Former President and native Texan George W. Bush gave a somber speech Tuesday at an interfaith ceremony honoring the five Dallas officers murdered last week.
Discussing the recent discord the country is facing, Bush started off by acknowledging how hopeless things can seem, especially in the face of such a horrible tragedy.
“At times, it seems like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together,” he said. “Argument turns too easily into animosity. Disagreement escalates too quickly into dehumanization.”
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However, his speech wasn’t all grim. The former president used the reminder of his time to remind the audience on what it is that truly unites us — American values.
“We have never been held together by blood or background,” he said. “We are bound by things of the spirit, by shared commitments to common ideals. At our best, we practice empathy, imagining ourselves in the lives and circumstances of others.”
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His speech was a message of respect and honor for those who wear a badge, and a reminder of the things that make this country great.
“Your loved ones’ time with you was too short. They did not get a chance to properly say goodbye, but they went where duty called,” Bush said. “They defended us, even to the end.”
President Obama’s tone, however, was a bit different. He used his time to discuss race relations, lecturing the attendees, admitting that bias still remains. But he assured Americans that we are “not as divided as we may seem.”
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