Posted by: Jean-Paul Behrens | November 4, 2009

Bill Clinton Visits!!

Today Former-President Bill Clinton came to speak at AUD. Putting aside the event organization… which is something you have to get used to around here… his visit was impressive. He is by far one of the most inspirational speakers I’ve ever seen. Here are some of the topics he spoke about:

  • Increasing interdependance of the world
  • Positive and negative consequences of interdependance
  • Climate change
  • Conflict in the Middle East
  • Women empowerment
  • Education as an essential tool
  • Global initiative to end poverty
  • Importance of taking local action within societies
  • and mooore!

That’s just what I can remember from the top of my head. He spoke for about 45 minutes but I wish would have stayed longer. I had a great seat and could take cool pics of him entering.

Here are two of my favorite quotes, although I could not get them word by word exactly:

“Peace is not the absence of conflict, it is the possibility of cooperation and opportunity to come together and overcome differences”

“The world is not perfect, meanwhile you life is passing by and you have to decide how you want to live it”

On this last one he was talking about taking initiative and address issues that affect your society. To take local action and put your mind to work so you can find ways to solve problems. He then went on and gave three examples of how normal people have made a difference in very poor environments.

In this picture he’s talking about a solar powered flashlight that is used in Haiti to allow people to have light during night and increase everything from educational opportunities to working output. It only costs $5!! Also, he spoke about the microcredits started by Muhammad Yunus in the Bangladesh Grameen Bank and how now everyone in the world could become a microcredit lender through the use of www.kiva.org. With only $25 I could help someone realize their goals somewhere. Even though I don’t exactly have discretionary money I’m doing this.

His speech was inspiring because of his last statements. The possibility of putting our educated minds to work and be able to come up with a real ideas that can help people. I mean, if people that don’t go to college can put people to work and make a difference, then imagine what people who do go to college can do… Any ideas?

I feel that his finishing statement was quickly marred by the exit song they played as he walked down the stage: “I Got a Feeling – Black Eyed Peas.” Oh well! At least I took a nice presidential helicopter boarding pic,

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