Former first lady Michelle Obama detailed her experiences with racism while her husband Barack Obama was president of the United States.
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I just wanted to check in with you all because a lot of you have been checking in on me after hearing this week’s podcast. First things first—I’m doing just fine. There’s no reason to worry about me. Like I said in that conversation with @Michele__Norris, I’m thinking about the folks out there risking themselves for the rest of us—the doctors and nurses and essential workers of all kinds. I’m thinking about the teachers and students and parents who are just trying to figure out school for the fall. I’m thinking about the people out there protesting and organizing for a little more justice in our country. The idea that what this country is going through shouldn’t have any effect on us—that we all should just feel OK all the time—that just doesn’t feel real to me. So I hope you all are allowing yourselves to feel whatever it is you’re feeling. I hope you’re listening to yourselves and taking a moment to reflect on everything that’s coming at us, and what you might be able to do about it. And to all of you who’ve reached out—thank you. I hope you’re also reaching out to all those you’re closest with, not just with a text, but maybe with a call or a videochat. Don’t be afraid to offer them a shoulder to lean on, or to ask for one yourself. Love you all. ????: Adam Garber @garbr
“What the white community doesn’t understand about being a person of color in this nation is that there are daily slights,” Michelle said. “In our workplaces, where people talk over you, or people don’t even see you.” (RELATED: Michelle Obama Blames Trump, Lockdowns For Her ‘Low-Grade Depression’)
Michelle went on to talk about what she experienced with long-time friend Denielle Pemberton-Heard as the pair took their daughters to get ice cream after a soccer game.
“We were stopping to get ice cream and I had told the secret service to stand back, because we were trying to be normal, trying to go in,” Michelle said in the podcast. “There was a line, and… when I’m just a Black woman, I notice that white people don’t even see me. They’re not even looking at me.”
“So I’m standing there with two little Black girls, another Black female adult, they’re in soccer uniforms, and a white woman cuts right in front of us to order,” she continued. “Like, she didn’t even see us. The girl behind the counter almost took her order. And I had to stand up ’cause I know Denielle was like ‘Well, I’m not gonna cause a scene with Michelle Obama.’ So I stepped up and I said, ‘Excuse me? You don’t see us four people standing right here? You just jumped in line?'”
Michelle claimed the woman “didn’t apologize” to her and “never looked [her] in [the] eye.”
The former first lady said she had experienced situations like this multiple times despite her newfound fame across the world.