The Duchess of Sussex gave a keynote speech for Girl’s Up virtual leadership summit on Tuesday.
Meghan spoke about the challenges of advocacy and got candid about working in unity. She said that people depend on them more than they depend on people. “In the halls and corridors and places of power — from lawmakers to world leaders to executives — all of those people, they depend more on you than you will ever depend on them. They know this,” she said.
Meghan explained that all of them are setting the tone for equitable humanity. ‘Not figuratively. Literally,’ she said. The Duchess continues that humanity desperately needs people to push the world forward. She further urged the viewers to “not only frame the debate but to be in charge of the debate on racial justice, on gender, on climate change, on mental health and well-being, on civil engagement, on public service, on so much more.”
Meghan encouraged them further saying they are standing up and demanding to be heard but also demanding to own the conversation. Referring to the lawmakers and leaders and executives she mentioned earlier, she says they will not listen until they have to. She said it is because of status quo is easy to excuse and also hard to break.
Meghan further explained the need for young leaders to keep challenging, and pushing to make them a little uncomfortable. She explains that discomfort will create the conditions to reimagine our standards, our policies and our leaders. It will also help to move toward real representation and meaningful influence over the structures of decision-making and power.
Your voices can and should be much louder
The Duchess further said that the myth about one group losing something if we all become more equal is completely untrue. “Despite what some may say, this reimagining, it’s not a zero-sum game [where] one side wins, one side loses. Not at all,” she said. “It is mutually beneficial and better for everyone.”
Meghan continued that it will take men and women to take us all there. She also said that it will take Black and white people to collectively tackle the inequities and structural problems that they know exist. The Duchess said they are on the precipice of transformation despite the challenges the world is facing today.
She encourages the idea by saying they can accelerate the pace of change. Meghan further said that they don’t have to be satisfied with the current speed of change. She further urges them to use their voices to build each other up and support each other.
Meghan continued giving her inspiring speech by saying there will be negative voices and they can be painfully loud sometimes but they can use their voice to drown out that noise. Markle continued, “But your voices are those of truth and hope. And your voices can and should be much louder.”
The Duchess further explained that the need of new and different voices are urgent. She said, “believing in true equality is not enough.”
Believe in what makes you unique
Meghan said it is going to take more than belief and they would have to work for it everyday. She encouraged speaking out for others and ourselves even if it makes others feel uneasy. Meghan further said that she knows they will use their voices courageously and compassionately. She explains that compassion does not mean they should not feel angry when they see injustice happen. But she urges them to broaden that feeling.
The duchess continued by encouraging girls to “believe in what makes you unique and don’t be afraid to do what you know is right even when it’s not popular, even when it’s never been done before, even if it scares people, and even if it scares you a little.”
Talking about fear, she said it can paralyze them and stop them from being brave. But she challenged them to not underestimate their ability to push through the fear.
“You have, rooted in your convictions, the ability to craft a world that you know is just and kind,” she said. “You’re gut will tell you what’s right and wrong; what’s fair and what’s unfair. The hardest part — it was the hardest part for me — is to chase your convictions with action.”
Meghan concluded her speech with a shoutout to her husband Prince Harry and to her baby boy, Archie. She said they will all be cheering them while they continue to march, advocate and lead their way forward.
A source revealed before her speech the reason behind the Duchess being so passionate about advocating for women. Meghan thinks the young women and girls have incredible power and have already proven themselves to be leaders beyond their age and years. According to Meghan, “They are a generation that is challenging norms, enacting real-world change, and leading global movements.”
The source also noted that “what the duchess is saying about reimagining the status quo reflects what so many young women across the world are already doing.”
Also Read : News Highlights From July 2020