We’ve all heard the phrase “You play like a girl!” yelled across a field or a playground before, right? It’s insulting, isn’t it? Our culture has lead us to believe that playing ball is a boy’s game. Classic movies and cartoons such as The Sandlot and Recess are prime examples of why kids today still tend to believe that this is true.

Not thirteen-year-old Ayla Ludlow from Massachusetts. She decided to put her foot down when teased by her brother that “boys are so much better at soccer than girls!” This irked Ayla, like it would any other women, and drove her to write the president insisting he address this issue.

Letter from Ayla to President Obama about Women's Soccer.

Four months later, little did she know, Ayla was going to prove her brother wrong...

An Invitation to the White House

This past October, President Obama invited Ayla to the White House to read her letter and introduce her to the U.S. Women’s Soccer team that she so deeply admires!

After Ayla's speech, President Obama took to the podium to congratulate the team for their victory and, continuing Ayla's sentiments, discuss a prominent issue - Women in Sports.

Obama spoke passionately on the team's role in inspiring and changing stereotypes of women and girls in sports. Obama said: "They've inspired millions of girls to dream bigger, and by the way, inspired millions of boys to look at girls differently, which is just as important."

He then went on to say: "Playing like a girl means being the best... That's what American women do. That's what American girls do. That's why we celebrate this team. They've done it with class. They've done it with the right way. They've done it with excitement. They've done with style. We are very, very proud of them."

Obama closed his speech with this memorable quote: "This team taught all of America’s children that 'playing like a girl' means you're a badass,” and we couldn’t agree with him more.

Thanks Ayla, for showing us all how badass it can be to play like a girl!

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