Racial Divide in United States Defies Easy Change - NYTimes.com: WASHINGTON — The tragic shooting of a black teenager by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo., has sparked an intense debate about the state of race relations in America, but there’s little indication much will change.
Predictably, Barack Obama, the first black president, is at the center of the debate. Should he speak out more forcefully? Should he go to Ferguson? Is this a teaching moment?
This recalls the expectation that his election would magically transform an issue that has plagued the United States for hundreds of years. Mr. Obama did not run as a black candidate; had he done so, he would have lost. In office, he has given speeches and promoted initiatives on race, but he has not governed as a black president.