Obama: White Officers ‘In Fits and Starts Are Struggling to Understand’ Discrimination

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Saturday at the grand opening ceremony for the National Museum of African American History and Culture, while referencing the recent police shootings, President Barack Obama said, “Within the white communities, across the nation, we see the sincerity of law enforcement officers and officials, who in fits and starts are struggling to understand, and are trying to do the right thing.” Obama said, “A museum alone will not alleviate poverty in every inner city or every rural hamlet. It won’t eliminate gun violence from all our neighborhoods, or immediately ensure that justice is always color blind. It won’t wipe away every instance of discrimination in a job interview or a sentencing hearing or folks trying to rent an apartment. Those things are up to us. The decisions and choices we make. It requires speaking out and organizing and voting until our values are fully reflected in our laws and in our policies and our communities. But what this museum does show us is that even in the face of oppression, even in the face of unimaginable difficulty, America has moved forward.” “And so this museum provides context for the debates of our times,” he continued. “It illuminates them, and gives us