How Barack Obama said THANK YOU to the First LadyBy Women's Agenda | Jan 11, 17 02:57 PM
"You took on a role you didn’t ask for and made it your own with grace and grit and style and good humour."
Barack Obama has delivered his final speech as President of the United States, calling on Americans to get out and make an individual contribution to democracy, offering a roundup of his legacy, and thanking those who supported him in the role.
In particular, he reserved his most emotional 'thank yous' for his wife and the First Lady, Michelle Obama, as well as his two girls who've grown into young women during their time in the White House, Malia and Sasha.
"Michelle, for the past twenty-five years, you’ve been not only my wife and mother of my children, but my best friend," he said.
"You took on a role you didn’t ask for and made it your own with grace and grit and style and good humor. You made the White House a place that belongs to everybody. And a new generation sets its sights higher because it has you as a role model. You’ve made me proud. You’ve made the country proud."
"Malia and Sasha, under the strangest of circumstances, you have become two amazing young women, smart and beautiful, but more importantly, kind and thoughtful and full of passion."
Obama urged citizens to get out and get organising to help bring about the change they want. He suggested Americans aim to meet in real life, those whom they argue with on social media.
"I am asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about change - but in yours," he said.
"Democracy can buckle when we give in to fear. So just as we, as citizens, must remain vigilant against external aggression, we must guard against a weakening of the values that make us who we are."
Earlier this week, Michelle Obama delivered her final speech as First Lady, urging young people to get empowered.
"So don't be afraid. You hear me, young people? Don't be afraid. Be focused. Be determined. Be hopeful. Be empowered. Empower yourself with a good education. Then get out there and use that education to build a country worthy of you boundless promise. Lead by example with hope; never fear."
She said the country belonged to everyone, no matter what their background.
"Our glorious diversity, our diversity as the faiths and colors and creeds, that is not a threat to who we are; it makes us who we are; she said. To the young people here, and the young people out there, do not ever let anyone make you feel like you don't matter, or like you don't have a place in our American story, because you do, and you have a right to be exactly who you are."
This post was first published by our friends at Women's Agenda