Former U.S. President Barack Obama has been rather outspoken about matters of race and discrimination since leaving office in 2016. During a recent interview, the former President spoke candidly about the impact of segregation and slavery on today's society.
“The truth of the matter is that the scars of slavery and Jim Crow never fully went away,” the former President said.
“They’re embedded in our institutions, they’re embedded in our economy and they’re embedded in our attitudes.”
As previously mentioned, this is not the first time Obama has discussed the topic of racism in recent months. While promoting his bestselling book, A Promised Land, he stated that he felt Black Americans deserved reparations because of the hardships faced during slavery and reconstruction.
“So, if you ask me theoretically: ‘Are reparations justified?’ The answer is yes,” he said.
"The wealth of this country [was] built on the backs of slaves."
Not to mention, the former President recently opened up about the first time he was called a racial slur. While speaking to rock star Bruce Springsteen, he said that he punched the person who said it in the face.
"When I was in school, I had a friend. We played basketball together. And one time we got into a fight and he called me a c---," he told Springsteen.
"And I remember I popped him in the face and broke his nose. And we were in the locker room."
Despite the past and present, former President Barack Obama believes there is light at the end of the tunnel. He said that the country would be able to move forward if it was willing to address the past.
“You know what the United States has never fully done a reckoning of our past. I am somebody who is an eternal optimist and insists on us recognizing the extraordinary progress in race relations that’s been made just in my lifetime,” he explained.
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