Skoll World Forum 2018 Opening Plenary | Jimmy Carter, Bryan Stevenson, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

Skoll World Forum 2018 Opening Plenary | Jimmy Carter, Bryan Stevenson, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka


(repeated drumbeats) (gentle music) – Once upon a time a boundary was built. They called it a border. A way to control what moves where and how. And some time after continents and bodies started drifting apart. We let the miles separate us. Forgot how to find each other. Forgot that this planet
was once one whole body. That we were once neighboring organs making music that kept the globe moving. And to this day we have a
habit of keeping problems at arm’s length. So that we never have
to wrestle with them. The distance between us is a
rumor we keep passing along and we stay far enough
away to keep talking, to keep the words afloat
so the truth can’t sink in. Truth is. We are all just mustard seeds without enough faith to
move the mountain top we were birthed from. Pieces of shrapnel reminiscing
on the tectonic plates that tore us apart in the first place. Color every one of us a
different shade of searching. Through the shadows of injustice. I am no more a guide than another traveler in front of a microphone,
encouraging us all to keep walking. To stay curious about
the footprints we leave and how the answer is
as simple as candles. There’s a light and our
willingness to be burned, to connect with other
imperfect flashes of humanity. So go with me the distance,
whether you pass ports or borrow sugar, or lend
entire infrastructures. Whether donating money so
the lights don’t go out or donating lights so that
darkness doesn’t swallow a city whole. Go with me the distance
because there are some voices so drained the only
noise the body can muster is a whisper. Let our job be one of listening. Put our ears where our eyes go. Put our mouth where our ears left so that we always see
what someone is saying and never speak without insight. That we be close enough
to hear a pin drop. Bold enough to lend the paper. Fill a notebook in these stories. So go with me the distance. Remember there’s a spark when the circuit is close enough to close. An electricity in proximity. And our willingness to
get uncomfortably close, to be wronged out loud and keep pushing. To grapple our own demons in public. To love the world so
hard we start to remember how close we actually are. (audience cheering) – [Announcer] Ladies and gentlemen. Please welcome Stephan Chambers. – Wow. Let us remember how close we actually are by getting Darius back out
to get your real applause. Darius. (audience cheering) Thank you so much. Thank you. Good afternoon. And Darius thank you so much. Emily Dickinson, who
many of you will know, taught us that if you feel
as if the top of your head has been blown off that’s poetry. Darius that was poetry, thank you so much. – [Darius] Thank you. – Good afternoon. Good afternoon and welcome. Welcome to entrepreneurs
and artists and activists and investors and scholars
and innovators and resistors and new friends and old. Welcome to Oxford. Welcome to the 2018 Skoll World Forum and welcome to proximity. I am very happy to be with you at this, my favorite happening of the year. We’re here because it’s
April, because it’s Oxford and to celebrate your
hard and important work. You make so much that is warm
and humane and inspiring. Thank you. (audience applauding) It’s a truism to say
that a lot has happened since we last met. But it’s true, a lot has happened. And a lot of what’s happened has been, as we academics like
to call it, a bit shit. (audience laughing) And this week. (audience applauding) And this week matters
because it’s a bulwark against all of that. You are a barrier against disinformation, duplicity, destruction. And you matter a great deal. And this year especially I relish a week in which we focus on what to do, not simply on what’s wrong. When those of you who
act positively crowd out those who damage and divide. When ambition is harnessed
for collective purpose. That’s a very good reason to be here in this remarkable place
for this remarkable week. Welcome. We should be ridiculously
proud that this is the biggest Skoll World Forum ever. 1200 of you are testing Oxford’s catering and its umbrella allocation as you work on storytelling,
news, data, democracy, social media, impact, measurement
and so many other things that underpin your hard work. And with the work comes serendipity. New friendships. New partnerships. New ideas. New energy. Our theme this year is
the power of proximity. The mysterious workings of empathy. The multiplier effect of difference. The capacity to be close
to those we’re apart from. The nearness imperative. The absolute necessity of
getting close to people and of doing so through head and heart. Don’t worry, I’m not gonna make you hug. That comes later. You are problem solvers
and you know that problems are not solved in isolation. Nor from above, nor from outside. You need to be close to the problem and close to each other. And you know that human distance isn’t only physical distance. It’s also distance in power,
in hierarchy, in equality, in politics, in information, in access. And you know that proximity isn’t always about connectedness. Closeness is imaginative sympathy. Closeness is speaking with not for. Closeness is partnership. And there are of course many many of you who make partnership possible for us in real and practical ways. The MasterCard Foundation
helps bring the next generation of social entrepreneurs. Bob Annibale of Citi has been
the most loyal of supporters over the years and I can
even see him right there. (audience applauding) And somewhere in the room
there are 50 Skoll World Forum Fellows supported by Johnston & Johnston. I can’t see them but if
they can see me hello. (audience applauding) So I wish you a wonderful
productive week of proximity. New partnerships, new friendships. All the things that the forum
does that are astonishing. And now it’s my very great
pleasure to introduce someone who really embraces the power of proximity and who understands at a profound level just how much isolation
depletes closeness. An extraordinary lawyer,
an extraordinary activist. The founder of the Equal
Justice Initiative. And most recently and
I think spectacularly, the founder of the Legacy Museum. From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration. Bryan Stevenson. Bryan. (audience cheering and applauding) – Thank you. Thank you very much. What a thrill to be back here at Skoll. It’s wonderful to be
with you this afternoon and I’m delighted that the
organizers have asked us to talk about the power of
proximity because I am persuaded that at this time in our world where there’s so much
conflict and division, where there’s so much
suffering and inequality it is critical that we
begin thinking about what it will take for us
to create more justice. To change the world. I come from a country that
now has the highest rate of incarceration in the world. We have 5% of the world’s population, 25% of the world’s incarcerated. We’re putting women and children and people in jails and
prisons indiscriminately. Today in the United States one in three black male babies born is
expected to go to jail or prison. There is despair. In the communities where I
work, I go into communities where I talk to 13 year
old children who tell me they don’t believe
they’re going to be free by the time they’re 21 and
that despair and these problems are everywhere in the world. And I don’t wanna talk about the problems I wanna talk about the solutions and I am persuaded that the
first thing we have to do if we’re going to create
a more just society is we’ve got to understand
the need to get proximate. It is in proximity to the poor,
the excluded, the neglected that we understand things
that we cannot understand from a distance. Many of us have been taught that if there’s a bad part of town you need to stay away
from the bad part of town. Many of us have been taught that there are parts of the globe where there’s conflict and suffering you should stay far away. Today I’m going to argue that
all of us need to find ways to get closer to the marginalized. The disabled, the disfavored. The excluded, the incarcerated. Because in proximity there is this power that we begin to understand. Our politicians fail us too often because they’re so
distant from the problems. They don’t hear the things you hear when you’re close to suffering. They don’t see the things you see when you’re close to inequality. There is power in proximity. I learned about proximity
from my grandmother. I grew up in a family where
my grandmother was the classic African American matriarch. She was tough, she was strong,
she was also loving and kind. My grandmother was the end of
every argument in our family. She was also the start of a
lot of arguments in our family and when I was a little boy my
grandmother would always have these tactics and when she
would see me as a child she’d come up to me and
she’d give me these hugs and she’d squeeze me so tightly I thought she was trying to hurt me. And I’d see my grandmother an hour later. My grandmother would look
at me and she’d say Bryan do you still feel me hugging you. And if I said no she
would jump on me again. And by the time I was 10 my
grandmother had taught me every time I would see her
the first thing I would say is Mamma I always feel you hugging me and she’d smile the smile
and I didn’t appreciate what she was teaching me
until I was much older. She lived into her 90s,
she worked as a domestic her whole life. And she developed cancer
and she broke her hip and she was dying, I went
to see her on her deathbed and I was pouring my heart out because she meant the world to me. And I was just saying
everything, holding her hand, her eyes were closed. I didn’t think she could hear me. And it was time for me to leave
and when I left I stood up and when I was about to walk away my grandmother squeezed my
hand and she opened her eyes and the last thing she said to me, she said Bryan do you
still feel me hugging you. And then she said I’m always
going to be hugging you. And I can’t tell you how powerful that is. There have been times in my
life when I’ve felt pushed and overwhelmed and struggled
but I feel this presence and all of us have the
capacity to get close to people who are suffering, close to
people who have fallen down and if we can’t do anything else we can wrap our arms around
them but we can’t do it if we’re not proximate. There is power in proximity. We’ll learn things, we’ll see things that we have to understand if
we want to change the world. I’m the product of someone’s
choice to get proximate. I grew up in a community where
black children couldn’t go to the public schools. Started my education in a colored school. And then lawyers came into our community and they made them open
up the public schools and because they got proximate
to poor black kids like me I’m standing here talking to you today. I got to go to high school. I got to go to college. I was a philosophy major in college. Nobody in my family had gone to college. I was trying to figure
out how to stay in school and I started looking
into graduate programs and I didn’t know that in
the United States at least if you want to do graduate
work in history or English or political science to get
admitted to graduate school you have to know something
about history, English or political science. I was very intimated by
that so I kept looking and to be honest that’s
how I found law school. (laughing) It was very clear to me you
don’t need to know anything to go to law school. But when I got to law
school I was disillusioned until I went to death row
and I found condemned people literally dying for legal assistance and it was in proximity to the condemned that I began to understand
the importance of witness and suffering and struggling
but more than that I began to understand the
importance of justice. Of equality. Of the rule of law. I invite you all to get
proximate to the poor, the excluded. There is something waiting for you there and you will learn more, you
will get more than you give. There is power in proximity
but we won’t change the world just by getting proximate. The second thing I’m
persuaded we have to do is that we have to change the narratives underneath the policy issues. The problems that we
constantly talk about. Underneath the policy
debate there’s a narrative. In the United States we
have mass incarceration because we declared this
misguided war on drugs. The reason why we declared
this misguided war on drugs has to do with a narrative. It’s what I call the
politics of fear and anger. We had politicians that were
preaching fear and anger. They wanted us afraid and angry
and when we allow ourselves to be governed by fear and
anger we tolerate things that we shouldn’t tolerate. We accept things we shouldn’t accept. And all over the planet you
can see how oppression thrives and if you ask the oppressor
why they do what they do they’ll give you a
narrative of fear and anger and so we have to change that
narrative of fear and anger. We have to resist those narratives that push us away from one
another, that don’t allow us to recognize the humanity of one another. Those narratives are the threat, changing the narrative is key. I’ve learned this from
working with clients. I’ve spent time representing
people wrongly convicted. Anthony Ray Hinton spent
30 years on death row and when we began to work with one another we realized they just
didn’t value his humanity. That narrative had to change. We’re trying to do something
about race and racial bias in our country. In the United States we’re not free, we’re burdened by a history
of racial inequality. I don’t think we’re a free society. I think we have a history
of racial inequality that’s created a kind of smog in the air. We are a post-genocide society that hasn’t recognized that identity. We did terrible things to native people when Europeans came to the continent and instead of acknowledging that violence we said no those native
