Obama: Trayvon 'Could Have Been Me'
All black men know the feeling, says the president
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 19, 2013 1:36 PM CDT
President Obama pauses as he speaks about Trayvon Martin.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

(Newser) – When the Trayvon Martin shooting took place, President Obama made headlines by saying that Trayvon could have been his son. Today, he took it further: "Trayvon could have been me 35 years ago," he said during an unscheduled stop in the White House briefing room to talk about the case. Some highlights, as noted by USA Today, the New York Times, and the Washington Post:

  • “I think it’s important to recognize that the African-American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that—that doesn’t go away. There are very few African-American men in this country who haven’t had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store. That includes me.”

  • "I don’t want to exaggerate this, but those sets of experiences inform how the African-American community interprets what happened one night in Florida. And it’s inescapable for people to bring those experiences to bear.”
  • But: "I don't want us to lose sight of the fact that things are getting better."
  • Referring to his daughters and their generation: "They’re better than we are, they’re better than we were, on these issues," and that should instill confidence that things will change.
  • He asked all Americans to do some "soul-searching," asking themselves, "Am I wringing as much bias out of myself as I can."

View 2 more images
More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Obama: 'Trayvon Could Have Been Me' is...
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 961 comments
Jul 21, 2013 3:41 PM CDT
Well I'm glad Obama talking about race relations in America opened up how truly raciallydivided America is! Thanks Newser for bringing these same people that claim they are not prejudice or bias to the forefront!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jul 21, 2013 3:18 PM CDT
Obama could have been De'Marquise Elkins.
Jul 21, 2013 11:06 AM CDT
(R) 2016 Gov. RICK PERRY Report: How many Asian-American residents in San Francisco and Oakland get robbed, get beaten, and get gun-down and killed by Obama's people ? The local police can answer your question. The Asian-American community just keep quiet, because they are the pro-Democrats and listen what Rep. Nancy Pelosi to tell them what to do, how to vote for Democrats and keep the community silent.