Former President Barack Obama pleaded with Black Americans to take one of the Covid-19 mRNA vaccines.
Obama appeared on ATTN’s “Roll Up Your Sleeves” television special, alongside retired NBA stars Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley on Sunday.
The goal of the TV special was to convince hesitant Black people to take one of the still experimental vaccines.
Obama urged Black Americans to “forget what happened back in the day,” referring to the infamous Tuskegee experiment.
Obama said those men got sick and some died because the doctors withheld treatment.
“The irony is when you know about the Tuskegee experiment, what was going on there was the government withheld treatment that was available for black men for syphilis. It wasn’t that they made them sick by giving them medicine, it’s that they didn’t give them medicine they needed.”
Referring to the experimental vaccines as “medicine,” Obama said, “So here’s a situation where if the medicine’s available, we need to take it.”
He said Black people should take the mRNA vaccines because the “wealthy and the powerful” are taking it.
“And look, if the wealthy and the powerful in our society are all lining up to get shots, that means everybody should know it’s a good thing to get.”
The CDC said only 25% of the American population got at least one shot of the vaccine.