people are different, they’re savages. We created this narrative
of racial difference and then we got into the era of slavery and I don’t think the great
evil of American slavery was involuntary servitude or forced labor. I think the true evil of American slavery was this narrative of racial difference this ideology of white
supremacy that we created to justify and enslave. We said black people are
different than white people. They can’t do this, they can’t do that. They’re not fully human and that narrative of racial difference,
that was the true evil. In our country we passed the
13th Amendment to end slavery and it talks about ending
involuntary servitude and forced labor but it
doesn’t talk about ending this narrative of racial
difference and because of that I don’t think slavery
ended in America in 1865, I think it just evolved. It turned into decades of
terrorism and violence. We pulled black people out of their homes. We murdered them, we lynched them. We maimed them. There is this legacy of racial terror and when you talk to
African Americans today they tell you that they get angry when they hear somebody talking about how we’re dealing with domestic terrorism for the first time in our
nation’s history after 9/11. The demographic geography
of our nation was shaped by this terror and then we
had this effort to overcome segregation and even there
the narrative didn’t change the way it needs to and today
we still live in a country where black and brown people
are presumed dangerous and guilty and that burden weighs on us and the narrative has to change. That’s why we’re building this museum. That’s why we’re building
a monument, a memorial to help us reflect on this history. I believe that narratives
change when we commit ourselves to truth and reconciliation
and we haven’t told the truth about what we’ve done
to some of the societies around the world. The ways in which we’ve exploited people. Taken advantage of systems. The structural poverty. The systems that create
inequality and injustice. We’ve got to tell the truth and that will allow us
to change the narrative. But even changing the
narrative won’t be enough. The third thing I’m
persuaded we have to do, we have to stay hopeful. These are times when it’s
easy to become hopeless about what’s possible and you have to fight
against hopelessness. I believe that hopelessness
is the enemy of justice and justice prevails where
hopelessness persists. And I believe this community and communities across the world that want more justice
have to commit themselves to believing things we haven’t seen. Hopefulness is believing
something you haven’t seen. Hope is what will get you to stand up when other people say sit down. Hope is what will get you to speak when other people say be quiet. Your hope is your super power
and if we protect our hope we protect our capacity to be
a witness against these things that are coming at us, then
we understand what it means to truly change the world. We gotta get proximate. We’ve gotta change narratives. We’ve gotta stay hopeful but the fourth and final
thing we’re gonna have to do if we really want to create more justice, we’re gonna have to be willing
to do uncomfortable things. I hate talking about this
one but it’s necessary. We cannot change the world. We cannot make a difference
simply by being proximate, simply by changing narratives,
simply by staying hopeful. The fourth and final thing
we’ve got to be willing to do. We’ve got to be willing to do inconvenient and uncomfortable things. The world changes, justices rises, when good people are willing
to do the inconvenient and uncomfortable. And it’s hard, it’s very hard. (audience applauding) It’s hard because we’re
human and as humans we’re biologically and
psychologically programmed to do what’s comfortable, we like comfort. And I’ve tried to
research this one, I have. I’ve looked for some examples
where justice prevailed, where equality triumphed,
where oppression was ended and nobody had to do anything inconvenient and uncomfortable. I can’t find any examples of that! No it only happens when good
people are willing to do uncomfortable things
and don’t get me wrong I’m not against comfort. That’s not what I’m saying. I gave a talk in Mississippi. The people met me at the airport. They said oh Mr Stevenson
we know all about you. We know what kind of work you do, we know what kind of lawyer you are. And then they said Mr Stevenson
we’re having our conference at the luxurious DoubleTree Hotel. They said we decided that
you would not wanna stay at the luxurious DoubleTree Hotel. They said we’ve asked one
of the farmers to put you up at the barn. I said what is wrong with you? I said of course I wanna
stay at the luxurious DoubleTree Hotel. I like those chocolate chip cookies just like everybody else. No what I’m talking
about, I said sometimes you have to position
yourself to be a witness. I represent condemned people. I represent people on death row and I’ve had the privilege
of winning a lot of cases but I’ve also been in that painful place where we could not succeed. A few years ago I represented a man who was facing execution in 30 days. He was intellectually disabled. I got involved in his case very late and I went to the trial court and I said you can’t execute this man. He suffers from intellectual disability. And the courts have banned
the execution of people with intellectual disability
but this court said no it’s too late. I said no it’s not too late. I went to the state
court, they said too late. The appeals court said too late. The federal court said too late. Every court I went to said too late. And in too many places in the world we seem more committed to
finality than fairness. And on the day of the execution
I was waiting for a ruling from the United States Supreme Court, I was pacing in my office
and finally the phone rang. It was the Clerk of Court at the United States Supreme Court. The court told me, the Clerk
told me that my motion for stay had been considered and reviewed but the judgment of the
court was that our motion was due to be denied. Too late. I then had to get on the phone and do the hardest thing I do in my work. I got this man on this
phone and I said to him, I said I’m so sorry but I
can’t stop this execution. And then the man did the
thing that I dread the most in my work. He started to cry. And through his tears
he just began to sob. And the next thing I knew the man was on the other end of the phone just sobbing. He said to me, he said Mr
Stevenson please don’t hang up there’s something important
I wanna say to you, I said of course. And then this man tried
to say something to me but in addition to being
intellectually disabled he had another challenge. When he got nervous, when he got anxious, when he got overwhelmed he
had a speech impediment. And he would begin to
stutter and all of a sudden this man couldn’t get out a single word and he kept trying to say something. He kept trying to talk but he
couldn’t get out a single word and he kept trying and he kept trying and the more he tried and
failed the more he was ripping my heart apart. And before I knew it I was standing there holding the phone and tears
were running down my face. And the man kept trying
and the man kept trying and it was so overwhelming,
so uncomfortable that my mind wandered. I remembered when I was about nine or 10 going to church one Sunday. My mom had taken me to church,
I was there with my friends, we were talking and I
remembered on the night of the scheduled execution
meeting this little boy and he was standing there at the church and he wasn’t saying
anything and I asked him what’s your name, where are you from. And I remembered that night how that little boy tried
to answer my question but he also had a very
severe speech impediment and he began to stutter
and then I remembered that I did something really ignorant. When that little boy tried to
answer my question in church all those years ago I
remembered that I laughed at that little boy. My mom came over and she gave me this look I’d never seen before
and she pulled me aside. She said Bryan don’t you
ever laugh at somebody because they can’t get
their words out right. I tried to apologize,
my mom wasn’t having it. She said now you go over there and you tell that little boy you’re sorry. I said okay Mom. And I took a step to
go see this little boy, my mom grabbed me by
the arm, she said wait. After you tell that
little boy you’re sorry I want you to hug that little boy. I rolled my eyes a little
bit, I said okay Mom and then my mom grabbed me by
the arm again, she said wait. After you hug that little boy I want you tell that
little boy you love him. I said Mom I can’t go over
there and tell that little boy I love and she gave me
that look again so I did. I went over to this little
boy, I said look man I’m really sorry. And then I lunged at
this child and gave him a little boy man hug
and then I tried to say to this little boy as
insincerely as I possibly could, I said look man, you
know, well I don’t know, well you know, I don’t
know well, I love you. And what I’d forgotten until
the night of this execution is how that little boy hugged me back and then I remembered how he
whispered flawlessly in my ear, he said I love you too. And I was thinking about
that while this client tried to get his words out and finally my client got his words out, he said Mr Stevenson I wanna
thank you for representing me. He said I wanna thank
you for fighting for me. And the last thing that man said to me, he said Mr Stevenson I love
you for trying to save my life. They pulled him away, they
strapped him to a gurney and they executed him. I hung up the phone, I said
I can’t do this anymore. I’ve gotten too close, it’s too much, it’s too uncomfortable. I kept thinking about how broken he was. The question in my mind was why do we wanna kill all the
broken people on this planet. What is it about us that
when we see brokenness we get angry, we wanna
hurt it, we wanna crush it and then I realized that all of my clients are broken people. I represent the broken. I work in a system that is
broken by fear and anger and that night I said I
can’t do this anymore. It’s just too much and I said
I’m not gonna do this anymore. And I sat down and I began reflecting on whether I’d gotten too proximate. And it was in that moment of reflection that I realized something
I’d never realized before. That was the night I
realized why I do what I do and it shocked me. And what I realized is
that I don’t do what I do because I’ve been trained as a lawyer. I don’t do what I do because
somebody has to do it. I don’t do what I do because
it’s about human rights. I don’t do what I do because
if I don’t do it no one will. What I realized that night,
that I’d never realized before, is that I do what I do
because I’m broken too. And I tell you that because
when you get proximate you see suffering. There will be times when you cry, where you’ll feel overwhelmed. There will be nicks, there will be cuts, there will be scars but
I’m here to tell you as a survivor of brokenness
that it’s in brokenness that we begin to understand the way justice is supposed to work. It’s the broken among us
that can teach us the way compassion can heal. It’s the broken that
appreciate the power of mercy. It is the broken places in the world where justice can grow
and redemption can be seen and we can see real change on our planet. I’m not afraid of being broken. It’s in brokenness that we
understand the power of humanity. That we respect one another’s rights. That we get closer. So in brokenness I wanna tell
you that we should not fear getting proximate. We should not fear changing narratives. We should not fear
doing the hopeful things that are necessary and as we
do them we’ll learn things. I’ve learned that each of
us is more than the worst than we’ve ever done. I believe that for every human being. I think if someone tells a
lie they’re not just a liar. I think if someone takes something that doesn’t belong to them
they’re not just a thief. I think even if you kill someone
you’re not just a killer. And justice requires that we
know the other things you are. In proximity we see these
things that we can’t see from a distance. What I’ve seen is that the
opposite of poverty isn’t wealth. I don’t believe that. We talk too much about money sometimes. I believe that the opposite
of poverty is justice and when we do justice we
deconstruct the conditions that give rise to structural poverty and finally what I’ve come to
believe is that our character, our commitment to justice
has to be reflected, not at how we treat the
powerful and the rich and the privileged. It’s gonna be reflected
in how we treat the poor, the excluded, the incarcerated. I’ll end with this. I was giving a talk in a church and an old man came into the church. He was sitting in a wheelchair. And he was staring at me
the whole time I was talking with this stern angry look on his face. I couldn’t figure out why’s
he looking at me so sternly. And when I finished my
talk people came up, they were very nice and appropriate but that older black man in the wheelchair was just sitting there. And then he wheeled himself to the front and when he got in front
of me he put his hand up. He said do you know what you’re doing? And I just stood there. And then he asked me
again, he said do you know what you’re doing. And I stepped back and
I mumbled something. And then he asked me one last time. He said do you know what you’re doing. And then this older black man looked at me he said I’m gonna tell
you what you’re doing. He said you’re beating
the drum for justice. You keep beating the drum for justice. And I was so moved. I was also really relieved ’cause I just didn’t know what was. (audience laughing) And then this man grabbed me by my jacket and he pulled me into his wheelchair. He said come here, come here, come here I’m gonna show you something. And this older man turned his head, he said you see the scar I
