President Barack Obama will soon meet with leaders in law enforcement and government as well as activists in an effort to find ways to stop the violence between police and minorities.
News of the meeting comes one day after the interfaith memorial in Dallas, where Obama, former President George W. Bush and other leaders paid their final respects to the five officers who were ambushed and killed less than a week ago.
The gunman, Micah Johnson, used a high powered rifle in a one-man mission to target and kill white officers. The area is still a crime scene, where detectives are poring over hours of body cam video.
Meanwhile, Dallas Police Chief David Brown, who is leading the investigation, is being hailed as the man who is holding this community together. Brushing aside such accolades, he’s publicly given all praise to “God’s grace and his sweet tender mercy.”
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Brown offered a moment of laughter at the service as he shared his love for the officers.
“So today, I’m going to pull out some Stevie Wonder for these families,” Brown said. “So families, close your eyes and just imagine me back in 1974 with an afro and some bell bottoms and wide collar.”
He then recalled the words from a Stevie tune, saying, “Now ain’t that loving you. I will be loving you, until the ocean covers every mountain high.”
Obama delivered a message of hope to the surviving officers and the more than 2,500 people who attended Tuesday’s memorial service honoring the five policemen who were gunned down at the end of the peaceful protest last Thursday.
Referencing scripture, Obama said, “Weeping may endure for a night, but I am convinced joy comes in the morning.”
The bulk of the president’s address honored the bravery of the fallen officers. But on his Tuesday morning flight to Dallas, he spoke to the families of Philando Castille and Alton Sterling. The two men’s deaths at the hands of police officers shocked the nation and prompted Thursday’s protest in Dallas.
“I see people who mourn for the five officers we lost, but also weep for the families of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. In this audience I see what’s possible. I see what’s possible when we recognize that we are one American family,” Obama said.
Vice President Joe Biden, former President George W. Bush, and their wives also attended.
Bush told the crowd, “Today the nation grieves, but those of us who love Dallas and call it home have had five deaths in the family.”
The president’s visit to Dallas also provided him with an opportunity to meet one-on-one with the victims’ families and to highlight recommendations from his task force on 21st century policing. The Dallas forces have already implemented some practices from that report.
Obama noted, “The murder rate here has fallen. Complaints of excessive force have been cut by 64 percent. The Dallas Police Department has been doing it the right way.”
Report via CBN News
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