In an interview on NPR, First Lady Michelle Obama shared her thoughts on the tragic murder of Trayvon Martin, saying that her “heart goes out to the parents” of the unarmed 17-year-old who was shot and killed by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.
“My heart goes out to the parents, because we all as parents understand the tragedy of that kind of loss, and I think that’s really the thing that most people connect to,” Obama said. “And it’s important for us not to lose sight of the fact that this is a family that’s grieving and there’s been a tremendous loss. And we all have to rally around that piece of it.”
The First Lady also made it clear that the “race” conversation can not end with Trayvon Martin:
“Talking is good. Conversations have to be forever,” she said. “You know, they can’t come in spits and starts when there’s an incident. I think we all need, as a country, to continue to talk about these issues, to understand our communities and the challenges that we face, which are different and unique depending upon where you live.”
“It’s all about, you know, continuing to get to know ourselves in a very diverse and complicated country that is America,” the First Lady added. “It is a wonderful place to live. But because it is so diverse, our challenges are complex. So there isn’t, you know, a one-shot solution to this. It is complicated. It takes time. It takes openness. It takes compassion. It takes patience. And it takes a lot of work. So we should all be ready to roll up our sleeves and keep doing that work.”
Listen to the full interview below, courtesy of NPR (interview begins around the 50 second mark):