Beginning less than an hour ago, President Barack Obama held a impromptu press conference in the briefing room to share his thoughts about the death of Trayvon Martin and the not guilty verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. (This is on top of the brief statement he released earlier this week.) For nearly 17 minutes, the President gave what I would call an extraordinary and unprecedented speech that touched on the verdict itself, the need to review Stand Your Ground laws, and what it’s like to be a black boy/man in America, going one step further than he has in the past by saying, “Trayvon Martin could have been me.” I am so glad to see our President address this in such a thoughtful, nuanced way, especially given how many people would like to believe that his Presidency is indicative that we live in a “post-racial” world. You can watch the full briefing above (in two parts) and read a few of his most notable quotes after the jump. Keep reading »
Ending a years-long losing battle against making the morning-after pill accessible to all, the Obama administration has finally conceded to the wisdom of the masses and will stop fighting against emergency contraception. Keep reading »
He did not have sexual relations with that Asian/Pacific Islander “auntie.” Did you hear that, Michelle? [YouTube]
Time magazine released never-before-seen photos of President Obama attending his 1979 senior prom at the Punahou School in Honolulu, Hawaii. The photos were released by Kelli Allman (the one in the peach-colored dress), who attended the prom with her boyfriend Greg, Obama and his date Megan Hughes. Despite the fact that polyester was the fabric of choice in the ’70s, the group looks pretty great.
Allman also shared the sweet message that Obama left in her senior yearbook:
Kelli, It has been so nice getting to know you this year. You are extremely sweet and foxy, I don’t know why Greg would want to spend any time with me at all! You really deserve better than clowns like us; you even laugh at my jokes! I hope we can keep in touch this summer, even though Greg wil, be gone. Call me up and I’ll buy you lunch soemtimes. Anyway, good luck in everything you do, and stay happy. Your friend, Barry Obama.
And he sealed it with a heart! [Time]
Daniel Day Lewis is famous for really inhabiting his roles. On the set of his latest film, “Lincoln,” Lewis lived as Abraham Lincoln 24/7, and the same goes for his characters in ”There Will Be Blood” and “Last of the Mohicans.” So it makes total sense that in Steven Spielberg’s latest biopic, “Obama,” Lewis would really go overboard to play the president. So lifelike! [Mashable]
Missed the White House Correspondents’ Dinner on Saturday night? Of course you did, because why would be at home watching a bunch of politicians and members of the media yucking it up in their church best on a weekend night? Only sad, lonely losers like myself spend Saturday nights watching CSPAN. (Just kidding, I was totally out raging and I have two skinned knees to prove it!) Luckily, I taped President Obama’s speech for you! Love the hat tips to Jay-Z and Taylor Swift, and his quip that he remembers when BuzzFeed “was just something I did in college around 2 a.m.” Zing!
“Michelle and I have used the strategy when it comes to things like tattoos – what we’ve said to the girls is, ‘If you guys ever decide you’re going to get a tattoo, then mommy and me will get the same exact tattoo in the same place. And we’ll go on YouTube and show it off as a family tattoo. And our thinking is that might dissuade them from thinking that somehow that’s a good way to rebel.”
–Barack Obama discusses he and Michelle’s tattoo policy for his daughters on “Today.” I don’t know, that seems pretty hip to have your parents get matching tattoos and show them off on YouTube. I think that might actually encourage me to get inked just to see if my parents would follow through. [CS Monitor]
Today, in a 54-to-46 vote, the Senate voted against a compromised proposal that would have expanded background checks on firearm sales. This, despite the fact that the vast majority of Americans, including card-carrying NRA members, supported the measure. The parents of many of the children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, four months ago sat in the room as the Senate voted. Above, President Obama reacts to the vote and has some strong words for those politicians who voted against the proposal, calling it “a shameful day for Washington.” But he’s also clear that this fight is not over. (The playlist above breaks Obama’s remarks into two parts.)
A letter containing a “suspicious substance” was sent to President Obama and intercepted at the White House’s off-site mail center, according to the Secret Service. It arrived yesterday, the same day as a letter addressed to a Mississippi Republican Sen. Roger Wicker that tested positive for ricin, CNN reports. A second letter sent to the US Senate has also been intercepted and is being tested for the poison, the AP reports; Terry Moran of ABC News tweets that that second letter also tested positive. (Police reportedly have a suspect in mind in the case of the letter sent to Wicker.) Read more on Newser…