Hillary Clinton Finally Spoke Out on Ferguson and What She Said Was Absolutely Brilliant

hillary-clinton-2For nearly three weeks, people from both sides of the political spectrum have asked, “Where’s Hillary Clinton’s comments on Ferguson?” Which is to be expected. She’s a very prominent public figure and likely 2016 presidential candidate (and probable winner). So, naturally, people wanted to know what she had to say.

But, alas, it was nearly three weeks later and she had yet to say anything.

Honestly, I think that was for the best. Because, let’s face it, no matter when she eventually made some kind of comment, she was going to be attacked for it.

If she came out and said something right after the shooting, she would have been hammered for trying to exploit the tragedy for political gains. If she let things settle down some (like she eventually ended up doing), then her comments would clearly be motivated by public pressure and “politics.”

No matter how she would have handled it, she would have been attacked in some way.

Well, on Thursday, she finally spoke out on what transpired in Ferguson, Missouri. And, quite honestly, her comments were some of the best that I’ve heard on the issue so far. She said:

“Imagine what we would feel and what we would do if white drivers were three times as likely to be searched by police during a traffic stop as black drivers instead of the other way around. If white offenders received prison sentences ten percent longer than black offenders for the same crimes. If a third of all white men, just look at this room and take one-third, went to prison during their lifetime. Imagine that. That is the reality in the lives of so many of our fellow Americans in so many of the communities in which they live.”

Why do I think these comments were so well worded? Because they addressed the situation in a rational manner. Because what she said is absolutely true. And it goes to the very real, and systemic, problem African Americans face in the United States.

Sure, the shooting itself is the event that people want to point to in order to justify outrage. But the truth is, outrage needed to already be there. And it has been for some.

As white Americans, it’s nearly impossible for us to understand that on many levels African Americans do face obstacles that we do not. Because the stats don’t lie. African Americans get harassed by the police more, are convicted more often and face longer prison sentences than white Americans.

But instead of trying to figure out how we can fix these issues, the argument almost always inevitably devolves to a white vs. black debate that doesn’t get us anywhere. And while racism obviously plays a part in this, it’s not the only factor causing it.

And we’ll never “fix” these problems by “taking sides” and blaming one another. They’ll be fixed when both sides come together, to work with one another, to try to better understand each other.

Which is what I believe Hillary Clinton’s comments were trying to do.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


Facebook comments

  • Meggie

    As a white person, I know it’s hard to imagine. But as a white person who values anonymity, I know that it would be profoundly troubling to have a personal appearance that, by itself, makes people afraid of me, And to be suspected and mistrusted for no good reason except similarity of visible physical characteristics, and to have foisted onto me the shame of knowing that I am being assessed blame for the behaviors of the worst-behaved of people who look like me…that would be intolerable.

    • Damon L. Arnold

      A white person in a business suit strikes fear in blacks in the urban neighborhoods because it’s either child welfare coming to take a kid, our some law agency, and that never works out well for blacks, so what it’s your normal is someone else’s abnormal, what it’s your comfort is someone else’s discomfort, if you fear someone else’s differences that too is your problem and your comment oohs precisely what the problem is in this country. Small minds creating HUGE divides among the races

      • Cheryl

        Uh what? a white person in a suit strikes fear in blacks? the majority of kids taken away from unfit parents are white, and they don’t sent suits into the more urban areas, that means they’d actually be giving a damn about the black community. it isn’t abnormal for blacks to see anyone in a suit. it is totally normal for a white person to get all bent out of shape at the sight of anything darker than a paper bag. your mind is one of those creating and maintaining the divide.

      • Allen Clifttard

        Thats right Cheryl keep on typing without making any sense. I wish I could reach through the inter-webs and slap some sense into all three of you

      • Cheryl

        i’m the one making no sense. obviously the science shared before me is fact. maybe there is something wrong with me for never having felt fear when seeing white people in business attire. i guess i’m one of the 5 blacks not living in the inner city.

        i, too, wish we were face to face, so i could roundhouse kick you back into your mom’s basement.

      • Cheryl = Fatty

        If you weren’t such a disgusting fat body I might be a little nervous! Time to grab your EBT card and go buy another pound of sugary snacks!

      • Cheryl

        lmao. hey now. don’t go projecting your mother onto me.

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      • giankeys loves shemale porn

        so what about whites in suits who are religious ( VOODOO) scum or salesmen or applying for a job IN that neighborhood? maybe they are white trash regressive FOX “news” contributors just wanting to find an African American so they can pay him to go to a TEA ( bag) RALLY so that white trash rally doesn’t look so racist
        how s that Benghazi coverup doing?

