Clinton then suggested that the best way to honor fallen police is to work on improving policing — with the aim of avoiding the deaths of African Americans in police custody that have also been in the headlines — and to take steps to reduce gun violence.
“People who care about protecting police officers should be committed to getting assault weapons off the street to begin with,” Clinton said, referring to the manner in which five officers in Dallas were recently killed.
Clinton was warmly received here, particularly after she vowed to remain committed to addressing the deaths of unarmed African Americans at the hands of police and said white Americans need to do more to empathize with their black counterparts when it comes to relations with the police.
“I will start taking action on this on day one and every day after that until we get this done,” she said. “You know what, when the 24-hour news cycle moves on, I won’t. This is too important. This goes to the heart of who we are. This is about our character as Americans.”
Clinton’s appearance before the 107th convention of the NAACP came on the first day of the Republican National Convention — a sign that she is not ceding the news cycle to Donald Trump, the GOP presumptive nominee, during this week.
“We all know about that other convention happening up in Cleveland today,” Clinton said toward the outset of her remarks. “My opponent may have a different view, but there’s nowhere I’d rather be than right here with all of you.”
She also took aim at Trump, accusing him of running a divisive campaign and relaying to the audience a 1973 civil rights case that the Justice Department filed that accused Trump’s firm of violating the Fair Housing Act of 1968 by discriminating against minority applicants for rental units.
The case, which was settled without an admission of wrongdoing by Trump, was “shocking,” Clinton said.