Striking a personal note, President Obama on Wednesday repeated his condemnation of the violent riots and looting in Baltimore Wednesday, calling the destruction of homes and local businesses “self-defeating” and saying the underlying causes of the unrest will take sustained effort to address.
“This is something that’s obviously important to me. The communities in Baltimore that are having these problems now are no different than the communities in Chicago where I first started working when I moved there as a community organizer,” Obama told Steve Harvey on the host’s morning radio show. “So I’ve seen this movie too many times before.”
The interview comes one day after Obama aggressively denounced the violence that erupted in Baltimore Monday night, which began hours after the funeral of a young black man, Freddie Gray, who sustained a fatal injury while in police custody. The president on Tuesday called those who participated “criminals and thugs.”
“[T]hese are our communities that get torn up. So whoever was working at the CVS, they right now are wondering if they’re going to get a paycheck,” he said. “…This kind of stuff is always self-defeating.”