I didn't think it was possible to respect Malala Yousafzai even more than I already do, but when she appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, the 16-year-old Nobel Peace Prize nominee proved she is humble, kind-hearted, and able to make a lamb out of a lion like Stewart.
Malala is the remarkable Pakistani teen who was shot in the head and neck by the Taliban after speaking out against the group for prohibiting women in the country from becoming educated. And even after enduring an assassination attempt, she is unwilling to hide or censor her opinions -- although the message she said she'd pass to her Talib shooters might surprise you.
You would think a young person who was almost killed might carry inside of her a great deal of anger. Malala even admitted she was in absolute shock when she learned members of the Taliban had put out a death threat against her since, she reasoned, who would want to kill a 14-year-old girl?
But despite having her innocence stolen from her, Malala seems to have forgiven members of the Taliban. She says she would tell her gunman how important education is and that she wants education for their children, as well. It's amazing to think a teen girl can be this strong and well-adjusted, and I hope her parents know what a wonderful job they did raising her.
The audience exploded with applause after nearly every one of Malala's statements because, honestly, each thing she said was more inspirational than the last. Even Stewart was taken aback and asked Malala if she would mind if he adopted her.
Who can blame him? I hope millions of teen girls read Malala's new book, I Am Malala, and that they look up to her as a real symbol of female strength and empowerment.
What do you think of Malala's appearance on The Daily Show?
Image via The Daily Show With John Stewart