Racism is not a secret and the First Lady Michelle Obama is not afraid to speak out on the controversial issue. Distributing her commencement address at the historically black college Tuskegee University, Michelle Obama proves that President Obama isn’t the only one who’s adept in public speaking.
The First Lady touched on some important issues regarding the growth of our nation from a channeling racial divides, the importance of being politically aware, the struggles that young educated people have to face and so much more valuable information.
Although she has been receiving some negative backlash from some of the talking points that she made, PYNK girls stand with Mrs. Obama by supporting her positive influence on young women and men and by commending her on the educational enlightenment that she shared with the Tuskegee audience and other listening viewers. Read some of our favorite talking points—courtesy of WhiteHouse.gov—and listen to the full speech below.
Photo Credit(s): BET, Getty Images
When asked what kind of First Lady she would be:
“Back when my husband first started campaigning for President, folks had all sorts of questions of me: What kind of First Lady would I be? What kinds of issues would I take on? Would I be more like Laura Bush, or Hillary Clinton, or Nancy Reagan? And the truth is, those same questions would have been posed to any candidate’s spouse. That’s just the way the process works. But, as potentially the first African American First Lady, I was also the focus of another set of questions and speculations; conversations sometimes rooted in the fears and misperceptions of others. Was I too loud, or too angry, or too emasculating? (Applause.) Or was I too soft, too much of a mom, not enough of a career woman?”
When discussing politics in the younger communities:
“And the first thing we have to do is vote. (Applause.) Hey, no, not just once in a while. Not just when my husband or somebody you like is on the ballot. But in every election at every level, all of the time. (Applause.) Because here is the truth — if you want to have a say in your community, if you truly want the power to control your own destiny, then you’ve got to be involved. You got to be at the table. You’ve got to vote, vote, vote, vote. That’s it; that’s the way we move forward. That’s how we make progress for ourselves and for our country.”
When discussing race and education in the black community:
“Because here’s the thing — the road ahead is not going to be easy. It never is, especially for folks like you and me. Because while we’ve come so far, the truth is that those age-old problems are stubborn and they haven’t fully gone away. So there will be times, just like for those Airmen, when you feel like folks look right past you, or they see just a fraction of who you really are…
…Instead they will make assumptions about who they think you are based on their limited notion of the world. And my husband and I know how frustrating that experience can be. We’ve both felt the sting of those daily slights throughout our entire lives — the folks who crossed the street in fear of their safety; the clerks who kept a close eye on us in all those department stores; the people at formal events who assumed we were the “help” — and those who have questioned our intelligence, our honesty, even our love of this country. ”
Listen to the full speech here…