I applaud Benjamin Davis for his sensitive and thoughtful op-ed column on July 25, “Little comfort in Obama’s remarks on the Martin case.” In the wake of the acquittal of George Zimmerman, a plethora of responses has arisen to a persistent and troubling racial division in our nation.
As elite African Americans with almost identical backgrounds of privilege — both are professors, attorneys, and Harvard law school graduates — President Obama and Mr. Davis had public reactions to the Martin case that diverged surprisingly.
The President dwelt solely on his memories of personal discrimination. Unfortunately, disturbing memories of unfair treatment are lasting, especially for sensitive young people who are totally undeserving of such humiliation.
Yet Mr. Obama squandered his chance to speak out boldly against the myriad racial injustices that Americans of color continue to face every single day, subtle or not.
Mr. Davis, on the other hand, is to be applauded for taking the time and effort to express publicly a social conscience that compels him to articulate the many national racial priorities that have yet to be achieved.