    • allenels

      the question becomes – why do you and many white people fear black skin? Truthfully, people my color have suffered more brutality and violence from white skinned individuals and yet I know of few of us who shrink r avoid contact with whites. If the person wearing that dark skin begins to speak in a foreign tongue, that ‘fear’ suddenly disappears instead of the typical response of many white women to clutch their purses as I, a 66 year old physically non-imposing black female without tattoos or flashing gang signs, or wearing huge hoop earrings try to finish daily exercise routine in the resort area where I live full-time. So, tell me, what do you fear? I think it’s time for blacks to start crossing the street whenever whites are casually meandering in Malls or parking lots, or we should call 911 when an unfamiliar, suspicious white face appears in our supposed all black neighborhoods, (Note: I have never lived in an all black neighborhood in my lifetime) or that all black women grab their purses as grocery or clothes shopping white women of all ages pass by their person. Perhaps then, the reverse of what we experience will begin to make profound changes in responses not rooted in experience but merely out of fear, fear inflamed by media. I can’t tell you how exhausting it is to have to explain yourself to people, not law enforcement personnel, but plain old everyday people whose feathers get ruffled just because they automatically think “Why, you don’t belong here! I live here and your kind should not.”

      • Michelle Rhoades

        The fear arises from historical guilt as much as the media fanning the flames. Deep down I think many still feel guilty (and we should) for how our ancestors treated the ancestors of black people. Then we project the anger we are sure they should feel on to them whether they are angry looking or not.

      • allenels

        Perhaps your observation is correct. I can only share my personal experiences and as such I have to wonder how anyone rises above “historical guilt”? I wonder how long it will take for human beings to put aside our so-called differences and embrace our commonalities? To live “haunted” by the past and not understand tat the past is exactly that, the past….well I cannot observe that the past controls your present. My wish for you is that one day you wake-up and ‘understand’ that we are all the same. We are all challenged, we all experience pain and bewilderment and confusion. We all love. And we can all forgive and we can all look beyond color to embrace a new friend, a child, a mentor.

      • Charles Vincent

        Just a thought her but perhaps “minorities” should stop asking for preferential treatment aka affirmative action etcetera, and stop assisting in the destruction of the family unit via government intervention in what is clearly not their purview.
        In before the cries of you’re a bigot, my grand father was balk and married my white grand mother in the late 1940’s after coming back from France when WW2 ended. He started his own construction company in a small town and was successful not because he got jobs throughout affirmative action but because he did the job better and faster and in many cases for less money that the competition.

      • allenels

        With all due respect, your historical facts are skewed. Minorities did not ask for preferential treatment…minorities only asked to be treated equally. If you do a little research, you will find white women have benefitted the most from Affirmative Action. Labels? Hmmm…let’s see…if you check any government form, your race, ie, races are required. When I was born I was a Negro, then changed to “colored” and sometime during the 1960’s I magically changed into African American. It was such a delight to travel in foreign lands and finally be recognized as simply American. Be aware of the world that you occupy…and part of your belief system has obviously been formed, at the very least, by propaganda.

      • Charles Vincent

        First I am not saying minorities asked for it I am saying they need to ask for it to be abolished.

        “Labels? Hmmm…let’s see…if you check any government form, your race, ie, races are required.”

        This is part of the problem I was talking about.

        Also don’t assume you know what has or hasn’t formed my belief system

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        I’m afraid of white people in the Deep South. I will NEVER go there willingly. I grew up in the 1960s and remember Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman. I remember “If it wasn’t for these outside agitators, we wouldn’t have no problems.” Police dogs and firehoses. And that mentality STILL exists. And I’m not black, I’m Hispanic, but when I was in fourth grade we were run out of a restaurant in Little Rock (1964) because my stepfather was white, my mother was Puerto Rican and I looked like a “nappy headed pickaninny,”

      • allenels

        I can only say to you – “I am so sorry that you were mistreated.” No child should ever have to endure people clothed in grown-up bodies masquerading as adults. We can only act and react differently that the way(s) that we were/are treated. Good luck to you! Oh, btw, I visited Georgia about a decade ago. My reception was benign. But I was a tourist, just passing through.

