percent of the time the person who had more of a competence look won the election. The question from there was, What does competence look like? And a person who would fit that category is former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. The face is masculine but approachable, a square jaw, high cheekbones, and large eyes.

Another important study is a person’s way of words. Whether you admire or despise them Kennedy, Reagan, Bush, and Obama are excellent at their ability to deliver a speech. “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country” , “Mr. Gorbachev, Tear down this wall” , “I can hear you, the rest of the world can see you, and the people who knocked these buildings will hear all of us soon.” , and “ Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” These are some of the most famous presidential quotes of the past fifty years. Through analyzation, the candidate who can deliver the greatest speech typically wins the nomination. 2004, Kerry vs. Bush was a prime example of that. John Kerry was a man who was just as distinguished as Bush and met all of the requirements for the presidency however, his public speaking skills are that of a rock. With all due respect, the man can’t really speak well. This is again evident in the 2016 presidential race. Trump, you have to admit, speaks to his specific audience and they want to hear the truth that nobody wants to admit. On the other side, Bernie is speaking the truth and is relating to the common man and that is the trend of this race. The people are speaking and saying that they want someone who isn’t a typical run of the mill establishment person.

Ronald Reagan at Berlin, Germnay

Now, the individuals who possess these two magical traits are not only destined for the Oval Office but are also known as the great presidents. Two of the presidents to admire are John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. JFK brought a whole new life and vibrance to the White House and Washington D.C. with his sense of swagger. Ray Bans, Brooks Brothers suit, Omega watch, creased pants, polo sweaters were the image of America. It is another part of the american culture and how we vote. Typically someone who shows an image of coolness and youthfulness and fits the trend at the time can typically win an election. For example, the 1960’s was a very important time period after the great tensions of the 1950’s and the fear of a nuclear disaster occurring, as long as you don’t count the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. The 1960’s was an era that mimicked the miniature golden age of the 1920’s and JFK sent his message of charm and wisdom to the Oval Office with his cabinet being very young and starting his presidency with the quote “Ask not, what your country can do for you. Ask, what you can do for your county” with the intention of uniting all peoples. JFK was a person who left an impact on the world due to the simple way he carried himself.

Kennedy and his swagger

To elaborate a little more on the dress code of a presidential candidate it is important that the individual doesn’t wear clothes with a noticeable logo such as Polo or Lacoste. In the 2016 presidential race the candidates who wore clothes with an iconic logo are no longer in the race. Two major ones would be Marco Rubio and Rand Paul who wore Polo. The reason it hurts them is because an american voter will ask “How are you a person of the middle class when you are wearing a $150.00 shirt?”. Donald Trump never wears logo clothing and that still makes an impact even though everybody knows he is a billionaire. Did you see Obama on his trip to Cuba? Did you notice he was rocking a new pair of shades? Yeah, those shades have a retail price of $490.00 and they are called Oliver Peoples and are worn by celebrities such as Johnny Depp, Robert Downey Jr., Elton John, Kanye West, etc. The reason that they aren’t as big of a deal is that they simply have no logo written on them and they are just simple black sunglasses. The politicians like to have expensive things but are very meticulous on how they wear them.

Obama in Cuba

An important factor that has to do with a person’s decision on a vote is the the name that appears on the college diploma of the candidate. It is typical that the president of the united states has a name such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth, Brown, Columbia, Cornell, and the University of Pennsylvania on their diploma. If you don’t believe it the past four presidents are as followed: Obama (Columbia, Harvard), Bush (Yale, Harvard), Clinton (Yale), H.W. Bush (Yale). These four individuals all have attended an Ivy League school at some point in their life and when people go to vote they think “Oh they have to be smart” due to their diploma. However, under a closer examination there a few tricks as to how they got to an ivy. For example, Obama in high school was a “B” student and didn’t have the grades to get into Columbia however what he did do was attend Occidental College for two years and then transferred as that is much easier to do. Bush was a good old “C” student but he came from a family of money and simply bought his way into Yale. It is similar to the republican frontrunner Donald Trump where he attended Fordham University for two years and then transferred into the University of Pennsylvania to attend the Wharton school of business. This is a major strategy that many politicians do in order to appear a certain way to the people who will vote them into office. Another part of the education of a politician is that they either have a law or business degree so that way it seems that they politician understands how the law works or to understand the economy. There were a lot of decisions that politician made at a young age to make an influence on the nation a few years later.

All in all, we all like to think that we judge our decision based off of an individual’s stance on the environment, economy, foreign policy, etc. however, it has proven through scientific studies that typically base our votes based off appearance. It is very important to note that many presidents appear a certain way and that way is to manipulate you perspective of them. So the next time you watch a presidential debate take note of the color of the person’s suit, tie, and/or dress and see how it makes you feel toward an individual.