A little more than 12 years ago, harassed by racists and his primary challenger, Hillary Clinton, expected to disown the opinions of pastor Jeremiah Wright, Obama stepped forward to provide a coherent statement on race in America, offering his “A More Perfect Union” speech.

He choose the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, to emphasize that America’s racial sins are part of our origins, encoded in our DNA. I encourage you to go find that speech. Read it. Here’s a passage that has always captured my attention: