What the President Should Have Said
“Are you willing, tonight, to condemn white supremacists, and militia groups, and to say that they need to stand down, and not add to the violence that we’ve seen in these cities, as we saw in Kenosha, and as we’ve seen in Portland?”
“Sure, I’m willing to do that.”
“Then do it.”
“White supremacy, and any other ideology that believes one race of human beings is better than another, or that one race is corrupted or inherently lesser, is an abomination before God, an abomination before the United States of America, and an insult to everything this great nation has accomplished. These groups need to stand down, but they also need to stop talking. Stop talking about your hateful ideas. Stop talking about me. I would rather lose this election than win it with your support.
This country has a troubled, complicated past with race, and it’s shameful. But we’ve made progress, and we’re going to continue to make progress, because that’s what this nation is about. The Founding Fathers set forth an ideal that they themselves couldn’t fully realize: all men are created equal. We inherited their mistakes, but we also inherited their vision, and each day we work to realize it. We know we won’t get it exactly right, no matter how hard we try, but we trust in future generations to build on what we do, just as the Founding Fathers trusted in us.
So if you’re listening tonight believing that the “real” America is the “white” America, believing that anyone who isn’t white is “lesser” or “criminal,” then turn off this debate right now. You have no place in our political discourse, and you have no place in the world we’re building. Americans have worked, and fought, and bled to make a place of opportunity for all. We’re stubbornly determined to do better, and we’re not stopping until we close our eyes for the last time, knowing that our children will do even better than we did.
White supremacists, you’re not dragging us down with you. We’re not going backwards. Stand down. Stand aside.”