Former President Barack Obama said over the weekend he hopes his post-presidency impact includes molding "a million young Barack Obamas." Obama's comments came Sunday during a conference in Japan.
What did Obama say?
According to the Washington Examiner, the discussion that precipitated Obama's comments centered on the Obama Foundation's efforts to help young people worldwide become digitally engaged.
He said his goal is to create mini-Obamas to drive human progress.
"If I could do that effectively, then — you know — I would create a hundred or a thousand or a million young Barack Obamas or Michelle Obamas. Or, the next group of people who could take that baton in that relay race that is human progress," Obama said.
Obama cited Saturday's "March For Our Lives" gun control rally in Washington as an example of what happens when digitally engaged young people make a real difference, quipping that "a lot of our problems are caused by old men."
What else did Obama say?
In addition to ripping on men and speaking of his desire to mold Americans after himself, Obama spoke of his larger desire to bring more substance to civil discourse.
"One of the things we're going to be spending time on, through the Foundation, is finding ways in which we can study this phenomenon of social media and the Internet to see are there ways in which we can bring people from different perspectives to start having a more civil debate and listen to each other more carefully," Obama said.
According to the Associated Press, Obama has been on a weeklong tour that included stops in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, in addition to Japan. During his visits, he met with current and former state leaders and discussed the work the Obama Foundation plans to do.