Hillary Clinton called the deaths of five police officers in Dallas this week “vicious and appalling,” adding that there was an “implicit bias” against the black community evident in American society and some police departments that must be addressed.
The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee made the remarks during a speech to a convention of African Methodist Episcopal Church members in Philadelphia Friday, Philly.com reported.
“What can leaders and people of faith say about events like these? It’s hard to even know where to start,” Clinton reportedly said.
“For now, let’s focus on what we already know deep in our hearts. We know there is something wrong with our country. There is too much violence. Too much hate. Too much senseless killing. And too many people who are dead who shouldn’t be.”
“Remember what they were doing? They were protecting a peaceful march,” Clinton said of the officers killed in Dallas.”There is nothing more vital to democracy than that. And they died for that.”
Clinton also said that, if elected, she would push for federal spending to train departments in better community policing practices, reportedly calling it a “national priority.”
The former secretary of state also said that white Americans need to do “a better job of listening” about the black experience in America.
“Ending the systemic racism that plagues our country, and rebuilding our communities, where the police and citizens all see themselves as being on the same side will require contributions from all of us,” Clinton said.
Reuters contributed to this report.