Following up on sentiments first reported by the New York Times some days ago, today Obama used an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos to urge those protesting over an anticipated grand jury verdict in the death of Michael Brown of Ferguson , Missouri, to keep the peace.
“This is a country that allows everybody to express their views. Allows them to peacefully assemble, to protest actions that they think are unjust. But using any event as an excuse for violence is contrary to rule of law and contrary to who we are,” Obama told ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos during an interview conducted today in Las Vegas.
The remarks are in line with sentiments attributed to Obama in a New York Times item dated November 16.
According to the Rev. Al Sharpton, who has appeared frequently in St. Louis with the Brown family and delivered a speech at Mr. Brown’s funeral, Mr. Obama “was concerned about Ferguson staying on course in terms of pursuing what it was that he knew we were advocating. He said he hopes that we’re doing all we can to keep peace.”