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‘I wanted young people to see my journey’: Obama to Rashford on Zoom

Former US president and England footballer discuss activism and inspiring others to create change

Barack Obama and Marcus Rashford have teamed up to encourage young people to shape their own destinies and the societies in which they live. The former US president and the Manchester United and England forward met in a Zoom meeting arranged by Penguin Books, and posted to YouTube on Friday, to discuss the motivations behind their own activism and their eagerness to inspire others to create change.

“The thing I want young people to see is that even in the highest reaches of power, where I’m sitting with world leaders and we’re trying to design a programme to deal with climate change or end a war or address a major world economic crisis, it’s still just humans,” said Obama. “It’s still just people. So often for many young people, particularly young people who are poor or don’t come from well-connected families or young people of colour or women or people of different sexual orientation, so often we feel like outsiders, not sure we belong at the table in making those decisions.

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