Barack Obama – Navigating America’s Racial Divide: The Daily Show

Barack Obama – Navigating America’s Racial Divide: The Daily Show

I’ve got
one more question for you. Um… this is
a personal question. -Yeah.
-It’s a little bit selfish. Um… I look up to you, because
we share a lot in common. We both have parents
who are black and white. Uh, both half African. South Side of Chicago.
South side of Africa. -Um…
-Similar. -In and around race…
-Yeah. when you are a person
who has a platform, -Right.
-when you are in a space where you are engaging
with people… it is often difficult… to navigate and skirt that line -Yeah.
-between speaking your mind -Right. -and sharing your…
your true opinions on race, whilst at the same time
not being seen to alienate some of the people
you are talking to. -Right. -You know, because
if you are a white person who’s speaking about race,
then you are just a person -who is interested in race.
-Right. If you are a person of color
who’s speaking about it, it’s, like, “Oh,
the black thing started again.” -(chuckles)
-So… the question I’ve
always wanted to know is, -Yeah.
-how did you navigate that? ‘Cause we watched you do it,
but I always wanted to know howyounavigated that
through your two terms. You know… my general theory uh, is that… if I was clear in my own mind about who I was,
comfortable in my own skin, and… had clarity about the way in which race continues to be… this powerful factor in
so many elements of our lives, but that it
is not the only factor in so many aspects of our lives, that, uh… we… have by no means overcome the legacies of slavery and Jim Crow and colonialism and racism, but that the progress we’ve made
has been real -and extraordinary.
-Mm-hmm. Uh, if I’m communicating
my genuine belief that, uh… those who are not… uh, subject to racism uh, can sometimes
have blind spots, or, uh, lack appreciation
of what it feels to be on the receiving end
of that, but that doesn’t mean that
they’re not open to learning and, uh… caring about
equality and justice, and that I can… uh… win them over, because there’s goodness
in the majority of people. If I… I always felt
that if I really knew that and I just communicated it
as clearly as I could, that I’d be okay. Um, another way
of saying this is there’s not been a time
in my public life or my presidency,
where I feel as if I have had to bite my tongue. There have been times in my
public life where I’ve said, how do I say this
diplomatically? How do I say this,
as you indicated, in a way that it’s received. -Yes.
-Right? So there, there… have been very few instances
where I’ve said, well, that was racist,
you are racist. There have been times
where I’ve said, you know, you might not
have taken into account… (both laughing) uh, the, uh… the ongoing legacy of,
of, uh, of racism in why we have so many black men incarcerated. And since I know that you believe
in the constitution, and believe in justice
and believe in liberty, um, how about if we try this? Now, some might say well, you’re not speaking fully
truth to power -because of that diplomacy.
-Yes. But, you know, I don’t think that, um, trying to appeal to the better
angels of our nature, as Lincoln put it, uh, is somehow compromise. There may be times where… uh, you just have to
call things out and name names. But the challenge we face today, when it comes to race, uh, is… rarely the overt, Klansman-style, uh, uh, racism, and typically has more to do with the fact that, you know, people got other stuff
they want to talk about, and it’s sort of uncomfortable. And it’s… somebody not getting called back
for an interview, -although it’s never explicit.
-Mm-hmm. Or it’s, you know, who gets the TV acting job? The actress who doesn’t quite
look the part, and what does that mean. In-in that environment, where you’re
not talking necessarily about cut-and dried, uh, racist behavior, but rather
about the complex ways in which society is working
these issues through, uh, you know,
trying to reach folks in ways that they can hear, I think, is, uh, is important. And, I would add, everybody’s got a different role
to play. Um, you know, if Chris Rock’s
doing standup, then there is a benefit to him doing something
that is different from the president of the United
States doing something. For one thing, you know, he doesn’t have to, uh,
edit his language (laughing):
quite as carefully, because I am still subject to, you know, some restraints… You still got your
last few days. …on-on those seven words -George Carlin talked about.
-Yes. See, I-I can’t use those, uh, as a general proposition, because a lot of children
are watching. I try to comport myself in a way that, uh, my mother would approve of. Well, I just want to say
thank you so much for being on the show. Thank you for being
an inspiration, and, most importantly,
thank you for giving me an opportunity to
see what I would look like after eight years of the
toughest job in the world. You know,
I-I will say that I resent how young
and good looking you are, ’cause, uh, I used to think
of myself in those terms, and, uh, it’s been downhill
for quite some time. -Thank you, sir.
-Thank you, man. -Thank you very much.
-Appreciate it.


