black women

Michelle Obama: “The blood of Africa runs through my veins”

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michelleMichelle Obama passionately addressed a crowd of prospective African businessmen and businesswomen at a Washington summit this Wednesday. The event comprised of many students who had come to America to attend school. The summit included a speech from President Barack Obama, as well as advice from several business experts, but the First Lady’s words of encouragement inspired many attendees.

Michelle explained to the crowd that she acknowledges her close ties to the African continent:

“The roots of my family tree are in Africa,” said Obama. “My husband’s father was born and raised in Kenya. Members of our extended family still live there. I have had the pleasure of traveling to Africa many times over the years, including four trips as first lady, and I have brought my mother and my daughters along whenever I can.”

Addressing the ambitious audience as her ‘brothers’ and ‘sisters,’ Obama informed them that her close ties to the continent is one reason why she cares so “deeply” about the plight of Africans. “The blood of Africa runs through my veins, and I care deeply,” Obama said.

The subject of women’s rights was also a major theme in Obama’s address. “I imagine that for some of you here today, getting your degree might have meant disobeying or disappointing your families,” the FLOTUS said.

She added that traditional “attitudes” and “beliefs” of educated women are holding the gender back in not only Africa, but also in the United States. She mentioned that those negative views lead to fewer women in leadership positions, as well as a gap between women’s income in comparison to men’s.

Obama reminded the men in the crowd that it is also their responsibility to help their fellow woman to excel in society.

“So, to all the men, my brothas here today, I have a simple message; we need you to shake things up,” implored Obama.

“I am who I am today because of the people in my family, particularly the men in my family, who valued me and invested in me from the day I was born…and as I grew up, the men who raised me set a high bar for the type of men I’d allow into my life— which is why I went on to marry a man who had the good sense to fall in love with a woman who was his equal, to treat me as such— a man who supports and reveres me, and who supports and reveres our daughters as well.”