In a very candid speech, Michelle Obama revealed how deeply she was hurt by the racist and sexist vitriol she experienced during her eight years in the White House. The former first lady admitted to a packed crowd that while enduring the hateful bigotry, “the shards that cut me deepest were the ones that intended to cut.” As reported by The Denver Post, Obama made clear at the Women’s Foundation of Denver’s 30th Anniversary event at the Pepsi Center – the same location where Barack Obama accepted the nomination for president of the United States in 2008 – her regret that, “there are still people who won’t see me for what I am because of my skin color.”
The former FLOTUS said it was important to remind others they are accountable for their language and actions. “Women, we endure those cuts in so many ways that we don’t even notice we’re cut,” she acknowledged.
Rising above the seemingly daily onslaught of bigotry and ugliness is part of what charmed so many to the first lady. Michelle Obama was a trailblazer who maintained poise and positivity, which was famously displayed in her 2016 Democratic National Convention speech in declaring, “When they go low, we go high.”
This note of empowerment was very much present in Denver, when she encouraged Americans not to give up on their nation despite the current polarizing political climate. A strong word of reassurance also went out to young women, “Do not despair in your teenage years, even if you’re bullied. The best is yet to come. I’m living my best years in my 50’s”
Although she has not confirmed her intentions on pursuing elected office, we will likely see much more of this remarkable woman, including a scheduled White House memoir through Penguin Random House.