have behind my right ear. He said I got that scar in
Greene County, Alabama 1963 trying to register people to vote. He turned his head, he said
you see this cut I have down here at the bottom of my neck. I got that cut in Mississippi trying to register people to vote. He turned his head, he
said you see this bruise. That’s my dark spot, I got
it in Birmingham, Alabama in 1965 trying to register people to vote. Then he looked at me and he said I’m gonna tell you something young man. He said people look at me, they think I’m some old
man siting in a wheelchair covered with cuts and bruises and scars. He said I’m gonna tell you something. He said these are not my cuts. He said they’re not my bruises. He said these are not my scars. He said these are my medals of honor. I believe we honor what it
means to do human rights work, what it means to be a
member of this community, what it means to stand up for justice when we allow ourselves
to get close enough, even though we may get cut and nicked. When we stay hopeful,
when we change narratives and when we do uncomfortable things to create a more just world I’m excited that we would take time from our lives to come to a place like
this to talk about it. To focus on it. To think about it but more than that I’m excited that when we
leave we can find new ways to understand the power of
proximity and change the world. Thank you all very very much. (audience applauding) – [Announcer] Ladies and gentlemen. Please welcome to the
stage Skoll Foundation CEO and president Sally Osberg. (audience applauding) – Was that incredible? Bryan I can’t, you found the
words, you gave us the hug, you challenged us to do
the uncomfortable things. I can’t think of a better way
to have gotten us fired up for everything that lies ahead. Thank you, thank you, thank you. (audience applauding) And speaking of proximity,
of people close to us, it is my very great
pleasure to introduce you this afternoon to the new director of the Skoll Center for
Social Entrepreneurship here at the Said Business
School, Peter Drobac. As many of you know
Peter comes to this role with a deep understanding of what it takes to drive real social change. He played a key role in
the transformation of Rwanda’s health system which has delivered unprecedented gains in
population health and prosperity as a physician, as executive director of Partners in Health Rwanda and as co-founder and
first executive director of that country’s pioneering university of global health equity. Peter’s research and
academic interests include implementation science
and the development of high-performing health systems. When you get him for a drink later ask him what implementation science is. I have no idea. In short though we couldn’t
have found anyone better to lead the Skoll Center in
its mission to accelerate the impact of social entrepreneurship. Peter it’s a pleasure to welcome you. (audience applauding) – Thank you, thank you. Thank you, thank you Sally. We are living in strange times. I don’t know about you but
I find myself experiencing these existential mood swings between optimism and despair. Optimism because this is the best time in the history of the world to be alive. More people in more places
are living longer, safer, healthier lives than ever before. Thanks to inspired leaders
like President Carter, ancient and neglected
scourges like Guinea worm are nearly history. The outrage that I felt
as a young medical student watching kids condemned to die of AIDS simply because they were
poor was replaced by awe when just a few years later
the world was moved to wake up and reject that status quo. After that anything seemed possible. Then despair. Despair because it feels
like we’re sliding backwards. Many of our leaders seem
hapless if not virulent. Globalization and technology,
the things that were supposed to bring us closer
and lift everyone up, have instead exposed
our social fault lines and driven us further apart. But most days I land
on the side of optimism and I draw that optimism from Rwanda, a place where I lived for a dozen years and a country that this
week is commemorating the 1994 genocide that took
a million innocent lives in just a hundred days. Most people know that dark tale but fewer know what happened next. As the world diverted its
gaze in indifference and shame the people of Rwanda picked themselves up and refused to accept their fate. They found the courage to forgive and the audacity to
imagine a better future and then they got to work and built it. Rwanda became a nation
of social entrepreneurs. Rwanda taught me that the next great idea can come from anyone, anywhere but only when there’s
an enabling environment that allows different voices to be heard. Rwanda taught me that equity and justice are two sides of the same coin and that making equity our north star compels us to think differently. Rather than say no we ask how. Rwanda taught me that
social change requires equal doses of imagination and humility and that large scale
change requires solidarity and collective action. These are the principles that drive me and I hope will guide our
work at the Skoll Center. I’m humbled to follow in the legacy of the late Pamela Hartigan. Loved and admired by many here today. (audience applauding) I’m honored to work with
our Dean Peter Tufano who embodies our school’s motto. Lead With Purpose. And today I’m particularly
excited to announce the newest member of our
team at the Skoll Center. Just appointed as an associate fellow here at Oxford Said Business School. The one and only Sally Osberg. (audience applauding) Come and stand here, come and stand here. Come stand with me. So the other day I asked Sally how she wanted to use this new platform to advance our collective work
and you know what she said. Peter, I think it’s
time to do some damage. (laughing) And with that I think we have
our new mission statement. Thank you very much. (audience applauding) – [Sally] That was great, that was great. – My name is Jimmy Carter and
I’m running for president. (gentle music) Peace and freedom, human rights and the alleviation of suffering. The equality of opportunity on Earth giving of every human being
a modicum of self-respect and human dignity and
hope that their future would be better. Those are the things that I
believe are completely possible based on the principles
that we’ve established and have continued to
pursue at the Carter Center. – [Man] Jimmy Carter. The 39th President of the United States has become one of the
world’s most prolific and respected humanitarians
whose work for the Carter Center seems him traveling the globe, fostering peace, fighting disease and promoting democracy. – And you so believe in human rights which obviously is
inclusive of women’s rights that you left the Southern
Baptist Convention? – Yes I did. They had a convention and
ordained several things that were contrary to my
basic beliefs in Christ. One of them was that
women are inferior to men. I have become increasingly concerned about what’s going on in Palestine. There hasn’t been a
single day of peace talks in the Holy Land in six years. I think that’s a tragedy. Yet not many people know it or care. I care. People living in a remote village absolutely poverty-stricken
and afflicted with a preventable disease are
just as intelligent as I am. And just as hard working as I am. And just as ambitious as I am. We can choose to alleviate suffering. We can choose to work together for peace. We can make these changes. And we must. (audience applauding) – Seven times over the last
decade from this podium Jeff Skoll has presented a special award from the Skoll Foundation
to someone who could rightly be called a global treasure. You all know the expression wild horses couldn’t keep him away. Well the wild horses this
year have kept him away. The wild horses of serious
pain and a major spinal surgery just last week. So that’s what’s kept our
beloved chairman and founder from making this award to
his magnificent friend. I do though know what he’d
want me to say about him. But first a bit about the
Skoll Global Treasure Award. Our prior honorees are
an illustrious group. Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Mohammed
Younis, Malala Yousafzai, Graca Machel, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and last year Bono. We don’t have formal
criteria for this award. Young, old, rock stars,
politicians, priests. We just know when there’s
someone in our midst whose integrity is inspiring
and whose record of achievement in addressing the world’s
most pressing problems is nothing less than stunning. Jimmy Carter, 39th President
of the United States, is that someone. The quintessential man for all seasons. His life’s work extends from
farming to nuclear psychics to politics played out on local,
national and global stages. Over the entire arc of his
life he has never equivocated when it comes to human rights
and humanitarian action. He’s also a man who engages
as easily and effectively with the ordinary folks who queue up for his Sunday School lessons at the Maranatha Baptist
Church in Plains, Georgia as he does with international leaders across every sector and geography. As president he normalized
US diplomatic relations with China and launched
the process engaging Egypt, Israel and the United States which led to the Camp David Accords and
the historic 1979 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel. Let me underscore that this
treaty endures to this day despite all the upheaval in
the region since its signing. (audience applauding) Yeah, pretty amazing. Upon leaving the White House the president and his wife Rosalynn
founded the Carter Center to resolve conflict, promote
democracy, protect human rights and combat disease. Some of you will remember President Carter came to the Skoll World
Forum 10 years ago. He told us about one of those
battles against Guinea worm, a particularly vicious illness. When the Carter Center began its work more than 3 1/2 million people suffered from Guinea worm. But leadership and
perseverance has paid off. A week ago authorities announced
that the last mile march is now down to the final inch. Guinea worm is within
five cases, all in Chad, of being eradicated from
the face of the Earth. (audience applauding) President Carter is a founding elder, is one of 12 independent global leaders convened by Nelson Mandela in 2007 who continue to provide moral
leadership for the world. And for his life’s work he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. On behalf of Jeff Skoll and the foundation’s Board of Directors we are so very honored to present the 2018 Skoll Global Treasure
Award to Jimmy Carter. (audience applauding) – Thank you. Well first of all I wanna thank Sally and we just made a video for
Jeff wishing him well and hoping he’ll be here from now on. And all of the social
entrepreneurs who are here who have taken advantage
of their brilliant minds and their entrepreneurial spirit to develop programs that
are beneficial for others that were designed that way. I notice the proximity as a
main thrust of this session and in a modern day world we
are pretty well proximate. It was worth a trip here
just to be able to listen to Bryan speak and I watched
him on 60 Minutes Sunday night where he pointed out the
counties in our country, that had been the host people for, the assassination you
might say, the lynching of 4300 people. I hated to hear it but my
county was one of them. We had three people in our
county that were lynched. Well anyway proximity
is very important to us and in a modern day society
we are all proximate and we can use this
proximity for advantage with our instant contact with each other. I think about a fourth of
the people on Earth now are part of Facebook
and all the other ways that we can communicate,
we’re close to one another. We’ll have instant, almost
instant transportation. I woke up yesterday
morning in my home town and tomorrow morning I’ll
wake up in Georgia again so that’s a good trip. Thanks to Jeff’s airplane by the way. (laughing) Ordinarily I’d travel by Delta but this is a special occasion
which is not atypical of what Jeff and them have done for me. This is a time of soberness though because for the first time in
history we are now facing the possibility of the end
of all human beings on Earth and all living creatures on Earth. When I was elected President
of the United States one of the first things I did
was to get a briefing from our military experts. The generals and admirals and so forth. And I was informed that under
my direct personal control, as a single human being, I had more than 15,000 nuclear
weapons available to me. And I knew that Brezhnev
and Russia and Soviet Union had the same amount. And China and France and Great
Britain had weapons as well. And I was told that if
we reached a point of incompatibility with each other, particularly between the
United States of America and the Soviet Union and any
exchange of nuclear weaponry would result in radioactive fallout and the explosive power and particularly the
darkening of the skies so the sunlight couldn’t reach
the Earth for several weeks, that it would result in the
end of all life as we know it on Earth with the possible
exception of microbes. With the realization of
that and also the damage that can be done to the
Earth from global warming a few people on high
ground and in fertile areas can possibly survive. But it would be of great
damage to our population as well on Earth. These kind of things are very sobering and it brings me and many others to wonder what can we do about it. I think one of the things we can do is to take advantage of our proximity, of our knowledge of one another to decide whether we can
live possibly in peace with people on Earth with
whom we disagree or not. That is a basic question for us to face. I had to face it when I
was in the White House. All the other presidents since Eisenhower have had to face that same question and it’s one that
President Trump faces now. With the altercation
possible between North Korea and the United States
that could precipitate an exchange of nuclear weapons. We have the opportunity
though to learn from the basic principles of human rights, from a deep religious faith
either way Christians or Jews or Muslims or Buddhists or whatever. We can extract the finest
aspects of our religion and apply it in our own personal lives and in the lives of those
whom we support in elections to resolve that question favorably and learn to live with one another but also to care for one another, to be concerned about one another and to try to help one another
instead of being willing to go to war with each other. That is a question that we face now. So getting along with each other and treating each other as equals is one of the hardest things
for us to do on Earth. It’s very difficult for any person, including me and you, not
to feel at least superior to some other people. We have that inclination as human beings to be superior at least
in some aspect of life. Maybe because of the color of our skin. We face that in the Deep
South where I grew up and where the lynchings occurred. Or between men and women. I happen to be a Christian and
the bible that I study says that in the eyes of God
there is no difference between Gentiles and Jews. There’s no difference
between slaves and masters. There’s no difference
between men and women. Period. That is difficult for us to accept. The Court of Senate recently has kind of changed its position. At the end of the last
century I was asked to make two major speeches, one in Taiwan and the other one in Oslo. The question I was asked to address was what is the greatest challenge that we, that human beings face,
in the coming Millennium. At that time I said it was
the disparity in income within countries between the rich and poor and the favorable treatment
that rich people get from governments whom they can influence. And, on the other hand, between rich countries and poor countries. But we’ve changed our mind. I have. And we now feel that the
greatest disparity on Earth, the greatest challenge
that human beings face is the discrimination
against women and girls. (audience applauding) This morning I covered that
subject, encouraged by Mabel who used to be head of
an elder’s organization and she extracted more
information out of me than I intended to provide which she always has been able to do. But anyway I’m gonna be quite brief. One of the things I pointed
out this morning was that the unknown aspect
of gender prejudice is the loss of life of females. For instance in the country of India for every 100 women alive
today there are 112 men. So something happened
to the other 12 girls. And China the disparity is 118 to 100. So 18% you might say of Chinese women have been executed
primarily by their parents. And the same thing in India. In one region of India the World Health Organization tells us that the ratio is 100 to 154. It’s estimated that 160 million women, because of prejudice against females, are no longer living on
Earth that ought to be alive. Well those things are of deep concern and we are struggling, we
and the Skoll Foundation and many others, to provide
equality of treatment and respect between men and women. The overall concept is for
us to do that with everyone. I would say that down through the ages human beings have prevailed
because of our superior minds compared to other animals. There was a time when there
was an equal struggle. In fact many animals had an advantage because of their strength
and their rapidity and their fangs and so forth towards us. Well we changed that. Human beings changed it with
the development of weapons. With spears, bows and arrows and then guns human beings became superior to animals. What’s the next step in the
evolution of human beings? We’ve faced the challenge
that I’ve already outlined and it is can we ever learn with proximity constantly increasing
now and in the future to be able to live peacefully
without military conflict between us and people with whom we have an honest difference of agreement. Or who look differently. Or who worship differently. That’s the big question we face. It’s a very sobering thing to realize that what we need to fall back upon as a guide is the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights which has been boiled
down as an extract from the major religions on Earth
to 30 very brief paragraphs. I would urge all of
you to read those again if you haven’t read them recently. And you’ll see that one of the key aspects which we are failing
on throughout the world is the fair treatment of women and girls. That’s just one of those but
it’s a very important thing. I have pledged myself
for the rest of my life, I’ll be 94 this year, (audience applauding) to devote my time to finding equality among people on Earth. (audience applauding) I don’t have any problems in my own life because my wife has always been, I would say superior to me but. (laughing) We’ve been married now 72 years, I said 73 this morning. (audience applauding) And I have pledged to try
to look upon other people who are different from me
the same way with respect and even with love like I look on my own wife. That’s a pretty big commitment but I promise you having gotten this award with which I’m very proud, that
I will try to adhere to it. Thank you very much. (audience applauding) – That was inspiring, it was invigorating. It was everything we all knew it would be. Thank you so much President Carter. You know I knew I was
gonna have to prepare for this interview and
I knew that your books would be great source material but even I had no idea
how many books there were. (laughing) 31 books. 32 just released last week and President Carter is too
modest to hawk it himself so I’m urging you all to buy a copy of Faith, A Journey for All. And you were on a book tour,
you’ve been on Stephen Colbert. That also was very intimidating. A friend sent me Colbert’s
interview and anyway, I was intimidated. Before we dive deeply into
the source material here I wonder if I can ask you to reflect a little more personally
on the power of proximity. You’ve just talked about
how proximate we all are. How we have to learn to live
in peace with one another. But you started your political career actually banging on individual doors. You started your campaigns by
actually going door to door. You and Mrs Carter I don’t think, maybe people didn’t know when
they saw that image of you walking down Pennsylvania Avenue that you were the first
presidential couple to leave the armored car
and walk down Pennsylvania to the White House with the people. (audience applauding) Isn’t that amazing, it’s amazing. A tradition that continues to this day. But can you just talk a little bit about the people you’ve been proximate to who have really influenced your life. Where did an idea like getting out of the armored limousine come from? – Well actually from a senator
who made that suggestion for a different reason. He thought I ought to demonstrate that I could walk that far as a symbol of masculine exercise. – Oh. (laughing) And Mrs Carter was probably
a little ahead of you. – She was. But I have to say that nowadays that would be quite an achievement
for me to walk that far. (laughing) – [Sally] I think you’re up to it. – But anyway what we found
as was reported, I think, on the screen. I couldn’t hear it all but when we have been to build habitat houses which we’ve done now
every year for 35 years for poor people in need
who never had a chance to own a decent home, we have, or when we’ve eliminated Guinea worm, I’ve done other things for
poverty-stricken people. We have found, as I said
in the screen already, that they are just as
intelligent, just as hardworking, family values are just as good as ours. And we tend to underestimate people that are poorer than we are. Or who are different from us. And nowadays I would say that
the discrimination against people who are different
has been elevated above what it was 15 years ago or so with the animosity against immigrants and not only in Europe but
also in the United States with verbiage. And also the alienation of
women is still going on. I had a lot more statistics I was gonna do but I wanna cut my talk
short to get to this but also to get home tonight. So these are, I think we have a great opportunity
ahead of us of excitement and satisfaction of
life and purpose in life and accomplishment as
we reach out to people who are different from us and find how wonderful they
are and how much they can add to our own lives. So every time we thought that
we were sacrificing ourselves to take on some task of that
kind we found that we got more benefit out of it than
we ever thought we would. – I’m sure that’s, I am sure that’s true and speaking of this you were
talking about living in peace and of course peace has
been signature work for you. Your presidential term in office was dramatically free of any conflict so a remarkable achievement in itself. But in talking about weapons as you did it triggered in my mind
the Parkland students and their traumatic experience and how that has just galvanized them and may just be seeding a
new movement in this country against gun control.
– I hope so. – Yeah. – In the new book, by the way, I describe the deleterious effect of the National Rifle Association and the succumbing by almost
every legislator in America, at least the majority of them, not only in this federal government but also in the state
and local governments to the National Rifle Association. And our country is plagued
with excessive firearms and the use of them so we’ve
seen that demonstrated. I think the Parkland students’ commitment I hope will be permanent
and they’ll stick with it. They’ll convince their
parents to vote against people who don’t comply with
doing away with the weapons and when they get old enough
they’ll vote that way as well. So I hope we don’t give up on that. – No I don’t think they’re going to. I think they’re gonna, they’re going to, they’re gonna just do what others have not been able to do. Many people watching the
film will have noticed the woman at your side, Rosalynn, your wife of nearly 73 years now. I can’t resist telling the
story of how you first met. President Carter’s mother, Miss Lillian, remarkable woman, a professional nurse delivered a baby, helped
deliver a baby in a hospital and then as a working mom
she checked in on the baby, she brought her three
year old son with her to meet the baby. So that baby was Eleanor Rosalynn Smith. – That’s right. – So at three years old. – I met my future wife. – He was smitten, he was smitten. A remarkable love story. A remarkable, remarkable. – We’ve been together
pretty close ever since. – Yeah isn’t that wonderful. Isn’t it. But I wonder if you’d tell us a little bit about Miss Lilian. Your passion for women’s rights, for equity between the sexes,
doesn’t come from nowhere. I mean you go through
all the data with us. You go through the reasoning. But I happen to know there have been some very strong influences in your life so can you talk to us a
little bit about Miss Lillian. – Well one of the most fortunate things that ever happened to me was
growing up in a neighborhood that didn’t have any white neighbors. All our neighbors, all my playmates, everybody who took care of me,
women, were African American. My mother was a registered nurse and she nursed 20 hours a day and was supposed to get paid $6 for that. She would get home at night at 10 o’clock and she would go back on duty at two o’clock in the morning. So as a teenager and so forth
I never saw my mother hardly. She was always working. And so Mother didn’t pay any
attention to racial segregation which was permeating
throughout our country then. This back in the 20s and 30s. And so my mamma was a full-time nurse and then later after my daddy died she was house mother for a few years in Auburn, Alabama, Auburn University and then mother was watching
the TV one day and it said they wanted volunteers in the Peace Corps and age is no limit. So mother volunteered for the Peace Corps. The only thing she asked for
was to go to a poor country that had dark-skinned people. So they sent her to India and
she was ordained to work there for 2 1/2 years. One of the things that Mamma did was she became an untouchable
because she took care of helping people with medicines
and cleaning her own floors and things of that kind and she worked in a very
wealthy neighborhood owned by wealthy people,
the Goodridge family. The gardener of the
Goodridges loved my mother and he gave her, secretly,
without telling the Goodridges, he gave her vegetables and
flowers and he told my mother that he had two children. One was a boy and one was a girl. And the boy was going to
school but he couldn’t afford the girl to go to school. So Mother, in order to
repay him, the gardener, taught the girl how to read and write and about the outside world. Later we were over in
India just a few years ago to build 100 homes for habitat and the Goodridge family are very wealthy. Since I was a former
president they invited all of the folks in to
meet me and Rosalynn. And well about 100 people
who had known my mother. So the paperback book volume
of my mother’s letters were there and the picture on the front was Mother sitting on a
rock with a little girl. So I asked the Goodridges
where’s the little girl now. And they said she’s here. So she stood up and I
said how you doing now. She said fine. I said what are you doing. She said I’m the president
of the university. (audience applauding) So Mother was a member
of the medical profession being a nurse so she was
able to pay no attention to the mores and customs of that time to distinguish between
African Americans and black and white people so I never,
I was heavily affected by my mother I was. – You clearly, you clearly were.
