Just moments ago, President Obama held a press conference in the Rose Garden to introduce his pick to head up the International Monetary Fund. At the end of the press conference introducing Darthmouth President Jim Yong Kim, a reporter asked the President to weigh in on the Trayvon Martin case and Florida’s ‘Stand Your Ground Laws.’
The President offered a measured, thoughtful response. While he wouldn’t comments on the law and cannot directly share his thoughts because he would be, in effect, taking sides, President Obama had a few words for Trayvon’s parents.
Taking only one question, the President said:
“Obviously this is a tragedy. I can only imagine what these parents are going through. When I think about this boy I think about my own kids and I think every parent in America should be able to understand why it is absolutely imperative that we investigate every aspect of this and that everybody pulls together, federal, state and local to figure out exactly how this tragedy happened.
I’m glad that not only the Justice Department is looking into it, I understand now that the governor of the state of Florida has formed a task force to investigate what is taking place.
I think all of us have to do some soul searching to figure out how something like this happened. That means that we examine the laws and the context for what happened as well as the specifics of the incident.
But my main message is to the parents of Trayvon. If I had a son he would look like Trayvon. I think they are right to expect that all of us as Americas are going to take this with the seriousness it deserves and we will get to the bottom of exactly what happened.”
In Sanford, FL Thursday night, Rev. Al Sharpton and Trayvon Martin’s parents led a rally of nearly 30,000 people from all over the country to protest the teen’s murder.