Michelle Obama presented her opinion on how parents are contributing to the problem of men feeling “entitled.” The former first lady spoke to an audience during the second day of The Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago and shared her theory on how parenting is inadvertently churning out these types of men.
The Hill reports that Michelle Obama was on stage with poet Elizabeth Alexander on Wednesday to explain how she thinks boys are being brought up differently than girls. Mrs. Obama began by saying, “we love our boys and we raise our girls.” She surmises that the problem with men in society feeling a sense of entitlement and self-righteousness is the strategy to not “hurt” them and raise women to be “strong.”
“We raise them to be strong, and sometimes we take care not to hurt men. And I think we pay for that a little bit,” Michelle Obama said.
Mrs. Obama acknowledged that she doesn’t know what it’s like to bring up boys because she has two daughters; Malia, 19, and Sasha, 16. She didn’t attack parents specifically but said this is a “we thing” because this is seemingly the norm; “pushing girls to be perfect” while basically “nurturing” men. She questions the definition of “strength” when it comes to men. Does it mean respect, responsibility, or compassion? Michelle Obama ponders whether missing something here directly results in men ultimately feeling somewhat entitled, and therefore, having a self-righteous attitude.
Michelle stated that it’s on “all of us” as women and mothers to adjust this way of bringing up boys and girls. She admits to raising Malia and Sasha to be “sturdy” and exist in a strong way. She’s concerned for women in this world because it’s “dangerous” for them.
— The Hill (@thehill) November 1, 2017
What does Mrs. Obama think the answer to preventing the future’s men from feeling entitled? She believes raising children to “be people” in a way that teaches them to be independent, well-meaning, thoughtful, and have compassion will go a long way in improving the entitlement culture.
The topic was addressed by Mrs. Obama after a spate of sexual harassment reports surrounding big Hollywood figures have flooded the news. One of the Obamas’ biggest political donors, Harvey Weinstein, has several stars accusing him of sexual assault and harassment. The Obamas released a statement that they were “disgusted” by the news and further expressed that no man, regardless of wealth or status, should treat women in such a demeaning way.
What do you think of Michelle Obama’s theory about how boys and girls are raised differently? Does she have a point that a lot of work goes into nurturing boys while girls are being taught to do the hard work of being perfect?
[Featured Image by Jason Bahr/Getty Images for The Women’s Foundation of Colorado]