President Obama mourned 131 fallen law enforcement officers today during Police Week ceremonies in Washington D.C.
During a speech at the National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service, Obama praised the fallen officials, describing them as “heroes.”
He specifically addressed the recent death of New York Police Department Officer Brian Moore, shot and killed earlier this month.
He also referred to the death of two other NYPD officers in December who were shot execution-style at the height of the national controversy surrounding Ferguson, Missouri.
In his speech, Obama discussed the responsibility the United States government has to solve problems in communities and to assist police officers in their efforts to keep the peace.
“We cannot erase every darkness or danger from the duty that you’ve chosen,” he said. “We can offer you the support you need to be safer. We can make the communities you care about and protect safer as well.”
He also suggested that political leaders needed to work harder to address issues of poverty, racism, and class division to make their job easier.
“We can do everything we have to do to combat the poverty that plagues too many communities in which you have to serve,” he said. “We can work harder as a nation to heal the riffs that still exist in some places between law enforcement and the people you risk your lives to protect.”