106 years ago, in the year 1910, there were laws that allowed for Black people to be punished for using the wrong restroom or water fountain. Slavery had just been abolished less than 50 years prior, but America–especially the South–was far from desegregated, and a long way from unified on the racial front. To put it in perspective, in 2016, the nation still has to constantly be reminded that #BlackLivesMatter, and in the wake of the tragic deaths of Trayvon Martin, Freddie Gray, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and more, it’s clear that though laws have changed, the fight against racism is far from over.
The woman in the above video clip knows the aforementioned quite well, because the 106-year-old Virginia McLaurin has lived through it. McLaurin filed a petition two years ago, stating her case as to why she should be allowed to meet Barack and Michelle Obama, and last week her wish was granted. POTUS and FLOTUS gave the elderly gem a warm welcome into The White House, and even took some dancing lessons from the exuberant McLaurin, who appeared to be near tears as she held the hands of both Obamas and told them how in awe she was at having a Black president with a Black wife. McLaurin has seen things that neither Barack nor Michelle were alive to witness, and as Michelle tells her how she’s “made our day,” it’s clear they know that.