President Joe Biden urged the country to grapple with its checkered past as he marked the 100th anniversary of the race massacre in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
In a speech in the city that experienced the violence in 1921, Biden described the two days of unrest Tulsa experienced as “literal hell” that was “unleashed” before leading a moment of silence to honor the 300-plus black residents believed to have been killed in the riots.
“My fellow Americans, this was not a riot. This was a massacre,” Biden said Tuesday in Tulsa. “Among the worst in our history. But not the only one. And for too long, forgotten by our history.”
Biden’s trip to Tulsa was planned to “shine a light” on the incident because the country “can’t just choose to learn what we want to know and not what we should know,” according to the president.
“We should know the good, the bad, everything. That’s what great nations do.