Last week, Michelle Obama took to the stage in New Hampshire as part of her support on Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. But rather than her usual “GO HILARY, GO!” oriented speech, she threw a curve ball and left the audience, as well as the rest of the country, shouting “YAS, GIRL,” as she responded to the recently leaked audio recordings of Donald Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women. Her speech is racking up praise from political powerhouses across the country; conservative talk show host Glenn Beck has described it as “the most effective political speech I have heard since Ronald Reagan.”
We all know Michelle Obama is an angel, sent down from heaven to keep all the little mad people in the White House sane; she is the people’s beacon of hope and is made up of everything good in the world. She is a wonderful mother, a loyal and loving wife, one hell of a First Lady, an intelligent businesswoman, and we all wish she could be our girl friend/mom/sister all at once (wine night with Michelle must be spectacular). The best thing about her is that she is so real while remaining poised and approachable, even when discussing sexual assault and defending women’s rights.
She describes last week as one of “profound contrast,” with massive highs celebrating the International Day of the Girl, and Let Girls Learn, the last event she will host as First Lady in the White House, and then suddenly being brought so low by the timely leak the following day. “I thought it would be important to remind these girls how important and precious they are. I wanted them to understand that the measure of any society is how it treats its women and girls,” only to be hit once again by misogyny within the presidential campaign. “And now here I am on a campaign trail where we have consistently been hearing hurtful, hateful language about women. Language that has been painful for so many of us – not just as women – but as parents trying to protect our children and raise them to be caring, respectful adults. And as citizens who think our nations leaders should meet basic standards of human decency.”
This is not about one gender. This is about our country coming together to address the blatant abuse that women suffer through every day, “This is disgraceful. It is intolerable. And it doesn’t matter what party you belong to – Democrat, Republican, and Independent – no woman deserves to be treated this way, none of us deserves this kind of abuse. And I know this is a campaign, but this isn’t about politics, it’s about basic human decency. It’s about right and wrong.”
The way that Michelle Obama takes this issue, makes it relatable, and verbalizes it in a way that is easy to digest for anyone who may watch the speech in full (if you haven’t yet please do, you will not regret it) is magical. We had full goose bumps here watching as she so eloquently slayed the feminist game, “For so long, America has been a model for countries across the globe, pushing them to educate their girls, insisting that they give more rights to their women, but if we have a president that routinely degrades women, who brags about sexually assaulting women, then how can we maintain our moral authority in the world? How can we continue to be a beacon of freedom and justice and human dignity?” And then without fail, comes in full force with that no bullshit attitude, “And we can’t just sit around wringing our hands, no, we need to recover from our shock and depression, and do what women have always done in this country. We need you to roll up your sleeves, we need to get to work, because remember this, when they go low, we go high. Yes we do.”
This is important. This was not "locker room banter" or "men being men," no, this is the kind of behavior that needs to be addressed and dealt with on a national level in order to shed light on gender equality and the feminist fight that cannot afford to go unnoticed anymore.
This is something that you will want to watch over and over (and over and over) again. Thank you, Michelle Obama, for taking an impactful, powerful speech, and delivering it better than anyone could ever dream. We support you and all women everywhere. If only she were on the ballot this November.
Watch the full video below!
Check back next week for more news from the STRITA team! xx
Photo via The Guardian Online