Former first lady Michelle Obama said recently that white Americans are devastating communities by “running” from neighborhoods when black Americans and immigrants move in.
“I want to remind white folks that y’all were running from us. And you’re still running,” she said Tuesday during an Obama Foundation summit in Chicago, recounting her personal experience. “We were doing everything we were supposed to do — and better. But when we moved in, white families moved out.”
According to The Chicago Sun-Times, Mrs. Obama claimed white families never had to leave and blamed their departures on damaging neighborhoods further.
“There were no gang fights, there were no territorial battles. Yet one by one, they packed their bags, and they ran from us. And they left communities in shambles,” she said. “I can’t make people not afraid of black people. I don’t know what’s going on. I can’t explain what’s happening in your head,” she said.
Mrs. Obama added that black Americans will have to step up to address discrimination, claiming white Americans won’t help.
“[W]e can’t do it for them, because they’re broken. Their brokenness in how they see us is a reflection of this brokenness. And you can’t fix that. All you can do is the work,” she said.
“Being the first black first family gave America and the world [the chance] to see the truth of who we are as black people, as others. That we are just as, and often times better than, many of the people who doubt us. But our stories don’t get told,” she said.
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