  1. Nobility and positioned Power of voice and having a voice in a former states Man. I respect him to the ends of our era. Wish I could meet him.

  2. fuck Obama look what he did in Libya and in Africa…… Obama is a bitch ass liar….. fuck Obama fuck obama

  3. How the fuck you are sitting? What you wanna show? Coolness? Look like asshole sitting like this in front of him. But I'm sure Americans do no have mentality that comes till here. Lol.

  4. That short period of times where the world actually respect US, not they are just trying to frighten everyone.

  5. Every decent country would want to have him as their president. He's the kind of a man who knows what to say and what to do and how to do it.

  6. Somebody show this to Trump how a president should act in general and stop the BS he's doing right now

  7. I'm learning Something in the politics which is always appreciate what you have instead of complaining just look at Obama people used to hate him now Trump as President they adore Obama in a way that they miss him in White house ………He reminds me of Nelson Mandela though.

  8. Let's be honest and frank. President Obama 's beating around the bush style of addressing sensitive issues, is boring and borders on timidity and uneasiness, especially when addressing a white audience. Trump maybe messy with his choice of words, but he exudes self confidence,unlike Obama.

  9. That's how a great man speak! He think before his words come out unlike someone who lashes out words without thinking it might hurt someone or stir something. Trevor, I love watching your show. This is by far the best one.

  10. This what I like about Obama he think before he speak we all know he’s out hero thanks Trevor great job next time put your foot on the floor bro

  11. I love watching videos of 43 and 44 speaking. I didn’t agree with either 100% and less as they went on their 8yrs. I miss when presidents spoke like actual statesmen. The value of respect is showing its reality today

  12. Fun Fact! When you watch speeches or interviews with Obama with German subtitles, you will usually get clear and good translations. If you apply the automatic translation to speeches by Trump, only confused gibberish comes out … interesting. Greets from Cologne 😉

  13. Awesome president. He just unfortunately let himself get blackmailed (most probably) into messing up Libya illegally and converting it from a prosperous country into a failed slave trading sand holes.

  14. Obamas general theory is to always remind the country that racism is something that should always be talked about

  15. Hmmm i wonder what he means. Theres no certainty in evrthing he said. Evrythjng he said is on the fence trying hard not to offend anybody. In the end it sounds presidential but does nothing. Nada zero

  16. Obama the white supremacist collaborator , who fooled the black committee's once but never again. He did more for gays than black people. But what else would you except from from a descended of a black slaver, who sold other black people into slavery for profit . No more white supremacy collaborators, now we are aware of the Judas goat.

  17. Trevor is seated cross legged u may think he is the president, this shows the confort he has talking to a down to earth person

  18. Mr President Obama you are a born gentleman and a respectful person even trevor is scared to crack a joke not that u would mind

  19. The reason why Barack Obama doesn't brag about his accomplishments is because he has never accomplished anything he is a pathetic little man

  20. Only one thing I didn't like in this video: I think that if the POTUS or any other President reaches to me for a handshake I could never ever keep my legs crossed while giving my hand to him.

  21. I personally think these two are amongst the most intellectual people in the word. Seeing them together in such a conversation is like a dream come true. Presidents in the making

  22. Fuck obama he used us to get in office then turned his back on us.. In the obama era my family lost money in the trump era we went from a 7 figure family to a 9 figure family.

  23. Trevor should have gave some respect keeping his feet on ground instead keeping on other leg pointing towards president sitting side…I like Trevor just expressing my opinion

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