Obama told the crowd of 6,000 that no one person is meant to save the day when it comes to fixing this country’s hostile racial climate.
“Barack’s presidency didn’t fix racism. We need to stop looking for a savior,” Obama said.
“All of us here in the room are the answer to our own problems. It is not finding the one right person that can save us from ourselves. It’s us.”
The race conversation was just the tip of the iceberg for Obama. The mother of two told the crowd that change truly happens when we become shook.
“So many of us have gotten ourselves at the table, but we’re still too grateful to be at the table to really shake it up,” she said.
“I think if we want our daughters to dream bigger than we did, then we have more work to do,” Obama said.
“Because of them, we can’t give up,” Obama said.
Her concerns about race also led to her airing out her dismay on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 loss in the Presidential election and the lack of backing from women.
“Sorry, in light of this last election, I’m concerned about us as women and how we think about ourselves and each other and what’s really going on. I think more about what is going on in our heads where we let that happen, you know? When the most qualified person running was a woman, and look what we did instead.”
“We’re still at that stage where we’re trying to figure out what it means to be women,” Obama said.
Ellis Ross and Obama had an easy-going conversation, full of laughter and insight. The summit was designed to bring together the meeting of the minds with women activists, creatives, entrepreneurs and celebrities talking about how to improve the lives of women.
The Obama administration’s White House Council on Women and Girls co-hosted the first summit in 2016.
On Being Momma Michelle
When it comes to being mom, Obama said she takes a page from her own mother’s playbook—she can put on the “mom face” in no time flat.
“You have to get that mom face right, like, ‘Oh, did that happen? Tell me more’,” Michelle said, to laughter from the audience.
“Trying not to react so you get the good information. I tried to tell Sasha and Malia, ‘Do not go to other 14-year-olds for information, ’cause all you all are dumb. Talk to me.’ It’s like, ‘All of you are dumb. You know nothing. Love you!’ So, let’s just talk about it. Don’t ask Olivia what she thinks about sex. She doesn’t know!”