I agree that there were several incredibly poignant, timely and historical points raised in Obama's speech today. The least of which not being how critical it is for Americans to stop denying the existence of problems of race, ethnicity and class/SE status in this country that has their roots in the principles on which this country was founded.<br><br>
The problem I do have, however, is that while a bit of generalization about race is generally appropriate in the context of discrimination legislation or corporate policy, building of a more collective, cooperative nation requires looking beyond the rhetoric that attempts to defines complex populations, e.g. "the black community." While I share many of Obama's views and disagree with almost as many, he no more represents me than does any other black American. And yet, many white Americans will, having heard or read his speech, feel that they understand what black people are "about;" in turn, many black Americans will feel they understand "white frustration."<br><br>
In my experience, I've found it to be expected, encouraged even, for whites, as a collective group, to have divergent opinions and perspectives, but that minority groups of all types are generally each reduced to a presumed homogeneity, based often on the loudest grievance <i>du jour.</i><br><br>
In my mind, the true growth will come when the complexities that exist within populations are accepted and employed as motivation for greater understanding, and not an excuse for perpetual ignorance on all sides. I'm hopeful that Obama's speech today will help galvanize Americans to start heading in that direction.