It was arguably one of the most significant speeches of Obama’s presidency.
“For black men in the 1940s and 1950s, the threat of violence, the constant humiliations, large and small, the gnawing doubts born of a Jim Crow culture that told you every day you were somehow inferior, the temptation to shrink from the world, to accept your place, to avoid risks, to be afraid, was necessarily strong,” Obama told a cheering crowd of about 10,000 during his commencement address at Morehouse, an all-male historically black college.
“There are some things, as black men, we can only do for ourselves,” Obama said. “There are some things, as Morehouse Men, that you are obliged to do for those still left behind,” the president said. “As graduates – as Morehouse Men – you now wield something even more powerful than the diploma you are about to collect. And that’s the power of your example.”