– It was one of the best things that ever happened to me when I was getting ready
to run for office because I was able to get Andrew Young and all of Daddy King’s family to help me. – That’s fantastic.
– And I couldn’t have done it had it not been for my mamma. – She was, Miss Lillian was 68 when she joined the Peace Corps. It was amazing, amazing. But you brought up this growing up in the deeply segregated South and
I wonder if you’d reflect on an experience you had when
you were 12 years old. You wrote a poem about it. We only saw it vaguely then. But we were transformed at that place. A silent line was drawn
between friend and friend, race and race. – Yeah I had two African American friends with whom I worked in the field and we were coming out
of the field one day and we went through what we
called a pasture gate between, went into the barn. And my friends stepped
back to let me go first. I thought it was a tripwire there that I would fall down
or something like that. But I went through first
and I couldn’t understand until I was an adult what happened. But I presumed then that
their parents had told them that we had reached the age
where they now had to treat me with deference but as I’ve said and also in the first part of that poem, the thing that distinguished between us as far as rank was concerned was who had caught the biggest fish or could run the fastest
or jump the highest or who could pick the
most cotton in one day. That was the way we set our scale. But that remained constant with me and it was not until I
was a submarine officer when in 1948 Harry Truman,
about seven years before Rosa Parks and Martin Luther
King came on the scene, Harry Truman ordained
as Commander in Chief that there was an end to all segregation in the military forces
or the civil service. So he was very courageous
and he lost the South because of that but he
was my number one hero among all the presidents I’ve known. – How wonderful. Wonderful, thank you. You referenced, in your
remarks you referenced a speech you made in Oslo. Of course we know that speech was for the Nobel Peace Prize and
you were asked to name, at the time, the world’s biggest challenge and you chose economic disparity. You’ve since decided that
disparity between the two genders, between women and men is
the greatest challenge, but economic disparity
has only grown far greater since that time
– It has. – President Carter and so it seems to me that that’s still a pretty
significant challenge. Do you think we can solve that challenge? – In the United States we can’t solve it until we change the Supreme Court. (audience applauding) – [Sally] You’re talking about the case. – And that income disparity
works to the disadvantage of a lot of things. For instance prisoners, when
I listened to Bryan speak a few minutes ago I was
impressed with the fact that when I left the White House
there was one person in America and a thousand who were in prison. Now there are 7 1/2 people per thousand so more than seven times as
many people are now in prison as when I left the White House in 1981. And it, our Attorney General now says he’s gonna increase that number. – It’s actually, I didn’t
wanna talk about politics. – I know.
– Really. I wanted to talk about – I’m sorry!
– you. Thank you. Thank you. But now you’ve made this
transition to thinking the greatest challenge on
Earth is this discrepancy, this disparity, this discrimination against women and girls
and I wonder if I could put you on the spot and
ask you if you think that equality and leadership in the world, if we had more women in
positions of power and influence, political power and influence as well as economic power and influence, if we’d have a better shot at peace. – I don’t think there’s any doubt that as far as peace
agreements are concerned the women will be much more
inclined to preserve the peace than men are. The women quite often
suffer more than the men during a war time. I think that’s one of
the basic human rights is to be able to live in peace. We’ve had on occasion, for
instance, in South Sudan when Johnny Garang was head of it or when we first got
started in South Sudan, where the women, including
his wife, took the leadership and they worked out a peace agreement. All of it hasn’t lasted
but we’ve had forums at the Carter Center since
we started working on gender discrimination with
women who have come from Pakistan and other places that have been involved
in peace agreements. And there’s no doubt in
my mind that a woman is naturally inclined more
towards peace than a man is. So yes I think we can move towards peace if women get more and more
positions in parliaments and more and more positions as president. I’m not talking about
any particular election in the United States but
there’s no doubt about that. – Well there are many many many more women running for office than has ever been true in history in the US. – In both parties.
– Yes yes yes. So that’s encouraging. – It is encouraging.
– That’s encouraging. Many people know about your
work, about your achievements, your presidential achievements. Your achievements as founder
of the Carter Center. But you have a really
wide range of interests. You’re an avid fly-fisherman. You paint, you write
poetry, you build furniture, you started downhill skiing
when you were in your 60s. You hike, you have an
extraordinary range of interests. Is there one of these
passions or pleasures that you return to that
really renews your spirit. – Well one of the things
that Rosalynn and I have tried to do is to give
each other plenty of space to do our own things we want to but try to find ways that
we could do things together. And so we’ve done that, I would say, at least since I’ve
been 35 or 40 years old and so yes we learned how
to downhill ski together for the first time. I was 62, she was 59. We’ve learned how to be birdwatchers. We now have more than 1300
species of birds on our list and we’re avid fly-fishers. We’ve fished in almost all over the world and still we’re going to
Mexico at the end of this month as a matter of fact to fish
for bonefish and permit. So we try to find things to do together. But I do my own painting. I’m painting now things
that’ll be used for our Christmas card at the
Carter Center this coming year. I’m struggling with it and I– – What’s the image? – Well the image is gonna
be a cardinal of birds with snow falling. Which is difficult for me. I haven’t seen much snow fall in the south.
– None in Atlanta, yeah. (laughing) – But I’ve seen a lot of cardinals. Well the cardinals are gonna be good, the snow is not gonna be good. (laughing) So we try to find ways to do things and I’ve enjoyed building furniture. And just doing things with my own skills and Rosalynn obviously is
better than I am in most things but we’ve learned how to
get along with each other. – You have. 73 years is quite– – Well it’s 72 years, I made a mistake this morning.
– 72. It’s 72.
– 72 years. – Okay 72 years. Yes and I don’t think she’d want you to, want you to exaggerate just yet. So do you have a fish story for us? Is there one that got away on one of those fly-fishing trips? – Well I have so many got away I couldn’t even think about all of them. But Rosalynn quite often
catches more fish than I do. I’m a much better fisherman than she is but she’s luckier than I am. (laughing) – Oh there you go, there you go. Last question President Carter. Shortly after the inauguration
last year in the US I remember having a conversation
with Phil Wise who’s here and Phil of course has been with you for a good long time. 23 odd years at the Carter Center. But Phil was also your
Sunday School student at the age of 12 and– – Phil’s father was my best friend. – Oh! I didn’t know that, that’s wonderful. That’s wonderful. Well anyway Phil assured me
of your belief and his belief that the institutions of the
American democracy were strong. That they were resilient
and that they would hold. It gave me a great deal of comfort. I believe that too. But I wondered as we are
seeing all over the world the institutions of democracy being tested as we’re seeing the rise of nationalism, populist movements and strong men I wonder if you’re still as confident. – Well I still have faith. That’s why I wrote the book. My publishers were very concerned about the lack of faith around the world and a lot of things that
we treasured in the past. Democracy, freedom, the
benefit of telling the truth. Things like that that are now shaken. And so I still have faith
in a great United States and my own country and my own people. In the past we’ve overcome some very terrible
challenges successfully. Getting our independence
when it was very doubtful and ending slavery when
it was very doubtful. Giving women the right
to vote and so forth, sometimes belatedly but
we’ve always been successful. And I think we have
overcome the ravages of the Great Depression and
the Second World War. Eleanor Roosevelt our former First Lady was one of the key drafters and authors of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. So I think that inherently
America is very strong. We are kind of a mosaic of heterogeneity. People come to the United
States from all over the world and a lot of them who
come and I would presume that some of their genes are carried down come as adventurers. They try new things, they win prizes from the Skoll Foundation for
entrepreneurship and so forth. So I would say that
because of our past history of difficulties, sometimes
belatedly overcoming them successfully and the
make up of our society and innovation that the
United States has shown in being a world leader, I
think that we will prevail yes. I gave you a long rambling answer but I think we’ll prevail. – [Sally] It was the right answer! – I have faith in America. – And we have faith in you. We have faith in the
principles and the integrity of your leadership. We have faith in all the people who are taking that
inspiration with them today into the world and before we conclude and we get you back to Atlanta
because I know you have a very big gathering of
friends at the Carter Center that you wanna be there for,
I want everybody to know that Jimmy Carter is the first American to receive the Skoll Global Treasure Award and I think you know why. (audience applauding) – Thank you so much. God bless you. God bless you.
