President Obama, while attending Reverend Clementa Pinckney’s funeral in Charleston, South Carolina, on Friday, delivered a moving version of Amazing Grace in the middle of his touching eulogy. Pinckney was gunned down, along with eight others, last week during Bible study by a racist in a hate crime.
But the President’s speech will be remembered for a moment at the end when he launched into a solo of Amazing Grace, that at first stunned the mourners and then brought them to their feet as they joined him in song, CNN wrote.
Rev. Pinckney was a state senator and one of the nine victims of the tragic shooting that occurred in the church where his funeral took place. “If we can find that grace, anything is possible,” Obama stated to the congregation. “If we can tap that grace, everything can change,” Rolling Stone said.
President Obama sings Amazing Grace at the eulogy for Clementa Pinckney in Charleston:
In a moment of silence, Obama began to sing Amazing Grace.
He was then was joined by the choir, attendees, and then the musicians, who joined in the performance. After the the singing finished, he said that each victim had “found that grace,” and then he named all nine then concluded with: “May God continue to shed his grace on the United States of America.”
“What a good man,” the president said of Rev. Pinckney. “Sometimes I think that’s the best thing to hope for when you’re eulogised, after all the words and recitations and resumes are read, to just say somebody was a good man.”
He also spoke about the Confederate flag and rejected the arguments of those who would defend it: “For too long, we were blind to the pain that the Confederate flag stirred into many of our citizens.
President Obama delivers eulogy—full video:
“It’s true a flag did not cause these murders. But as people from all walks of life, Republicans and Democrats, now acknowledge, including Governor Haley, whose recent eloquence on the subject is worthy of praise as we all have to acknowledge, the flag has always represented more than just ancestral pride.
“Removing the flag from this state’s capital would not be an act of political correctness. It would not an insult to the valour of Confederate soldiers. It would simply be acknowledgement that the cause for which they fought, the cause of slavery, was wrong.
“It would be one step in an honest accounting of America’s history, a modest but meaningful balm for so many unhealed wounds.”
This was a speech made by a man who no longer has to worry about re-election. You could see how deeply angered and also how saddened he was. The first African American President of the United States made this speech without a doubt.