      • Glen

        Allenels, I’m sorry but blacks in America suffer more brutality and violence from their own kind. The fact is that whites are cautious around blacks because of the propensity for violence. Only white on black violence seems to be reported by the media. How many instances can you recall the media reporting black on white violence? I would bet not nearly as many because it is not as sensational and whites don’t tend to overreact and burn down their own neighborhoods, providing additional ratings opportunities.

        Nobody is holding the black community back, but those in the black community. The fact is that if they would cleanup their neighborhoods, act like civilized human beings, take responsibility for their own issues, make sure their children are studying and getting a solid education, the narrative would change.

        There are many, many respectable blacks in society today, that have made a conscious decision to work hard, be respectable, and a productive member of society. I say all of this knowing full well that there is plenty of white trash roaming the streets too.

        Just my 2 cents. Oh by the way I’m of Irish decent and my family suffered many atrocities in America, along with the Chinese, and Japanese in their camps during the war. Blacks are not the only ones to suffer here, but are the only ones you hear complaining about it and not moving from the past to the present and future.

      • allenels

        As do whites Maggie. And yet you manage to walk through your daily life without assuming a white person means you harm? Would you impart the same wisdm you think will work for blacks folks in their communities t the legions of poor whites that also have grave problems n their communities. Or are poor whites absented from what you consider “bad behaviors”? Strange, since you mention your Irish roots we could e related.

        My point, Maggie, is that you stated quite clearly that you are uncomfortable when blacks are nearby, without knowing if the person is educated, a doctor, a recently returned vet…and yet you manage t harbor fear for all blacks, unless you see that the have accomplished what you judge as acceptable.

        We cannot and should not trade “perpetration of violence” against the other. When my uncles returned home, to the good ole USA after the Korean War, after WWII, do you actually believe they were received with open arms by white America? Yes, the Japanese were interred and they also received reparations.

        People from across the ethnic spectrum behave badly, and yet, because blacks are visible we have been saddled with a scary identity. The tragedies of young white men with guns that have killed many are not demonized in the media, white folks go on with their lives without fear of young white men that are either fighting personal demons r crazed out on drugs. And then we have Michael Brown, identified and shackled with the description of “thug” while his body still laid in the street.

        That’s the divide Maggie. You can make pronouncements about violence in black neighborhoods and never even contemplate that young black are not all thugs and intent on ripping off whitey!

      • Meggie

        I am being truly misunderstood here…I must have not made myself clear enough. What I meant to say was that I believe that most white people don’t fully understand what it’s like to be suspected and scrutinized and maybe even shot because somebody who looks kind of like you behaved badly. Nobody is going to blame me because I look like that Ponzi scheme guy who robbed people of their life savings, or because I look like the majority of serial killers.

      • Stephen Barlow

        So you APPROVE of rampant police racism and the murder of black children in the streets by PAID PUBLIC SERVANTS?

      • Meggie

        I didn’t say that I fear black skin. What I said was that I realize how difficult it must be to have a physical characteristic that makes people afraid of you BECAUSE having that visible characteristic gets you blamed for the worst behavior of people who look like you. Of course, white people don’t fully understand how unfair this is, but I was about 18 when I dawned on me that I could behave pretty damn badly, and people who looked like me wouldn’t have to be dragged down…because I was WAY more anonymous because of my appearance of being in the majority. Nobody was going to fear me because (eg) Charles Manson is white.

    • Stephen Barlow

      Do you think it’s the killer cops anonymity that he should be worried about keeping? Or his integrity?

      Do you think he should be embarrassed at only hitting his target 6 times when unloading a full clip @ an unarmed man less than 30 feet from him?

  • Cheryl

    she waited to gauge the situation. if i had three weeks to write a paragraph, i’d be hailed as the all-mighty as well.

    • Damon L. Arnold

      Can’t understand if you’re to busy passing judgment, keep that small mind to yourself and DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN.

      • Cheryl

        too* and whatever bruh. you keep hiding out from mister in the suit!

      • Damon L. Arnold

        The only point I was making is that a white person in a suit can be just as unsettling as a black person in saggy/baggy clothes. It’s all about perspective and life experience. But to judge either based on appearance is the problem because it’s a divisive way of thinking that keeps the races divided. Change the mental attitude and fix the problem.

      • Cheryl

        next time don’t write it as fact and don’t add anything about CPS or police. all your doing is showing your bias and how misinformed you are.

      • Everyone

        You should probably just shut your fool mouth.

      • Cheryl

        because that’s why we write on threads. don’t like it .. well, sit and spin.