– Thank you. – [Announcer] Ladies and gentlemen please welcome to the stage Chief Executive of Doc
Society, Jess Search. (audience applauding) – Good afternoon. Good afternoon. (audience cheering) Good afternoon. Well. What an amazing year we’ve had for women. Since we were last gathered
here in Oxford 12 months ago. The Me Too and Time’s Up movements have led to hundreds of
men losing their jobs and in some cases their reputations. And millions more
rethinking their behavior all over the world. In the last 12 months, yes. (audience applauding) In the last 12 months Saudi women have won the right to drive. Serbia has got its first
female prime minister. Chile has at least partially
raised the ban on abortion for the first time. And as women rise so the
rules on gender conformity are rewritten, making space
too for transgender people to step forward. A small town in Canada
became the first to elect a transgender female mayor. And young people, young women
are stepping up to leadership like never before. The horror of the Parkland school shooting had an equal but opposite reaction. The student activism of young women like 18 year old Cuban
American Emma Gonzales. And girls like 11 year old
African American Naomi Wadler. Their maturity having a sobering effect on a country drunk on guns. I know you wanna clap
each one of these moments and they all deserve that
applause in their own right. On International Women’s
Day just two weeks ago Rebecca Solnit, she
wrote, this is a revolt for which we have been
preparing for decades. Or perhaps it is at the
point at which a long, slow, mostly quiet process suddenly
became fast and loud. And so the world, also
the Skoll World Forum, now it’s time for women to lead. You are about to meet three
extraordinary women leaders from South Africa, from Costa Rica and from Couchiching First Nation. Who better to kick us off
than the executive director of UN Women. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka began her career as a teacher in her native South Africa but rose to become deputy
president under Mbeki where she oversaw anti-poverty initiatives with a particular focus on women. She is no stranger to
British universities. She completed her PhD on
education and technology at the University of Warwick but my notes say that she
hasn’t defended it yet. I can’t imagine what she’s been up to. I think the UN have been
keeping her quite busy these last five years. Please welcome the ultimate women’s woman. Phumzile. (audience applauding) – Thank you very much for
that kind introduction. So nervous following
after President Carter. What a hard act to follow. And he said everything I
wanted to say and much better. So have mercy on me. Thank you very much to the
Skoll Foundation for the forum, for having us here and for
being one of the shining lights of our time. In 2018 Google reported
that the world searched women’s rights 700% more than they would normally see a search about this concept
in the month of January 2018. I guess this suggests that
there is an increased interest in issues and the subject
of women’s rights. I think it was guys searching because I think women knows
what women’s rights are. But you know better late than never hey. This also could mean
that there is an effort to be part of the journey
that would ensure that women does respect women rights. But we cannot be complacent. We cannot say because there
is this upsurge of interest we have arrived and we have a journey that we’ve been traveling
getting to an end. I think we should see this as a moment that you should be turning
into a tipping moment because we know that it
would take much more for us to change the systems and the structures that impinge gender equality. But we also have to be opportunistic. When we see a moment turn it
into something formidable. When we look at sexual
harassment and abuse and I want to focus just on
sexual harassment and abuse just at work because
it’s much more difficult for people like us to
deal with it at home. But workplace is an institution. This is a workplace hazard like if there isn’t an
air condition at work. Someone has to take responsibility
to do something about it, to fix it and be accountable. So it should not be left to the women to fight for themselves. It should also not be
left to the perpetrator to decide how they are
going to deal with it. Perpetrator must take responsibility but the institution,
the department of labor, the minister responsible for
employment, the shareholders, the customers, all have a
stake in making sure that we bring about systemic change. (audience applauding) Here, as we sit in this
room, we also have a stake in seeing progress
because of our proximity both to the issues and to the institution. We have proximity to each other. It is a luxury not to be
able to use our proximity to each other to bring up a change that comes with the power
of our collaboration. We have proximity to the women and girls that we seek to support and to ensure that they are not abused in any manner. We have proximity also
to the powers that be in different ways. We have proximity also
to the informal power that has come with the
era of the social media, where no one has to elect
you to have heaps of people listening to you in their
thousands and their million. That is the power that
we all have proximity to. So we must and we can use
this different opportunity and levels of proximities,
if there’s a word like that, in order for us to be the
change that we can be. Sometime back in my other
life I was a minister of mines and energy in South Africa. That was at the time of the
height of blood diamonds, especially in Angola,
DRC and Sierra Leone. Even though in my country the
problem was not as significant it was dilapidating for me to see how what was happening in those countries, not always the problem of
abuse of rights and deaths and killing and
disruptions of communities, but those governments also
had no revenue to collect because this one resource
they had that they could use to run their economies was
slipping through their hands because of the way it was traded. But you know diamond is a dirty business. You have the buyers, the miners,
the sellers, the processors and any old person in between and in order for us to stop the seepage you needed to bring everybody inside for us to address the
issue of blood diamonds. To cut the story short we
ended up with something that is called the Kimberley Process. Some of you may know about it. It helped us to track the diamonds from the mine to the finger and to market so that we are able to separate
illegally traded diamonds. That for me is one of the
many complex processes I’ve ever been involved in but at that time there was
so much concern in the world about the issue. There was a tipping moment, an opportunity but that no country could
do anything about by itself. We needed to come together,
force someone, everybody inside the tent and
take the matter forward. On the issues of gender equality we need everybody inside the tent in order for us to pull
all the strings together because we are all
affected in different ways. Today the day is Equal Pay Day. Another injustice that
needs complex solution. And yet there’s a potential tipping point. It depends what we do
and can do with a moment. Today the average equal pay gap in the world is 23%. It gets worse if you’re a
woman of color, indigenous, disabled and in some cases
your sexual orientation also makes a difference. This is a problem that has a solution and frankly this is robbery. The fact that women work as hard as men and they are not paid
for selling their labor to the same bidder doing
exactly the same work and the different laws that hinder women’s economic remuneration of different sorts requires all of us to be inside the tent to use our proximity to
the different stakeholders from trade unions who should be able, at this point in history,
to be fighting as much for higher wages as it should
be a fight for equal wages. Because once this issue is
in the bargaining chamber you actually begin to deal
with it in a different way. This is an issue again of customers who care about equality. This is an issue for shareholders. But just like the issue of sexual violence and the issue of equal pay
are complex and significant they also need all of us
in society to come together because I feel we have reached
a point in the struggle for gender equality. We have been exhausted as
women because it has been hard but we have reached a
point where in South Africa we would say this is a time
for truth and reconciliation. But I want to call it the
time for truth and correction because if you address the
issue of sexual violence, staying with sexual
violence at the work place, only about 10% of the
women who are affected do report and have access to justice. If all the women who have
been harassed were to stand up can you imagine what
would happen to companies. But that’s not a reason to keep quiet and to leave women in that state. Someone has to lead from the front for a dialog in nations to begin so that we can crack this
situation and move on and make sure that justice
is served to women. If you think also about
the issue of equal pay some companies have said to me
we just don’t have the money. So what should happen to women? Should this be the rest of their lives? Must the women take one for the team? If you consider how much
also shareholders are able to take for themselves there
has got to be a time when we sit down and we intervene and we say something has to be done. So these issues are complex
but they need answers. (audience applauding) And you cannot leave it to civil society, women’s organizations who
only have placards sometimes to fight with who have done
everything in their power. Any person, any leader, any head of state and the different institutions
including institutions such as religious institutions need to be part of the tent because this is the tipping point
where truth and correction has to happen in society. Let us take the issue of forced
early marriage of children. Children that have been
married off to people that are old enough to be their
fathers, their grandfathers and generally their caregivers. This is a practice that
is sanctioned by society in the presence of their
parents, sometimes governments, communities, traditional
leaders et cetera. To turn around this situation we now know what are the building
blocks and the interventions that are critical. There are people in this audience
who have worked very hard to take us where we are today,
where we’re beginning to see the decline of the practice
in some parts of the world. But we cannot leave the next
generation and our children in this situation. This is a battle we have to win and we are the ones that
must win this generation, this battle in this generation but it does mean we have
to bring everybody inside that can help us with solutions. One thing I learnt from Nelson Mandela was the importance of working
with people you disagree with when you need a solution. Many of this problems that have
to do with gender inequality do require that the
people we disagree with need to be part of the solution which is why we also
reach out to men and boys, not because they have to protect women, because they have got to do their duty. And thankfully there’s an
increasing number of good men who are making a
difference but not enough. We therefore, whether you’re talking about ending violence against
women at work and elsewhere. Whether you are talking
about addressing the issue of equal pay and the denial
of women of the remuneration that they’ve worked for. Whether you’re talking
about child marriage and forced marriage of children to people that are old enough to be their parents, these are complex issues and
these issues have got answers and we need everybody to be
part of finding a solution. We also need effective
use of data and evidence so that you are able to
work in a targeted way. We did a study towards
the end of last year checking the implementation of the SDG’s and the impact on women
and girls in 85 countries. And we are, in particular,
looking at what is happening to poverty. We found that women between
the ages of 24 and 35 remained the poorest people on Earth and the reason why and
this was in all countries, rich and poor countries
and the reason for that was because of motherhood. Of the burden of care. Because at that age they are
struggling to raise a family on one hand and they are trying also to settle in the labor market. They have older parents to look after and they become leaders in their community and any of the little
things in the community and the big things that other
people do not want to do they end up with them. And for that they get marginalized from active economic benefits. These women are young enough
to actually start their lives all over again because they
have a long life ahead of them so it is important to
take correctional action and to make sure that we can support them. What this means to us and
I think to many of you who follow this issue is that
the issue of the care economy and the burden of care
has a significant impact on the future of our economies but devastating impact
on the lives of women. And these are some of the
big challenges of our time that need us to find
solution, not just to reduce but actually to end these practices because in each one of them
where we find a solution the benefits are there for everybody. If we end violence against women we all know the upside of that. If we address an equal pay we
all know the upside of that for economies, for families,
for health, for education. If we address unpaid care
work we also know the benefits and the upside. I chose those three examples to illustrate that some of these complex things, for which our proximity
gives us a unique possibility to provide solutions, are
killing our nations and yet this is where lies the
answers that can give us some of the big advantages
that we need in society. So this is 2018. They are searching for the
meaning of women’s rights in an unprecedented manner
so there may be a moment only if we take the other steps. This is 2018. We are the first generation
with a real possibility to address power relations
between men and women in a significant way. This is 2018. We have significant
possibility to address poverty of women and girls in a significant way even if we just focus to
this age group of 24 and 35. And this is 2018. We are the last generation who
can do something significant to avert some of the fears that we have that would come for us
not paying attention to the challenges of climate change. That makes us special and
that gives us significant and strategic proximity and
I think we should cherish our place in history. Thank you. (audience applauding) – I think Phumzile and I are gonna need a truth and correction process over my pronunciation of her surname but she very generously told
me before we got started that I didn’t have a
hope of getting it right so she was gonna be quite tolerant of how I reproduced it. But yes thank you Phumzile. So we’re now gonna turn our attention to the most pressing challenge
mentioned by Phumzile. The most pressing
challenge of this convening and of our time, climate change. And I’m gonna be
welcoming up two speakers. Christiana Figueres is
another UN superwoman. She led the UN Framework
Convention on Climate Change from 2010 to 2016 which
means that she picked up from the disappointment of Copenhagen and landed the Paris Agreement for which, her role in which, she
deserves our deepest gratitude. And she deserves our greatest support now because she informs me
that she is not capable of single-handedly making the world hold to those climate promises. Her current role is as the
convener of Mission 2020, a global initiative which aims to curb greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2020. Just two years time. She’ll be joined up here by Tara Houska who is a native rights attorney from the Couchiching First Nation. She is the national campaigns
director for Honor the Earth, an environmental justice
organization run by native leaders. And given our theme of
proximity I can say that Tara has been very close to the action. She’s lived under canvas
at both Standing Rock and now at pipeline three
in northern Minnesota. Please welcome Christiana and Tara. (audience applauding) So proximity. We were thrillingly proximate to President Carter back there. – We were. – I sort of sat down then
realized he was just a touch away. Actually we are too far away. – [Tara] We are. – Let us increase our proximity. Tara. Better. – Much better.
