Obama: Cops Don’t Want to See Someone Choked to Death

Friday at his  year-end news conference before leaving for his annual holiday vacation in Hawaii, President Barack Obama in answering a question about this year’s racial tension between law enforcement and protests over the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases, said this “isn’t a situation where people feel good seeing somebody choked and dying.”

Obama said, “One of the great things about this job is you get to know the American people. I mean, you meet folks from every walk of life and every region of the country and every race and every faith. And what I don’t think is always captured in our political debates is, the vast majority of people are just trying to do the right thing. And people are basically good and have good intentions. Sometimes our institutions and our systems don’t work as well as they should. Sometimes, you know, you’ve got a police department that has gotten into bad habits over a period of time and hasn’t maybe surfaced some hidden biases that we all carry around. But if you offer practical solutions, I think people want to fix these problems. It’s not — this isn’t a situation where people feel good seeing somebody choked and dying. I think that troubles everybody. So, there’s an opportunity of all of us to come together and, you know, take a practical approach to these problems.”

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