I love this post by Gara LaMarche, President of Atlantic Philanthropies about Obama's speech to the NAACP. So often the media's portrayal of the president's relationship with the African American community has been slanted because the media doesn't understand the African American community (to speak on broad terms). I also love that Mr. LaMarche's foundation just began to use a social justice lens for its grantmaking. From GaraLog: I was in the audience when President Obama spoke to the NAACP the other night. It seemed like that would be a good place to be when the first black President of the United States spoke to the leading black organization -- wellspring of the long struggles against lynching, Jim Crow and segregation -- on its 100th anniversary. And it was. He delivered the goods, as he almost always does.
The part of the speech that got the most attention, particularly in the New York Times story, was where Obama spoke as a black man to other black parents and grandparents:
We've got to say to our children, yes, if you're African American, the odds of growing up amid crime and gangs are higher. Yes, if you live in a poor neighborhood, you will face challenges that somebody in a wealthy suburb does not have to face. But that's not a reason to get bad grades -- (applause) -- that's not a reason to cut class -- (applause) -- that's not a reason to give up on your education and drop out of school. (Applause.) No one has written your destiny for you. Your destiny is in your hands -- you cannot forget that. That's what we have to teach all of our children. No excuses. (Applause.) No excuses.
Read the rest here.