Michelle Obama said in a new interview that Black people live with a constant fear of discrimination and injustice and that Black Lives Matter activists are “taking to the streets” not because they want to, but “because they have to.”
In an interview with “CBS This Morning” that will air Monday, the former first lady said there’s still a long road ahead after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted last month in the murder of George Floyd.
“We know that while we’re all breathing a sigh of relief over the verdict, there’s still work to be done,” Mrs. Obama said. “And so we, we can’t sort of say, ‘Great. That happened. Let’s move on.’ I know that people in the Black community don’t feel that way because many of us still live in fear as we go to the grocery store, or worry about our — walking our dogs, or allowing our children to get a license.”
Mrs. Obama said she worries about her two daughters being out in public and the assumptions people could make about them because of the color of their skin.
“Every time they get in a car by themselves, I worry about what assumption is being made by somebody who doesn’t know everything about them — the fact that they are good students and polite girls, but maybe they’re playing their music a little loud. Maybe somebody sees the back of their head and makes an assumption,” she said.
“The innocent act of getting a license puts fear in our hearts.”So I think we have to talk about it more,” she continued. “And we have to ask our fellow citizens to listen a bit more, and to believe us, and to know we don’t wanna be out there marchin’. I mean, all those Black Lives Matter kids, they’d rather not have to worry about this. They’re taking to the streets because they have to. They’re trying to have people understand that we’re real folks, and the fear that many have of so many of us is irrational. And it’s based on a history that is just, it’s sad and it’s dark, and it’s time for us to move beyond that.”