David Brooks: Obama's Trayvon Statement 'a Symphony'

DAVID BROOKS, NEW YORK TIMES: Yeah. It seemed superficially unimportant, but it's important to remember race is his first subject, as it would be if you had a black father and a white mother. And all the mental habits, he breached all the other issues, grow out of the way he framed race and the way he started thinking about race. His tendency to do, "On the one hand, on the other;" his desire to reconcile opposites; his ability to see different points of view. All the stuff we've come to see him apply to every other issue, it started with race. And I thought this speech was one of the highlights of the presidency. I thought it was a symphony of indignation, professionalism, executive responsibility, personal feeling. It had all these different things woven together, I thought beautifully. But it's important to remember, race is how he thinks.

DAVID GREGORY, HOST: But again, I come back because I want to make sure to represent that other side as well. Some conservatives have said, "Look, this was the wrong moment to inject race into the trial," their view, and for the president to speak out in this way.

BROOKS: Yes. I guess I would disagree with them. I think if the young man had been a white kid and the older guy had been a black guy, it would be a different verdict. And the president said that, and I think that happens to be true.

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