In this video, President Obama, gave a speech at the launch of his “My Brother’s Keeper” mentoring program for at-risk kids, especially minorities. He criticized the lack of opportunities available to young minorities, the targeting of young minorities by police forces, and the role that America’s mass incarceration rate plays in perpetuating that whole cycle.
““By almost every measure, the life chances of the average young man of color is worse than his peers. Those opportunity gaps begin early, often at birth, and then compound over time, becoming harder and harder to bridge, making too many young men and women feel like no matter how hard they try, they may never achieve their dreams.”
The rate of killings by police officers, especially against young blacks and Latino, has become something of an epidemic in this country. President Obama vowed to keep working with minority youths after his presidency ends and acknowledged some hard truths about our nation.
“And that sense of unfairness and of powerlessness, of people not hearing their voices…the catalyst of those protests were the tragic deaths of young men and a feeling that law is not always applied evenly in this country. In too many places in this country, black boys and black men, Latino boys, Latino men — they experience being treated differently by law enforcement. In stops and in arrests and in charges and in incarcerations. The statistics are clear up and down the criminal justice system. There’s no dispute.”
Unfortunately, racism is still alive and well in America, perpetuated by conservatives wishing to preserve the old social order and by the billionaire class who require an exploitable underclass to squeeze money out of. We can only hope that President Obama takes some significant steps to right the unfair balance of power in America before it’s too late.
Watch it here:
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.