President Barack Obama announced the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative and delivered an uplifting speech to young people of color on Thursday. He spoke to the youths about the importance of “personal responsibility” and making good choices in life, and also admitted he made some of the same mistakes they are making today.
“We’ve got to help you knock down some of the barriers that you experience, that’s what we’re here for,” Obama said. “But you’ve got responsibilities too.”
And at hearing that common sense and inspiring message, MSNBC host Toure responded: “I cringe at that.”
“As if effort and excuses have been the problem,” Toure said Friday. “No, it’s been structural racism.”
“The accumulated impact of historic discrimination and the advantages of white privilege and the systems perpetuate all that,” he added. “Going into personal responsibility suggests you can make it if you try, and he knows it’s more complex than that.”
Instead, Toure said he wants Obama to “tell America to tear down the American Berlin Wall that keeps black men separated from opportunity.”
“That sort of big brother-in-chief would get us closer to the mountain top,” he said.
Watch the segment via MSNBC below: