Former President Barack Obama offered a consoling message and a collective call to action in a statement released Friday afternoon.

Obama posted the statement on Facebook and Twitter shortly after noon, addressing the death of George Floyd at the hands of police and the subsequent protests and civil unrest in Minneapolis.

“It’s natural to wish for life ‘to just get back to normal’ as a pandemic and economic crisis upend everything around us.” Obama wrote. “But we have to remember that for millions of Americans, being treated differently on account of race is tragically, painfully, maddeningly ‘normal’ – whether it’s while dealing with the health care system, or interacting with the criminal justice system, or jogging down the street, or just watching birds in a park.

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