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Michelle Obama opened up about the racism she endured as first lady. It's heartbreaking.

“The shards that cut me the deepest were the ones that intended to cut."

Michelle Obama opened up about the racism she endured as first lady. It's heartbreaking.
Photo by Kevin Dietsch - Pool/Getty Images.

History will remember Michelle Obama as a bold, resilient, and glass-ceiling-shattering pioneer in the White House. But behind closed doors, Obama silently wrestled with painful, unique hurdles literally no one else on Earth has experienced: being a black first lady of America.

During a candid discussion at the Women's Foundation of Colorado's (WFCO) 30th anniversary fundraiser on July 25, Obama opened up about the eight years of racist attacks she endured as first lady.

When WFCO President and CEO Lauren Casteel asked Obama about which falling glass shard from the ceiling she shattered hurt the most, the former first lady replied that it was the targeted comments — rhetoric referring to her as an "ape" and discussing her body — that were the toughest to shrug off, the Denver Post reported.



“The shards that cut me the deepest were the ones that intended to cut,” Obama said.

“Knowing that after eight years of working really hard for this country, there are still people who won’t see me for what I am because of my skin color.”


Photo by Jason Bahr/Getty Images for The Women's Foundation of Colorado.

While Obama earned relatively high approval ratings among Americans as a whole, she still had to tread through a seemingly unending onslaught of racist dog whistles and overtly bigoted attacks in her eight years as first lady.

There was that eyebrow-raising New Yorker cover depicting her with an Afro and machine gun, the racist (transphobic, misogynistic) comparison to Melania Trump, and the time shortly after taking office that a top Google Images search result for "Michelle Obama" was an image altered so she resembled a monkey.

But the bigotry, however daunting, never kept her from fighting onward.

“I want to live in a world that cares for its women,” Obama said at the fundraiser. “I hope that we can create a world where women are safe. At the core, I want girls to feel safety as they move about the world.”

Obama may no longer be America's first lady, but it's reassuring to know she's still going high — even when they go low.

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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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via Pexels

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"More than half of LGBT adults (54.6%) identify as bisexual. About a quarter (24.5%) say they are gay, with 11.7% identifying as lesbian and 11.3% as transgender. An additional 3.3% volunteer another non-heterosexual preference or term to describe their sexual orientation, such as queer or same-gender-loving," the poll says.

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Courtesy of Creative Commons
True

After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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There are many, many things that change in a household after children arrive. The number of toys and bright-colored items strewn about the house make it look like a clown moved in.

Parents soon give up any chance of watching a TV show they enjoy until after the children go to bed.

The refrigerator becomes jam-packed with juice boxes, go-gurts, and large frozen bags of chicken nuggets.

There's also a strange disappearing act that happens.

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It's amazing to consider just how quickly the world has changed over the past 11 months. If you were to have told someone in February 2020 that the entire country would be on some form of lockdown, nearly everyone would be wearing a mask, and half a million people were going to die due to a virus, no one would have believed you.

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