(WASHINGTON) — President Obama said Saturday that the nation’s new African-American history museum opening in Washington, D.C., tells “an essential part of our American story.”
“This national museum helps to tell a richer and fuller story of who we are,” Obama said at the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. “It helps us better understand the lives, yes, of the president but also the slave, the industrialist but also the porter, the keeper of the status quo but also the activist seeking to overthrow that status quo.”
The Obamas have visited the museum twice ahead of its official opening. On Sept. 14, the first family got a private sneak preview of the museum, and then visited again this week where the president and first lady told Good Morning America‘s Robin Roberts of the museum’s significance to children across the country.
“What I think you want is for this generation of kids to come away thinking, ‘Yeah, everybody can do everything,’ that if you’re a little white boy or a little white girl, little black boy, little black girl, a Latino, Asian, if you grow up and you are gay or straight, if you are disabled, that you’re empowered,” he said.
Also to be in attendance at the opening Saturday are former President George W. Bush and former First Lady Laura Bush. It was Bush who in 2003 signed into law a bill to move forward with the building of the museum. Construction broke ground on the National Mall in 2012.
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