Obama reflects on race: Hopes of 'post-racial' society 'naive'

President Obama shared some reflections on race as he prepares to leave office.  

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In a lengthy interview with NBC's Lester Holt, the president said that he thinks the whole country took pride in that the fact that the nation had advanced through slavery, Jim Crow and discrimination “to the point where we could elect somebody who looked like me to the highest office in the land, and pretty handily.”

But he said the idea that his election would somehow create a “post-racial” society was naive and unrealistic, but still created some problems later on — such as minority groups feeling like their problems weren't addressed or white people wanting to think racism was over.

Obama said he has always tried to assume the best in others and find common ground. 

“Hopefully a generation that has been raised under my presidency will remember how I’ve talked about these issues in a way thats respectful of everybody,” he said.