Barack Obama Opens Up About His Daughters' Political Activism06/09/2021
Barack Obama is opening up about his daughters’ political activism. In a new interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, the former president of the United States said that while Malia, 22 and Sasha, 19, are much wiser than he was at their age, he still worries about their physical safety when they participate in protests and rallies, like the Black Lives Matter protests they attended in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, last year.
“I always worry about their physical safety; that’s just the nature of fatherhood…But in terms of them having a good sense of what’s right and wrong, and their part and role to play in making the country better, I don’t worry about that,” Obama told Cooper.
The We The People producer said his daughters’ generation is less tolerant of the injustices his generations and others put up with, and instead opt to fight for real change.
“What you and I might have tolerated as ‘That’s sort of how things are,’ their attitude is ‘Why? Let’s change it,'” Obama explained. “That’s among not just my daughters, but it’s among their white friends. There’s this sense of, ‘Of course, it’s not acceptable for a criminal justice system to be tainted by racism. Of course you can’t discriminate against somebody because their sexual orientation.’ There’s things they take for granted that I want them to take for granted.”
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But Malia, Sasha and their peers are more strategic about their activism than generations past, figuring out ways to not only engage the system, but change it.
“They’re not just interested in making noise, they’re interested in what works,” he added.
In conversations with his daughters, Obama told Cooper that they acknowledge some people may go overboard when it comes to “cancel culture,” and ousting anyone with different beliefs than their own.
“We don’t expect everybody to be perfect, we don’t expect everybody to be politically correct all the time,” Obama said. “But we are going to call out institutions or individuals if they are being cruel, if they are discriminating against people. We do want to raise awareness.”
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