"There's still work to be done."

By Christopher Luu
May 07, 2021 @ 4:43 pm
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After the conviction of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd, many people seemed to feel like strides towards facing racism in America were just starting, though just as many people wanted to feel a sense of closure. One of those people is Michelle Obama, who appeared on CBS This Morning with Gayle King to speak about race, social justice, and the trial. Obama said that Americans can't simply "move on" and that injustice continues to be something that people are facing. She noted that she feels it herself and fears that her daughters, Sasha and Malia, may be facing racism as they live their lives.

"We can't sort of say, 'Great, that happened, let's move on,'" Obama told King. "I know that people in the Black community don't feel that way, because many of us still live in fear as we go to the grocery store or worry about walking our dogs or allowing our children to get a license."

She elaborated, saying that she worries every time that they go out by themselves, because not everyone knows who they are or will take the time to learn about them. Instead, she notes, people can make assumptions about them based on how they look and she fears that it could put both her daughters in danger.

"They're driving, but every time they get in a car by themselves, I worry about what assumption is being made by somebody who doesn't know everything about them: The fact that they are good students and polite girls, but maybe they're playing their music a little loud. Maybe somebody sees the back of their head and makes an assumption," she said. "I, like so many parents of Black kids ... the innocent act of getting a license puts fear in our hearts. So, I think we have to talk about it more and we have to ask our fellow citizens to listen a bit more and to believe us and to know that we don't want to be out there marching."

Obama also opened up about the importance of the continued Black Lives Matter protests, saying that they're necessary to bring attention to police misconduct and racism.

"All those Black Lives Matter kids, they'd rather not have to worry about this. They're taking to the streets because they have to," she said. "They're trying to have people understand that we're real folks. And the fear that many have of so many of us is irrational and it's based on a history that is sad and it's dark, and it's time for us to move beyond that."