July 14th, 2008
03:48 PM ET
15 years ago

Obama's NAACP speech to mark historic milestone

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/07/14/obama.naacp/art.obama.file.gi.jpg caption="Obama will address the NAACP Monday night."]
(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama's speech Monday night to the NAACP will mark a historic first: an African-American presidential nominee of a major party will be addressing the nation's oldest civil rights organization.

The speech by the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee in Cincinnati will also highlight a new generation of black leadership forged not in the civil rights battles of '60s and '70s, but during subsequent decades in which many African-Americans made great strides culturally, politically and economically, but many more remained economically disadvantaged.

Watch: Obama talks about personal responsibility

Obama himself - the son of a black father and a white mother - has acknowledged that his candidacy is in large part due to the struggles of previous generations of black leaders. But he has avoided being labeled an African-American candidate, saying he wants to appeal to all racial and ethnic groups. That has led some to question whether Obama is focusing enough on the needs of the black community.

The generational divide was in full display last week when the Rev. Jesse Jackson, an African-American leader who has long held a place on the American political stage, expressed his frustration with Obama in a comment after an interview on Fox News.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (183 Responses)
  1. Debby

    Why does everything Obama does have to be marked a historical milestone. I mean come on his speech he had to give defending Wright was like the Gettysburg address. This is getting so ridiculous with describing these speechs.

    July 14, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  2. Glad to be an Independent

    There is a generational divide. Talking and blaming whites for all the ills of the black community is wrong. Sure there are men in all races that are not steipping and taking their responsibllity as fathers, but the percentages in black communities are higher. I am young black male and I tired of people trying to silence people for speaking the truth. I worked very hard to get my college degree. I worked part-time. I went to school full-time at one school part-time in another school, and helped take care of my terminally ill grandfather. I am not even close to being perfect. I did my homework between 12AM-4PM in the morning. I was able to get 3-4 hours sleep each day. I would not a genious or a super smart person. I was just determined. Anyone could do the same thing that I did. I was fortunate not to make stupid decisions by fathering kids when I was not married. I was not involved in crime nor drugs. It is all about CHOICES. If you make the wrong CHOICES, then you will pay the price. We all make wrong choices. If someone tells you about a choice you made that was incorrect, then listen and take their advice. Maybe just maybe, you can make that CHANGE!!!!!

    July 14, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  3. Josh, NY

    Obama is all BS and no action.

    Who would you rather be stuck with in a foxhole behind enemy lines:

    1.. McCain

    2. Barack Hussein

    3. Hillary

    4. Michelle

    July 14, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  4. shannon

    blah blah blah...
    why is it that every time Obama opens his mouth...it is some sort of holy and historic event? He is just a man. He is not a god.

    In the words of Chris Matthews....

    "That was the best politics speech in the history of this country"...really...best ever??? please....

    July 14, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  5. Betty Holland

    As long as the media, and Obama himself, can keep this campaign focused on race, maybe everyone will ignore the fact that he is just a really bad candidate, totally unqualified to be president. As a friend of mine said – a rock star!

    July 14, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  6. Debra4Obama


    I just watched Sen. Obama speak to the NAACP. Simply outstanding. I have a question, though. I have watched as CNN broadcast his talks to Jewish groups, Latin groups, Women's groups, every kind of group imaginable but when he speaks to the NAACP you don't broadcast this. Is it my imagination or is there a something missing here? Is this not historic? Is it not newsworthy? Or is it just another one of your subliminal ways to diminish Sen. Obama? I find the lack of coverage irresponsible and quite telling.

    July 14, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  7. justiceinamerica

    America, America, why is it that Obama is so scrutinized? Its a wonder one doesn't know his shoe size and the size of his underwear. Its ridiculous how white america is going off about everything the man does, you people did not give a dam about the rest of white presidents in this country, in my life time the last person who raised so much controversy was Kennedy, with his matters and all, here it is a man who wants the best for all mankind, but preferably black american, because he knows the statistics in this country. Therefore its time, for justice and equality and pursuit of happiness according to the law. Forget those haters its expected, blacks in america have always been nil in the eyes of white knight, so these ugly things that are being mention is expected, Lastly to the one who stated she sick of " all about race" stuff, if you know your history this country was build by the hands of my ancestors with force from nation of racist who deem us as three fourth of a human being...


    July 14, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  8. Sandy

    Why do folks get so touchy on the subject of unwed fathers??? I truly don't understand why SOME men feel that it's okay to impregnate a woman and then leave because he 'can't deal with her anymore'. That's crazy and Mr. Obama is right on point for speaking about it.

    July 14, 2008 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
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