Thursday 23 January 2020

Women better leaders than the 'usual old men' - Obama

Feminist: Barack Obama said world would be better if women ran it
Feminist: Barack Obama said world would be better if women ran it

Mary Oppenheim

Barack Obama has said women are "indisputably better" than men and many global problems stem from men of older generations clinging on to power.

The former US president, who has repeatedly spoken about being a feminist, said living standards would substantially improve if women were in charge of every country in the world.

Mr Obama (58), who left the White House in 2017, discussed how the world would look if it was ruled by women at a talk in Singapore.

He said: "Now women, I just want you to know, you are not perfect, but what I can say pretty indisputably is that you are better than us [men].

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"I'm absolutely confident that for two years if every nation on Earth was run by women, you would see a significant improvement across the board on just about everything... living standards and outcomes."

Asked whether he would contemplate becoming a political leader again, he argued leaders must retreat when they have been in power for a long time.

He said: "If you look at the world and look at the problems, it's usually old people, usually old men, not getting out of the way.

"It is important for political leaders to try and remind themselves that you are there to do a job, but you are not there for life, you are not there to prop up your own sense of self-importance on your own power."

Mr Obama emphasised the importance of gender equality when in the White House, and was a keen proponent of women's reproductive rights.

He wrote an essay for 'Glamour' magazine in 2016 about the meaning of feminism and society's obligation to make sure women and men are given equal opportunities.​

The ex-president and former first lady Michelle Obama have established a foundation which mentors young leaders across the world.

He has been writing a memoir, expected to be released next year. Michelle's book 'Becoming' is one of the most popular memoirs in history, selling more than 11 million copies. (© Independent News Service)

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