News / USA

    Obama Calls for Anti-Violence Measures

    President Barack Obama address the National Urban League Conference in New Orleans, Wednesday, July 25, 2012President Barack Obama address the National Urban League Conference in New Orleans, Wednesday, July 25, 2012
    x
    President Barack Obama address the National Urban League Conference in New Orleans, Wednesday, July 25, 2012
    President Barack Obama address the National Urban League Conference in New Orleans, Wednesday, July 25, 2012
    Kent Klein
    WHITE HOUSE — President Barack Obama says he will work with Congress to find ways to reduce violence in America.  The president spoke Wednesday, several days after 12 people were killed in a shooting rampage at a Colorado movie theater.
     
    Gun violence in America

    President Obama made some of his strongest comments yet on gun violence in a speech to the annual convention of the National Urban League, a civil rights organization representing African-Americans.

    Black communities across the country have suffered disproportionately from shooting deaths, although most of the victims of last week’s outburst in Colorado were white.

    The president said he will work with lawmakers from both parties to stop violence like the attack near Denver and the continuing threat of violent crime in many other cities.

    Obama said that while he supports Americans’ constitutional right to own guns, he believes gun ownership should be more tightly regulated. “But I also believe that a lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47’s belong in the hands of soldiers, not in the hands of criminals," he told the crowd. "That they belong on the battlefield of war, not on the streets of our cities.”

    The president spoke at the end of a four-day campaign trip to five states.  He began the tour earlier than planned, on Sunday, with a visit to the shooting victims and their families in Colorado.

    Support among African-Americans remains high for Obama, the first black U.S. president.  But the president decided not to speak at the convention of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) earlier this month, citing a scheduling conflict.  Vice President Joe Biden addressed the convention instead.

    Some African-American leaders have expressed disappointment that the president is not doing more to specifically help black Americans.

    Initiative to improve education

    At the Urban League convention in New Orleans, Louisiana, Obama announced that he will sign an executive order Thursday aimed at improving education for African-American students.

    “That is why tomorrow [Thursday] I am establishing the first-ever White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African-Americans.  So that every child has greater access to a complete and competitive education, from the time they are born all through the time they get a career,” Obama stated.

    Economy stalemate

    The president also addressed the economy, which surveys show is the main concern of U.S. voters.  He suggested that the November election will break the ongoing impasse between Democrats and Republicans, and determine the country’s direction.

    “What is holding us back is a stalemate in Washington, between two fundamentally different views of which path we should take as a country," Obama explained. "And it is up to the American people to decide which direction we should go.”

    Obama said the United States has all the ingredients to make the 21st century an “American Century,” like the 20th.

    You May Like

    Escalation of Media Crackdown in Turkey Heightens Concerns

    Critics see 'a new dark age' as arrests of journalists, closures of media outlets by Erdogan government mount

    Russia Boasts of Troop Buildup on Flank, Draws Flak

    Russian military moves counter to efforts to de-escalate tensions, State Department says

    Video Iraqis Primed to March on Mosul, Foreign Minister Says

    Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jaafari tells VOA the campaign will meet optimistic expectations, even though US officials remain cautious

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Mike from: Gold Coasrt
    July 26, 2012 8:33 AM
    hes a great oritor... the best ever in the US, but backing up is the challenge... for both!

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora