Obama: Racial Discrimination in Law Enforcement Has a ‘Corrosive Effect on America’

WASHINGTON (TheBlaze/AP) — President Barack Obama said the mistrust of law enforcement that was exposed after the fatal police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, has a corrosive effect on all of America, not just on black communities.

Image source: YouTube/The White House
Image source: YouTube/The White House

Obama said Saturday night that “in too many communities around the country a gulf of mistrust exists” between law enforcement and citizens, which harms places that need law enforcement the most.

“Too many young men of color feel targeted by law enforcement,” Obama said. “Guilty of walking while black, driving while black, judged by stereotypes that fuel fear and resentment and hopelessness.”

Obama added that racial discrimination across the U.S. criminal justice system “has a corrosive effect on America,” makes people reluctant to go to the police, and “scars the hearts of our children.”

The fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in August sparked days of violent protests and racial unrest in predominantly black Ferguson. Brown was black and unarmed. The police officer who shot him was white.

Here’s video of Obama’s remarks at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s annual awards dinner in Washington. The relevant portion begins at the 49-minute mark: