Former President Barack Obama's eldest daughter is finding that moving out of the White House doesn't always mean you've moved out of the spotlight. The former first daughter has recently become the target of intense scrutiny and criticism as tabloids cover just about every little thing she does while attending her first year of college. But what exactly did Malia Obama do to have critics in such an uproar? Videos showing the former first daughter exhibiting fairly normal teenage behavior have left people divided.
Days after TMZ posted photos and a video of Malia kissing a boy another video of the former first daughter blowing smoke rings has surfaced online. While the videos have caused some people to criticize Malia for what they felt was "inappropriate" behavior, others have come to the former first daughter's defense, noting her behavior was fairly typical of any teenager.
Earlier this week, celebrity tabloid TMZ shared a video of Malia kissing a boy later identified as her boyfriend, Rory Farquharson, before a football game between Harvard University and Yale. According to TMZ, Malia was later seen smoking a cigarette during tailgate activities prior to the game. Numerous articles delving into Farquharson's background and how the pair might have met quickly followed along with a variety of tweeted criticism on everything from her friends' loyalty to her date's skin color.
On Friday, just four days after Malia had made headlines for a kiss, a video of her blowing smoke rings quickly went viral after being posted — and later deleted — by Barstool Sports. According to the right-wing news outlet the Daily Caller, the video was still making the rounds on Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram despite having been deleted by Barstool Sports. To be clear, it's not known what Malia may have been smoking in the video to produce the smoke for her smoke ring trick.
While some people bemoaned Malia's behavior on Twitter and used the videos as an opportunity to criticize her and her parents, others defended the former first daughter, urging critics to mind their own business. "Malia Obama is minding her own business," Illinois attorney general candidate Erika Harold wrote in a tweet. "Everyone else should do the same." Others questioned the loyalty of Malia's friends, under the assumption the videos had been taken and sold by someone she knew.
As scrutiny and debate over Malia continued, a number of fellow first daughters also spoke out in defense of the young college student. "Malia Obama's private life, as a young woman, a college student, a private citizen, should not be your clickbait," former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton wrote in a tweet posted Friday. "Be better."
Ivanka Trump, current President Donald Trump's eldest daughter, also defended Malia's right to privacy. "Malia Obama should be allowed the same privacy as her school aged peers," Ivanka wrote in a tweet Friday. "She is a young adult and private citizen and should be OFF limits."
Malia began her first year at Harvard University earlier this Fall after taking a gap year following her high school graduation in 2016. During her gap year she traveled to Bolivia and Peru and did an internship with the Weinstein Company. At the time, Bloomberg reported the Obamas said Malia had opted for a gap year in an effort to start her college career without all the distractions having a president for a father can bring.
Yet, while her gap year may have lessened the spotlight having a presidential father in his final term might bring, it certainly hasn't allowed the former first daughter to live in complete privacy.