– Better. So I wanna start by asking you how you’re thinking about
this theme of proximity in terms of both of your
work on this issue right now. Christiana. – You know when I found
out that this was the topic of this year’s Skoll Forum
I thought how fantastic. How fantastic because that
is exactly the contradiction that is in the public
perception about climate. For me climate is all about proximity. That is what it is. And in the public’s eye,
unfortunately all too frequently, there is a sense that climate
has absolutely no proximity. That there is no proximity
in timing or in geography. That the effects are gonna
happen a hundred years from now and has nothing to do with me or that the effects are gonna happen to those who live over there
wherever over there is. Bangladesh, India. Nothing can be further from
the truth because, for one, climate is already affecting
every single living being on this planet, whether
we are aware of it or not. And that woman in
Bangladesh or in the Sahil, how is she not my sister. How is she not my sister? So geographic proximity, dead. And the lack of timing
proximity also dead right because to think that this is gonna happen a hundred years from
now, no, is happening now and beyond that yes we know
that it’s going to get worse. That is the responsibility. The responsibility is precisely to avoid the worst impacts because I have two daughters and
they will have children maybe but it’s not about my blood and kin it’s about all future generations. That is our responsibility. It’s not to be sitting here
as though we were little earthworms right. I mean those who say
okay there’s no proximity in climate change are sort of having a little earthworm mentality. Earthworms are wonderful,
they are actually created to live underground
but we were not created to live underground. We were created actually to stand up. And to stand up to our
responsibility, to our legacy, to our solidarity. That is why we’re human. (audience applauding) – Well that was amazing. So the theme of proximity, as we’ve heard all these
different amazing speakers present and tell their stories, to me
it’s, I am not a statistic. My people are not statistics. We have this tendency to displace and say it’s over there somewhere. Just like you’re saying. The one in two native women
are sexually assaulted in her lifetime. You look at something like that and– – One in three?
– One in two. – One in two?
– They actually upped, it’s gotten worse. The problem has gotten worse. It was one in three and
now it’s one in two. That’s appalling. It’s an appalling statistic
but it’s not a statistic it’s a reality. It’s a reality of somebody that I know. It’s someone that I recognize and see. It is that indigenous peoples
are impacted first and worst by climate change. It’s happening somewhere else, no it’s happening to our communities. This understanding that we
are all in this together. That my problems are your problems. That the problems of this
community that’s not my own is still my community. We are all connected. It is what we saw at the
resistance at Standing Rock. It’s what we’re seeing at
the resistance happening against the Trans Mountain Pipeline which just got suspended,
amazing amazing organizing. (audience applauding) It’s all of these people coming together and recognizing we can
stand for a unified cause and that unified cause is humanity. It is our future generations. – And I know when we talked
you were pointing out that actually it was the peoples
who came to Standing Rock because it was proximity for them that have led to this huge
moment for everyone else. Sometimes it is the people
who are closest to the problem who are going to bring the activism which is going to inspire the rest of us. – Absolutely, all of
these people came from all these different walks of life, recognizing this is an
issue of indigenous rights. These people who are
consistently forgotten in the conversation of America despite it being where
we’re actually from. That we are this kind
of footnote in history and after that it was really
sad but then it moves on. No we’re still here and
our teepees have WiFi. This crazy idea of do
you live in a teepee. I’m like yeah it’s got WiFi
and a second floor, it’s great. (laughing) It’s all these people come
in with those ideas, right. They came to Standing
Rock with those ideas but then learned and created
this new community together. This beautiful community that was all these different people
sharing and bringing culture and bringing perspective and skillsets and unified cause of beauty
of we can do this together. We can stand against these machines and we can make a difference. – And on June 1st Trump announced
that he will pull America from the Paris Agreement. I can only imagine–
– Excuse me, the United States because America is a
continent with many countries. – I’m so sorry.
– Yes. (audience applauding) – That was a little bit of
truth and correction just there. That must have been, as the architectress of the Paris Agreement that must have been a devastating moment. Where were you on June 1st
when that news came through? – I was traveling and I knew
the speech was coming so I organized my day so that I could listen. I listened with a little
piece of paper and a pen and I thought every time that
there is a correct statement I am going to write it down. And at the end of the speech
I had a blank piece of paper. And I thought oh my gosh, okay. This is the head of, arguably, the most important country in
the world standing up there in front of all of the
cameras in the world and there is not one correct statement in that entire speech. And it was in the Rose
Garden, I thought poor roses. (laughing) How are they being subjected to this? But here is what I have seen since then. I didn’t graduate from
kindergarten so I think in pictures so this is the picture
that has evolved for me over the past year. It is sort of as though all
of the countries of the world have created, unfortunately I am gonna use the picture about highway and
I know I have to change this, improve it, but it’s a highway
with many different lanes. The highway is the highway
of decarbonization. There are many lanes. Some are for the fast-moving vehicles. Some are for the slower. Some, there are many different
vehicles of engagement but everybody is moving
in the same direction on the same side of the highway and then one vehicle, large as it is, but it decides to park
itself off over here. And not only does it park itself over here but it actually starts
blinking yellow lights right. Tick, tick, tick. What the parked vehicle with
the blinking lights wants is for everybody to stop what
they’re doing, turn around and pay attention. You know what happens if
you’re driving down a highway and you stop and pay attention to the blinking light that’s parked. That could be very dangerous. So my suggestion is let’s
just ignore this vehicle and most vehicles that are
parked along the highway. (audience applauding) The fact is that most
vehicles that are parked in the highway and
particularly if they have blinking lights, they’re
in some kind of trouble so let them deal with that. In the meantime most of the US economy is actually still on the highway. Certainly all of the other countries. And eventually they’ll
figure it out and join us. (audience applauding) – And Tara I know that you
were at Standing Rock when that news came through
and obviously that had very bad consequences
for the Dakota pipeline decision making but I
wanna kind of fast-forward a little bit because
actually, as well as doing that amazing work on the ground
that you were doing there, you also began to kind of track, to kind of like who else
was responsible for this and who else needs to kind
of be held accountable and I wondered if you wanted to speak to. In fact actually a good
place to start would be Tara has not been to the UK before. She arrived on Sunday
morning and on Monday, perhaps you can say what you did. – On Monday I met with
HSBC, JP Morgan Chase and Barclays to discuss their
investment in tar sands, fossil fuels and arctic drillings. (audience applauding) – And you had an extraordinary journey and I know it began with some Sami people who were with you at Standing
Rock who sort of said come to Norway and talk to our banks. I wonder if you could just
kind of run us through that first big early
wins that you guys had. – So there was a point in
the campaign at Standing Rock where we were blockaded in
physically by the police and we couldn’t actually access the space to block the pipeline
from being constructed. What do we do? What can we do? And people began going
out and figuring out okay who are the banks funding this project. They began shutting down
bank branches and it happened first in North Dakota, then in Minnesota then it started expanding all over and then it was what can I do to help. I can do this in my community. And then it turned into
the Sami people came out and stood with us at Standing Rock and brought that message back and then the Norwegian oil fund is the third largest funder
of fossil fuels in the world. Well let’s have this
conversation with them about what they’re doing
back to these people out of sight out of mind and
we’ll start this conversation and then you can come over and see and talk with them yourself. And these indigenous
women came and sat with the Norwegian oil fund and all these different
banking institutions and after a couple of meetings,
it took more than a few, we got the news back that
they were thinking about pulling out of the Dakota
Access Pipeline project and then a little bit later
they were thinking about pulling out of fossil fuels altogether. And when that happened,
the Norwegian oil fund is this massive institution so it was, the entire industry for a day, the whole stock market was
like oh God, not these guys, they can’t pull out of this industry. That’s just a few committed people making this massive change
in this huge industry. And that’s continued, we’ve
continued to meet with them to the tune of, just in
this last year and a half we’re at almost $8 billion and counting of cities and pension funds
and banking institutions pulling out of fossil fuels. – Fast forward the Norwegian
sovereign wealth fund as you point out is one of the largest sovereign wealth funds
and they, as you say Tara, they have decided for themselves that they wanna pull out of fossil fuels. They have to get permission from the government of Norway right. So they have requested
parliamentary permission. The interesting thing,
I think fascinating, is the reason why they’re pulling out. They are pulling out,
or they want to pull out because they don’t wanna
be exposed to double-risk. Double-risk. That’s the interesting
thing about this, okay. They have understood that their income comes from fossil fuels. Risk number one because we
may be leaving quite a bit of that stuff underground. And then, of course,
they can’t afford to take the finance, the capital that comes, the profit that comes from that and re-invest it into the same industry because that would be a double-risk. So just for the protection of their own, just for frankly fiduciary
duty thank heavens finally being written large,
fiduciary duty and they, as well they should see it that way. Now they’re saying okay hold on our funding comes, our
benefits and all our capital comes from oil and gas but we
cannot afford a double-risk. That’s very important right because it is the financial arguments that
are actually going to win this battle on divesting over
to not just lower carbon, lower risk, that’s the whole point. – Does it give you hope?
– We have to hit them in the pocket books and
not in their hearts right. We can’t appeal to their morality but when you talk about their
money then it’s oh my goodness I’m so upset, I have to
do something about this. – [Christiana] That’s kind of their job! – You sit in these meetings with bankers and I get to talk with them about the Trans Mountain
Pipeline being suspended and their faces were so
sad for just a moment but then you tell them about this horrible cultural genocide that’s
happening from these projects and they’re like that seems
like a really serious issue. You’re like okay, here’s your interest. – It really gives me hope when I look at the divestment movement. It’s a relatively new movement
and the kind of timetable that we need to be on for this planet, it’s exciting to see so much money moving and this is something
which affects all of us. I wonder if I could ask,
if you work in finance and investment can you put
your hand up and keep it up. If you work for
grant-making organizations, so you handle grant money, so
keep your hands up you people and then add your hand as well. If you have money in
the bank add your hand. Yeah I mean, this affects us all.
