Not everyone wants to grow up to be President. Talk about a stressful job, right?!? No, some of us want to grow up to be the President’s spouse—a role that requires just as much (if not more) intellectual capital.
Yes, the office of the First Lady is a powerful one, and not one you just waltz into on accident. And while the candidates for the upcoming 2016 presidential election are all spoken for, there are plenty more fish in that politically elite sea.
For those with presidential, nuptial aspirations, First Lady Michelle Obama doled out some wise words at Tuesday’s Glamour-hosted panel, The Power of an Educated Girl, held at the famed Apollo Theater in Harlem. In discussing the value in educating girls around the world (the cause at the heart of the philanthropic event), fellow panelist Charlize Theron issued an affirming statement: “There is nothing sexier than a smart woman.”
“We have been told to live by a certain mold, women—especially women—and it’s time to break it,” Theron said to an audience of teen girls. “It is up to us to do that, to stop waiting for men to do that.”
It was a strong moment, met by applause and screams from the crowd. Until Michelle Obama, America’s First Lady, one-upped her.
“Let’s just be clear,” Michelle Obama said, “you don’t want to be with a boy who’s too stupid to appreciate a smart young lady. I want to encourage all of us as young women, as older women, we have to raise our own bars.”
Dang, good point, Michelle. We should raise our bars. And boys are dumb! But wait. It got better:
“If you have people hanging around you that are bringing you down and not lifting you up, whether that’s your boo our your best friend, you’ve gotta learn how to push these people to the sides,” she continued. “There is no boy at this age that is cute enough or interesting enough to stop you from getting your education.”
And then the big zinger:
“If I had worried about who liked me and who thought I was cute when I was your age,” Michelle said, grinning, “I wouldn’t be married to the President of the United States today.”
The statement was, of course, met by thunderous applause, shrill screams, and a high-five from Charlize Theron. As people in the room and on Twitter noticed, it’s the closest thing to a mic drop as we might expect from America’s first lady.
The lesson to be found in Mobama’s stealthy dating advice jibes well with the purpose of the panel. There’s value in educating girls, regardless of whether or not they want to marry the next President. Don’t dally away on stupid, 12-year-old boys. Boys are dumb. Your time is better spent studying and strategizing for the White House. It certainly worked for Michelle Obama, and it can certainly work for you, too.