Comey’s Speech On Race Draws Praise

FBI director James Comey lives at one of the most elite addresses in Westport — a very white suburb to begin with.

But speaking yesterday at Georgetown University, he addressed race relations in stark terms.

The Washington Post described Comey as a “Teller of Hard Truths,” who called the nation “at a crossroads.” The Post quoted him:

As a society, we can choose to live our everyday lives, raising our families and going to work, hoping someone, somewhere, will do something to ease the tension — to smooth over the conflict. We can turn up the music on the car radio and drive around these problems. Or we can choose to have an open and honest discussion about what our relationship is today — what it should be, what it could be, and what it needs to be — if we took more time to better understand one another.

The Post added, “Comey laid out a number of hard truths on race — a rare move for such a high-profile white law enforcement official, or even a law-enforcement official, period.”

FBI director -- and Westport resident -- James Comey.

FBI director — and Westport resident — James Comey.

The New York Times said that the “unusually candid” speech was “well received by law enforcement officials.” The Times continued:

Citing the song “Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist” from the Broadway show “Avenue Q,” he said police officers of all races viewed black and white men differently. (Comey added) that some officers scrutinize African-Americans more closely using a mental shortcut that “becomes almost irresistible and maybe even rational by some lights” because black men are arrested at much higher rates than white men.

Click here to read Comey’s entire, groundbreaking speech. Or watch it below:

7 responses to “Comey’s Speech On Race Draws Praise

  1. I heard his speech yesterday and I truly thought it was ground breaking. It is a speech Obama SHOULD have given but never did. Comey is a true leader and I think his speech will be a difference….

  2. Does he currently live in Westport? Sort of a long commute, don’t you think?

    • Yes, he’s still got his house here. He was spotted recently at CVS, with a Secret Service detail (hard to miss — he’s 6-8). There is a decent amount of security when he’s around — some of it visible, some less so.

  3. A few hours ago, I posted this 22 minute speech on my facebook page saying it might just be 22 of the more important minutes anyone will spend. So thank you, Dan, for sharing this. I think we all need to hear what Mr. Comey has to say. Learning that he has a residence in Westport is very interesting. I hope that schools and churches will take the opportunity to show this video in their locations.

  4. Mr. Comey did an interview on sixty minutes that was just increadable. He is such a smart and honest man. Every police department in the U.S should show this speech to their officers. I think he should run for president !!!!

  5. Thanks for sharing this, Dan. I read about the speech in The NYTimes, but had no idea of the Westport connection. I’m linking to your post in my blog today.