Regardless of political affiliations or nationality, everyone loves Michelle Obama. The First Lady of the past eight years has done so much more for the whole world than is expected of her and she did it all while being charming and hilarious. Seriously, she engages in political topics, is a feminist icon and has done amazing things for America’s youth, yet still has time to drive around singing Stevie Wonder with James Corden and dance with Jimmy Fallon. What can’t this woman do?
Well, Michelle is back at it again with the fabulousness in her latest interview with Variety. FLOTUS talked to the magazine about her status as a popular media icon and what that means to her. She then went on to talk about what makes her successful in getting her message out through the media and what needs to be done to continue the progressive work she’s started.
If laughter is the best medicine, humour is that spoon full of sugar you wash it down with. Michelle says that rather than take a totally serious approach to her job, she uses playful and entertaining methods to get her message across.
“I’ve never been afraid to be a little silly, and you can engage people that way. My view is, first you get them to laugh, then you get them to listen. So I’m always game for a good joke, and I’m not so formal in this role.” Did you realize that while you were watching Michelle and James rock out with Missy Elliot, you were also learning about her Let Girls Learn initiative? She’s promoting access to girls’ education while singing Beyonce. Impossible to top.
“Well, [people] are not reading the op-ed pieces in the major newspapers. They’re not watching Sunday morning news talk shows. They’re doing what most people are doing: They are watching T.V.,” she said of her unorthodox First-Lady-ing methods.
As much as she talked about her love of television and other popular medias, she also had to express her disappointment in an industry that doesn’t actually represent the population.
“For so many people, television and movies may be the only way they understand people who aren’t like them. And when I come across many little black girls who come up to me over the course of this seven and a half years with tears in their eyes, and they say: ‘Thank you for being a role model for me. I don’t see educated black women on TV, and the fact that you’re first lady validates who I am…'”
“It becomes very important for the world to see different images of each other, so that, again, we can develop empathy and understanding,” Michelle lays it all out, “The only way that millions of people get to know other folks and the way they live… is through the power of television and movies.”
It’s a weighty calling, but it’s one the media needs to respond to. Michelle Obama wants more diverse and positive representation, and that’s what she (and the world) should get.
How much are we going to miss the Obamas?