The violence in Ferguson caused President Barack Obama to use language more forceful than he has in the past about race, breaking taboos about the issue for Americans — many of whom hoped that having a black president in the White House would mean scenes like these would be a thing of the past.
Violence erupted in Ferguson the night the nation learned that Darren Wilson, a white police officer, would not be indicted for fatally shooting Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager. In appealing for calm, Obama said the situation in Ferguson speaks to broader challenges still facing the nation.
“We need to recognize this is not an issue just for Ferguson," he said. "This is an issue for America. We have made enormous progress in race relations over the course of the last several decades. I have witnessed this in my own life, and to deny this progress is to deny America’s capacity for change. But what is also true is that there are still problems, and communities of color are not making these problems up.”
Analysts say it is not the pain and anger alone of the demonstrators that prompted Obama to speak more openly about race relations. With only two years left in his term, they say, Obama has less to lose by taking the conversation on race relations a step further.
“The political risk, obviously, he’s not running for re-election anymore, so that’s sort of mitigated," said Daniella Gibbs Leger of the Center for American Progress, a former senior aide to the president. "Is there other types of risk? Always, whenever you’re talking about race in this country. But I also think that it goes beyond the political risk, and it’s something that’s very personal to him.”
Obama has spoken passionately on race issues before. In 2012, when black teenager Trayvon Martin was shot and killed in Florida in another racially charged case, the president said Martin could have been his son.
This time, the president warned that inaction could lead to more tension and violence.
“Those who are only interested in focusing on the violence and just want the problem to go away need to recognize that we do have work to do here and we shouldn’t try to paper it over,” he said.
Michael Fauntroy, an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at Howard University in Washington, said that while Obama’s remarks on race were more forceful than before, he questioned whether the president was forceful enough.
“What happened in Ferguson, Missouri, and the aftermath that happened is something that the president was sort of forced to comment on," he said. "So, yes, that is true, he is breaking a taboo. But I hope that now that the taboo is broken, that he will actually do something with it.”
When Obama took office, there were hopes among many Americans, both black and white, that America’s race problems would largely go away.
Events in Ferguson show that resolving hundreds of years of racial strife will take more than one man and one presidency.
1.forceful adj. 强有力的；有说服力的；强烈的
The Lord gifted him with the power of forceful speech.
2.taboo n. 禁忌；忌讳
Alcohol is a taboo in this tribe.
3.indict vt. [法]控告，起诉
The grand jury indicts or refuses to indict accused persons.
4.enormous adj. 巨大的；庞大的
He paid an enormous sum.
5.prompt v. 促使；导致；鼓励
Japan's recession has prompted consumers to cut back on buying cars...
6.passionately adv. 热情地，激昂地
He was passionately in love with her.
7.inaction n. 不活动；不作为
He is bitter about the inaction of the other political parties.
1.In appealing for calm, Obama said the situation in Ferguson speaks to broader challenges still facing the nation.
He appealed for his parents' forgiveness.
2.Analysts say it is not the pain and anger alone of the demonstrators that prompted Obama to speak more openly about race relations.
在英语中，我们常用It is／was… who/that结构来突出强调句子的某一成分(一般是句子中主语，宾语或状语)。在这个句型中，it没有词汇意义，只是引出被强调的成分 。如果被强调的成分是表示人的词，用who或that来连接都可以 。如果是其它成分，则一律用that来连接 。
E.g. It is my mother who／that cooks every day.
E.g. It was yesterday that Tom passed in the maths exam．
e.g. It is I who am right．
e.g. It is he who is wrong．
e.g. It is the students who are lovely．
2．即使被强调成分是句子中的时间状语，地点状语，原因状语等，也不能用when，where, because，要用 that。
E.g. It was after the war was over that Einstein was able to come back to his research work again .
E.g. It was in front of the bank that the old lady was robbed．
E.g. It was because of the heavy rain that he came late．
It was from him，his chemistry teacher，that Paul learned to watch carefully in class．
It was he that helped me yesterday. It was me that he helped yesterday.
lt was the things and people that they remembered that they were talking about．
三、区分定语从句和强调句型某些定语从句和强调句型形式差不多，容易混淆。如果去掉it is／ was ...that句子仍然通顺成立，则为强调句型，不成立不通顺，则为定语从句 。
E.g. It was three years ago that he went to American for a further study·去掉It was that句子为Three years ago he went to America for a further study．句子通顺，意思完整，那么，这就是一个强调句型。
法庭宣布白人警察达伦·威尔逊(Darren Wilson)不会因枪杀手无寸铁的黑人青少年迈克尔·布朗(Michael Brown)而面临指控的当晚，弗格森爆发了暴力事件。奥巴马呼吁大家冷静时表示，弗格森的形势表明全国仍然面临更广泛的挑战 。
“我们需要意识到，这不仅仅是弗格森面临的问题。这是全美国的问题 。过去几十年，我们在种族关系方面取得了重大进展 。我自己的生活中也曾亲眼目睹，否认取得的进展就是否认美国改革的能力 。但是仍然存在问题，有色人种社区仍然未能解决这些问题，这也是事实 。”
美国进展中心工作人员，总统前资深助手Daniella Gibbs Leger：“由于他不再竞选连任，政治危机从某种程度上得到缓解。是否还有其他风险？总是有，只要你在美国，无论何时谈论宗族问题都有风险 。但是我认为这超出了政治风险的范畴，这对他来说是一个非常私人的问题 。”
奥巴马以前也曾慷慨激昂地讨论种族问题。2012年，当黑人青少年特雷沃恩·马丁(Trayvon Martin)在另外一起种族案件中被枪杀之后，总统表示，马丁原本可能是他的孩子 。
“密苏里州弗格森事件及事后风波迫使总统不得不发表评论。所以，这是事实，他确实打破了禁忌 。但是我希望禁忌真的被打破，他能够切实地采取行动 。”