– Yeah. – We have so little time. I might ask if we can overrun by even just a couple of minutes. We have three minutes left I have so much that we need to kind of speak about but I’m gonna move us on again. The role of women. This is such an urgent crisis. We’ve got two years to get on track, to get on track with the Paris Agreement to kind of wake up the
hearts and minds and wallets of individuals, of communities
and societies, organizations. What is the role of women in this ’cause I feel like
there’s been a very male and technocratic approach
to climate change up until this point. Do either of you wanna comment on that? – I can jump in. Yes and yes that I do think that the increasing from where I sat at the UN. I could literally see in the participation and the negotiations over the six years that took the negotiation
of the Paris Agreement, I could literally see the
increase of women participating in the negotiations. Good on that right. And I do think that women
have a certain propensity to think or to act more collaboratively. To engage in collective leadership. To be much more inclusive,
much more empathetic, much more long-term thinking
because of our biology. So we do have a certain
propensity for that. However I do also want to point out that just because women are
sitting on the table that is no guarantee that
we’re actually gonna address these issues okay. And secondly it is frankly
unfair to have thousands of years of our history in which we have
discriminated against women and now all of a sudden we’re
waking up and we’re going right women are gonna
bring peace to the world and they’re gonna save the planet. I thought we’d just
discriminated against them for thousands of years. – [Jess] But we are aren’t we? – Well. – I mean to be fair.
– In collaboration! No no no, I actually do
think it’s important that we recognize what I would
call these feminine traits and I wish we had other name for it, that need to be present
in women and in men. And didn’t we just hear
President Carter, right, speaking about love. Speaking about equality. Those are the traits,
whether it comes from a man or a woman, that is
what is going to get us there. So it’s not just about having women it’s about the traits that we bring. (audience applauding) – I would say that in terms
of organizing on the ground and within communities women are the backbone of the movement whether it is the
environment, social justice, all these different places. You’re seeing women who do
these things so often selflessly and without needing to stand up in front and take the microphone
and be that person. A story I like to look back to is when they first started
bringing in the machines in North Dakota and they
were like what do we do. There was all these people standing there, just a little group of
people, what do we do and they were all arguing
and all these men were, you know, doing their thing. These four women just jumped the fences and just went in front and
sat in front of the machines. Like that’s how simple it was. It was like all right I’m done with this, we’re gonna go do that because
this is happening right now. We have a duty to our future generations. – Yeah we do. – Like this is real and we
cannot sit there waiting. We have to actually assert
ourselves and if whether it’s behind the scenes
doing all the organizing. Whether it’s being
supportive and feeding people as they’re doing this difficult work. Women are asserting themselves in a way that I think is really
powerful and so needed at this time in history. – Totally agree. And men need to be there also. – Yes.
– At the front line. – With the time that we don’t have left what I’d like to do is,
this is the beginning of the amazing Skoll World
Forum and over the next two or three days all
these incredible people who’ve come from all over the world are gonna be in session with
each other, in conversation. What do you want to implant in
their hearts and their minds that would be in conversation
over the course of the conference and that they
will take home with them back to their work places, back
to their places of worship, back to their schools,
back to their homes. What do you want to charge
this conference with? What is their responsibility? – You can go first. – I would like to burst the bubble that addressing climate change is somebody else’s responsibility right. I think we need to all
jump over that fence and get there right in
front of that missionary. So what does that look like for all of us? Let me say four things perhaps. If you are still eating meat every day (audience cheering) you are advocating your responsibility. Simple as that. (audience applauding) – I think somebody agrees with you. In fact I think many
people agree with you. – If you are using your
own gas guzzling vehicle to get to and from
everywhere you go on your own you are abdicating your responsibility. (audience applauding) If you are, to pick up Tara’s point. If you are managing funds or if you have your disposable capital
and any of that is invested in high carbon you are
advocating responsibility. Find out where your money is. Do not abdicate that responsibility. And finally and finally for all of us who have the privilege
of living in countries with democratic countries because not everybody
has a democratic system. If you are not actively
advocating and voting for political leaders
that act on climate change you’re not just advocating responsibility you are complicit to a crime. (audience applauding) – First think about where your food and where your water comes from. People forget that they buy it packaged, it’s been turned into something else. Everything that we have
comes from the earth. Everything that we get rid of
goes back to that same earth. We have a responsibility to actually know where these things come
from and to understand that if those places are contaminated,
if they’re extracted, if they’re destroyed
that affects you also. It is not just our problem
it is your problem. Second. Think about your consumption. How much do you really need? How much do we all need
to actually survive? Our consumption rate is so out of control in westernized society. It is amazing how people
just continually think that buying things will fill that soul. That it’ll make you happy. That is not what happiness is. That will never ever make you fully happy. So consumption is out of control. Third. Wake up and look at what’s
happening around you. Not only in your environment and spending time with
actually oh there’s the sun and there’s trees and there’s the world. Actually spend time and
think what is happening in my local governance system. Who’s sitting on the school board? Who is teaching my children? Who is responsible for
creating that curriculum? What are we giving the next generation? How are we actually engaging in that and not just sitting back
and looking at the very top because top-down
organizing, it’s not enough and it’s not working. And last. I hope that we can all
take it upon ourselves to teach and accept the
truth both past and present. We need to change how we are living and how we are understanding each other. An inclusive society cannot be inclusive unless we are all sitting at the table and that means understanding
everyone’s backgrounds and not teaching these versions of history and versions of the present that are steered towards one group. So I hope that we can all do that. (audience applauding) – Thank you, we are–
– I think you’re going to close. Can I do 30 seconds?
– You may. – We’ve spoken about the
role of men and women but I just truly cannot be up
here without asking everyone to thank an extraordinary man without whose commitment and vision none of us would be here and frankly the good impact on the world
would be very very diminished. Jeff Skoll. (audience applauding) Can we stand for Jeff? – I think that sends him a
fantastic get well card from us. – Absolutely. – Thank you both of you
and it’s just a privilege to have spent this time with you and I feel that myself and all
of us have been duly charged. Let this infect our conversations over the next few days. Right we’ve got to get off. We’re like, we’re like late, gotta go. Go, go. (singing in foreign language) – [Man] Created by four women
across South and North America LADAMA is creating Latin alternative music with a modern twist. The group first met in 2014
at a US State Department cultural exchange called OneBeat. Today they tour and record together as well as facilitate
workshops around the world. – [Woman] My name is Daniela Serna. I’m from Bogota, Colombia. And I’ve been working the last 12 years in Caribbean alternative
music with different bands. But pretty much I’ve worked with girls. – [Man] Their music-making
projects create spaces where participants have to
creatively rely on each other and often explore themes around community, expression and healing. (upbeat guitar music) – [Daniela] Being with
LADAMA, being with three women that are from completely different places gives you like a different
perspective of things. I mean we are a collective,
international collective of women building
communities through sound. – [Man] Other workshops
involve working with youth, exploring the sound that surround them as potential building blocks
for creative expression. – We spent the last workshop working on improvisatory percussion games. – [Woman] And now you are
big, big, bigger wave. (rhythmic drumbeats) – These workshops are
basically creation workshops and they differ group to group because every group is different. Every group wants to
do something different. (singing in foreign language) – LADAMA Project is a
cultural cross-project to empower women and youth to recognize the power
they have through music all over the world. (singing in foreign language) – Good evening everyone. The song we just performed, it’s called (speaking in foreign language) and it’s a mixture between
(speaking in foreign language), a traditional rhythm
from the Caribbean coast in Colombia, my country, with (speaking in foreign language) Afro-Brazilian rhythm. This is just the perfect
example of who we are as a band and how we connect and
feel closer to each other. I would love to introduce
you to our collaborator and bass player Pat Swoboda
from Brooklyn, New York. (audience applauding) We are LADAMA. Four women from four different countries. Sara Lucas from Brooklyn, New York. (audience applauding) Lara Klaus from Recife, Brazil. (audience applauding) Myself Daniela Serna
from Bogota, Colombia. (audience applauding) – And our fourth member, fourth
woman is unable to be here. Mafer Bandola, she’s from
Barquisimeto, Venezuela. She was unable to procure her visa. It’s our reality. – So thank you Skoll for having us. The next song’s called
(speaking in foreign language) (speaking in foreign language)
in Portuguese means bond. And this song is about the
importance of making a bond with each other. And I think this song translates
what LADAMA is as a band and it is in our record LADAMA. (upbeat rhythmic music) (singing in foreign language) (audience applauding) – So in keeping with the spirit of what we’ve heard today this song, like Bryan Stevenson was
saying, bears witness, calls out but also gives hope. Thank you so much for bringing us here. It is a huge honor, thank you. (audience applauding) (upbeat rhythmic music) ♪ Are we living at an age of progress ♪ ♪ All the footprints are the past ♪ ♪ Our mouths are not
our eyes are open wide ♪ ♪ And we’re begging begging to be fed ♪ ♪ Desperate people make ideal workers ♪ ♪ But confused lovers ♪ ♪ Love will never leave us ♪ ♪ If it only had a chance
to rest, chance to rest ♪ ♪ In our homes ♪ ♪ Do we deserve ♪ ♪ A state of unrest ♪ ♪ Maybe it’s our fate ♪ ♪ Well I believe that we’re given ways ♪ ♪ To see, feel and a chance to breathe ♪ ♪ We can dream like we did
when we were children ♪ ♪ But if we say half of what we mean ♪ ♪ Not make plain what is unseen ♪ ♪ We will be middle men for our past ♪ ♪ Can we use these arms for bracing ♪ ♪ Or do we bury them in the sand ♪ ♪ And are we gonna wait to see ♪ ♪ Who will come a knocking,
knocking on our doors ♪ ♪ Do we deserve ♪ ♪ A state of unrest ♪ ♪ Maybe it’s our fate ♪ ♪ Well I believe that we’re given ways ♪ ♪ To see, feel and a chance to breathe ♪ ♪ We can dream like we did
when we were children ♪ ♪ But if we say half of what we mean ♪ ♪ Not make claim what is unseen ♪ ♪ We will be middle men for our past ♪ ♪ We will be middle men for our past ♪ (audience applauding) Thank you. (audience cheering) (gentle music)

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