      • Damon L. Arnold

        Actually it’s obvious from your responses that your small mind can’t comprehend and for me to further reply to an obvious idiot lessens me and my point. I’m sorry the education system failed you, but as I requested before PLEASE DON’T HAVE ANY CHILDREN. AN IDIOT CAN ONLY RAISE IDIOTS AND THERE’S TOO MANY IN THE WORLD.

      • Cheryl

        case in point … you.

        my education is nothing to scoff at. just because i refuse to accept your stereotypes as fact doesn’t mean that i’m an idiot. my life as a black woman is too much for you to comprehend and that’s okay. i don’t expect you to be able to actually put any thought into how you worded your statements, because it’s obvious that you never have.

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    • Claude DeRogatis

      Racism is here to stay. It’s abhorrent and real. White people will never know or fully understand what it’s like to be black. Maybe our grandchildren may have a world unfettered by this disease.

  • Gabriel Gentile

    “And we’ll never “fix” these problems by “taking sides” and blaming one another. They’ll be fixed when both sides come together, to work with one another, to try to better understand each other.”

    Okay, what would you ask of each side in particular?

  • Stephen Barlow

    DAMN! If only!!!!!!!!


    Does anyone doubt…
    that THIS person


    AMerica’s leader?

  • Michael Miller

    I don’t agree with this. When you drive down the road, with your music as loud as you can get it, leaned to one side, and hunched down, and then give the officer guff, for pulling you over, thats what you get. Also, “talking loud is part of our culture”, is a cop out. I am of mostly german heritage. Thats like me saying, “I’m part Irish, so its ok for me to be a drunk”. Don’t break the law. Don’t go robbing gas stations, and beating on cops, and you won’t get in trouble, or shot!

    • allenels

      You have a fractured view of all black people. I have German and Irish blood in my gene pool and guess what? Being a woman of color one that taught high school for a number of years in an all white high school, I can tell you that the “white boys” at the high school played their music loudly, lean to one side while driving, and most talked loudly as well….So, your so-called definition/description of black youths is down right wrong or disingenuous!

    • DrVonEvilPants

      Seriously? You’re going with victim blaming because they’re acting in a manner in which you don’t approve of? Wake up and get some empathy.

  • Jim

    It’s nice that Hillary took the time for her pollsters, speechwriters and advisers to come up with a message that was exactly calculated to score the most political points possible. HC is a wealthy white woman from the south who has never done ANYTHING to advance the cause of minorities. Actually, she’s never done anything other than advance her on career.

    • Sandra Imms

      I guess you’re just are afraid of having an intelligent woman as the president of this country. And if you want to sound intelligent and hide your ignorance that is so apparent then get your facts straight. She’s from Illinois not the south. And her point is very clear and obvious to anyone with a brain. How would you feel if you were in their shoes scenario.

      • strayaway

        “Let us happily bid a not-so-fond farewell—is good riddance too strong a term?—to Hillary Clinton, who for the past four years has represented the hawkish end of the Obama administration.” -from the Bob Dreyfuss Nation article “Good Riddance to Warmonger Hillary Clinton”

    • strayaway

      You are wrong about one thing. Hillary is from Illinois.


    She is certainly adept at stirring the pot of racism. Very much reminiscent of a witch stirring a bubbling cauldron.

    She AND the President should be vocal about quelling the anger; rather, they jump head-long into the fray in order to exacerbate the situation. SHAME ON THEM!

  • Jim Bean

    Hillary’s message is that people need to stop making the associations that humans naturally and instinctively make based on the information they receive. Brilliant!

    When someone figures out how to do that, Pubs can use it to stop voters from making negative associations about them based on what liberals tell them. We can learn to love ISIS and we can retroactively learn to love Hitler and Pol Pot.

  • Jason

    What Hillary said is deeper than any of these comments. You’re all so biased..the world isnt so black and white. Its the fault of both white and black america, equally. Things wont change unless WE change them TOGETHER.

  • Stephen Barlow

    My outrage is at the prosecutor for intentionally flubbing the Grand Jury investigation, and for not issuing an arrest warrant on day one. It is the most blatant racism NOT directed at the President that I have seen since before the Civil Rights Act was signed.

    And the $400,000 collected for a cowardly killer who is still in hiding with the protection of his fellow officers. it’s time for some JIHAD in America, kidnapping of cops with the ransome to be trails before fair juries for killer cops. Maybe snatch a couple of cops kids from school and the a few prosecutors punks… That would give them at least SOME motivation for being slightly honest in keeping their oaths to the citizens.