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Barack Obama asks American to reject despair

Speaking to a packed hall, barely a mile from where the gunman opened fire last week, Obama invoked the names of the five police officers killed in the shooting rampage, describing details about each of their lives.



Houston: US President Barack Obama today asked Americans to "reject despair" and insisted that the country is not as divided as it seems by race and politics as he paid tributes to five police officers killed during a deadly sniper attack in Dallas.

"We see all this and it's hard not to think, sometimes, that the center won't hold and that things could get worse," he said.

"I understand. I understand how Americans are feeling. But Dallas, I'm here to say we must reject such despair. I'm here to insist that we are not as divided as we seem, and I know that because I know America. I know how far we've come against impossible odds."

Speaking to a packed hall, barely a mile from where the gunman opened fire last week, Obama invoked the names of the five police officers killed in the shooting rampage, describing details about each of their lives.

"All of it left us wounded and angry. And hurt. The deepest fault lines of our democracy have suddenly been exposed, perhaps even widened," Obama said at an interfaith service in Dallas, joined by several members of Congress, Vice President Joe Biden and his immediate predecessor George W Bush.

He spoke about the tensions between police and some of the minority communities they serve, saying recent events should inspire both sides to seek common ground--and that no institution, including police departments, is "entirely innocent."

Obama also said it's imperative not to let the "evil" of people like Dallas shooter Micah Xavier Johnson exacerbate divisions in this country.

"We know there is evil in this world. That's why we need police departments," he said. "But as Americans we can decide that people like this killer will ultimately fail, they will not drive us apart."

His speech comes a week after?a sniper killed five Dallas police officers, seemingly in response to?two high-profile killings of African American men by police: Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota.

The Dallas attack occurred at a peaceful protest of the two earlier killings, subsequently plunging the nation into turmoil over race, police violence, and gun rights.

Further protests have occurred, with?hundreds of Black Lives Matter protesters arrested?just this past weekend.

"Let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action", Obama said.

Bush said that Americans should "remember their shared commitments for common ideals" as a means of bridging divisions.

Bush said that Americans know we have one country and don't want the unity of grief and fear, but hope. 

From Zee News

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