Any politician will admit that image is everything. They want to reach the people and come across as a trustworthy and upstanding person, capable of running a country. US President Obama has already been caught in a couple of pictures, which could have given his opponents something to get their teeth in to. So what a surprise to see him posing in a three-way selfie at Nelson Mandela’s funeral!
During the funeral service of the iconic South African, Obama posed along with the British and Danish Prime Ministers for a selfie, the action being captured by an AFP photographer.
What you may also notice is the dignified manner in which Michelle Obama doesn’t take part in the photograph.
It’s worth mentioning that this wasn’t the type of funeral we’re all familiar with. Rather than a sombre affair, it was a four-hour stadium-sized memorial to commemerate the life and work of Nelson Mandela, with a riot of dancing and singing.
Looking at some of the other shots taken of the event, we see that other leaders were also taking photos of themselves, some with celebrities, like Bush and Bono for example. Maybe Danish PM Helle Thorning-Schmidt was the first one to pull out her smartphone, breaking the feeling that everyone had to be solemn for the occasion.
Without knowing the context of the actions it’s difficult to judge what was going through the minds of these leaders. Perhaps they just wanted to capture a memory of this iconic event.
Either way, the world was watching and each person will judge the action based on their own personal interpretation of the circumstances.
What do you think?
[Image via Mashable]