Michelle Obama Keeps it Real with Tuskegee Graduates
First lady Michelle Obama gives a thumbs up after walking out on stage just before deliveringthe commencement address at Tuskegee University, Saturday, May 9, 2015, in Tuskegee, Ala. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Michelle Obama Keeps it Real with Tuskegee Graduates

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Michelle Obama opened up to students at Tuskegee University about her experiences being the first Black First Lady and she offered nuggets of wisdom to help these college graduates start their post-graduation lives with an extra dose of motivation! Check out the video and read the transcript below.

“You will follow alums like many of your parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles — leaders like Robert Robinson Taylor, a groundbreaking architect and administrator here who was recently honored on a postage stamp. (Applause.) You will follow heroes like Dr. Boynton Robinson — (applause) — who survived the billy clubs and the tear gas of Bloody Sunday in Selma. The story of Tuskegee is full of stories like theirs — men and women who came to this city, seized their own futures, and wound up shaping the arc of history for African Americans and all Americans.

And I’d like to begin today by reflecting on that history — starting back at the time when the Army chose Tuskegee as the site of its airfield and flight school for black pilots. (Applause.)

Back then, black soldiers faced all kinds of obstacles. There were the so-called scientific studies that said that black men’s brains were smaller than white men’s. Official Army reports stated that black soldiers were “childlike,” “shiftless,” “unmoral and untruthful,” and as one quote stated, “if fed, loyal and compliant.” Read more here.

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