It’s safe to say that many of us have been struggling since everyone’s favourite coupleleft the White House in January. Despite your political opinions on Trump versus Obama, I think we can all agree that the Obama’s just did the whole marriage thingright. I mean, Barack took husband goals to the next level when he teared up thanking Michelle in his farewell address, and don’t even get me started on the time he was pictured being a typical “Instagram Husband”.
While Michelle was certainly a source of unwavering support for her husband during his eight year stint as President, she quickly distinguished herself as more than just the First Lady of the United States. Acting as a role model to women everywhere; Michelle juggled her official duties with grace and dexterity amidst her humanitarian efforts, and commitment to upholding and pushing for the advancement of women’s rights. However, the nation’s first African-American First Lady has recently spoken out about the racist attacks that she endured during her time at the White House. Speaking to a crowd of 8,500 people at the Women’s Foundation of Colorado’s 30th anniversary celebration, Michelle Obama opened up about what it was really like to be the first black woman to be the First Lady of The United States. While the host spent a considerable amount of time praising Michelle for her achievements over the past eight years, the historic First Lady wasn’t afraid to touch on the more uncomfortable aspects of being in such a role. Namely the personal attacks that she repeatedly had to brave, many of which were racist in nature. In the Obama’s biggest public appearance since the 2016 election, Michelle asserted, the shards that cut me the deepest were the ones that intended to cut. She continued, saying: knowing that after eight years of working really hard for this country, there are still people who wont see me for what I am because of my skin colour. Michelle appeared relaxed and confident throughout the armchair conversation, remaining adamant that women shouldn’t hide when they are hurt, as it lets the attackers win. Speaking about the broader struggles that women face on a day-to-day basis, Michelle stated, “women, we endure those cuts in so many ways that we dont even notice were cut […]We are living with small tiny cuts, and we are bleeding every single day.” Turning to face the audience once more, she added, “and were still getting up.” Michelle was the victim of numerous racial slurs while her husband was in office. After Donald Trump’s shock win at the 2016 presidential election, a West Virginia official was fired after publishing a post where she welcomed Melania Trump as First Lady and referred to Michelle an “ape in heels”. The licensed lawyer was also told that she has a “gorilla face” by the mayor of Airway Heights in Washington. More frequently, however, Michelle has been accused of being “strikingly ungracious”, that is, less “classy” than her white counterparts in the role of First Lady. Whilst it’s disheartening to see that such an accomplished woman is being judged by her skin colour in 2017, Michelle’s courage will certainly help reignite dialogues about how women of colour are treated in positions of authority. If you can’t get enough of the Obama’s, why not take a look atwhat they’ve been up to since they left the White House.
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