Yesterday [July 14] President Barack Obama took to the platform at Disney Media Network’s town hall “The President and The People: A National Conversation” to expound on race relations in the United States in a commercial-free simulcast across all ABC and ESPN platforms on television and online.
Questioned by Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn on the challenges police face in protecting communities where police face high crime rates, pressing
the president to focus on the topic.
“It is absolutely true that the murder rate in the African-American community is way out of whack compared to the general population,” Obama said. “And both the victims and the perpetrators are Black, young Black men.
“The single greatest cause of death for young Black men between the ages of 18 and 35 is homicide. And that’s crazy. That is crazy.”
Following this remark, the President went on to reiterate his theme following the country’s elevated conversation on race.
“We can’t put the burden on police alone,” he began. “It is going to require investments in those communities. It’s going to require making sure the schools work. It’s going to require having after-school programs. It’s going to require making sure that as young people start getting into high school that they are given a path for a productive life.”
In the midst of the whirlwind of political and social turmoil worldwide, President Obama managed to stay the course of social justice throughout the conversation, maintains a focus specifically on relations between police and communities of color.
“I think it’s important for us to also understand that the phrase ‘Black Lives Matter’ simply refers to the notion that there’s a specific vulnerability for African Americans that needs to be addressed,” he said. “It’s not meant to suggest that other lives don’t matter. It’s to suggest that other folks aren’t experiencing this particular vulnerability.”