Obama to NAACP: No Excuses for Failure

July 17, 2009

(ChattahBox)— President Barack Obama gave a rousing speech on Thursday, in honor of the 100th anniversary celebration of the NAACP. Obama delivered a message of hope and issued a challenge of tough love to Black Americans not to allow the barriers of racial discrimination to get in the way of their dreams and accomplishments.

The President spoke before an excited crowd at a New York hotel, as the first Black president of the United States. The President spoke in the dramatic style of a Baptist Minister, wowing the crowd with great oration and plenty of substance.

He spoke of the dark days of racial segregation of the “Jim Crow” period in our history, as barriers overcome by our great civil rights leaders. “But make no mistake: the pain of discrimination is still felt in America,” said the President.

Recognizing that today’s barriers to Black Americans are different Obama said, “The question, then, is where do we direct our efforts. What steps do we take to overcome these barriers? How do we move forward in the next one hundred years?”

“What is required to overcome today’s barriers is the same as was needed then, the same commitment. The same sense of urgency. The same sense of sacrifice,” the President said.

He advised Black parents to push their children to succeed in school and take time away from television and video games. The President challenged Black Americans to expand their dreams beyond becoming a famous athlete, like NBA star LeBron James or a rap music star.

“We have to say to our children, Yes, if you’re African American, the odds of growing up amid crime and gangs are higher. Yes, if you live in a poor neighborhood, you will face challenges that someone in a wealthy suburb does not. But that’s not a reason to get bad grades,” said President Obama.

“No one has written your destiny for you. Your destiny is in your hands and don’t you forget that,” added President Obama.

The President spoke of his own upbringing and how his young mother constantly challenged him to excel in school. “She took no lip and taught me right from wrong,” he said.

The President’s message of personal responsibility combined with recognizing the challenges ahead for Black Americans resonated with the crowd.

Ending his speech, he defined the past and present mission of the NAACP, “The NAACP was not founded in search of favors. The NAACP was founded on a firm notion of justice; to cash the promissory note of America that says all our children, all God’s children, deserve a fair chance in the race of life,” said the President to applause.

The President stressed the importance of education as the key to success and overcoming barriers, as he prepared this week to shore up the community college system.



One Response to “Obama to NAACP: No Excuses for Failure”

  1. Posts about Barack Obama as of July 17, 2009 » The Daily Parr on July 17th, 2009 8:44 am

    […] felt in America,” the president said in honoring the organization’s 100th convention. Obama to NAACP: No Excuses for Failure – chattahbox.com 07/17/2009 (ChattahBox)— President Barack Obama gave a rousing speech on […]

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