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straight talking

Barack Obama used the n-word while discussing racism

The US President was speaking on a comedian’s podcast.

CBS This Morning / YouTube

US PRESIDENT BARACK Obama says that the country has not overcome a legacy of racism and used the n-word to emphasise his point.

Race issues are once again front and centre following the murders of nine black people at a church in Charleston.

President Barack Obama has been speaking about about it since the murders last Wednesday and at the weekend used the n-word in an interview with comedian Marc Maron

Speaking to on the podcast WTF with Marc Maron, he used the term as he spoke of the the continued legacy of slavery in America. The podcast often uses crude language in the show.

He said:

It’s not just a matter of being polite to not say ‘nigger’ in public. That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not. It’s not just a matter of overt discrimination. Societies don’t, overnight, completely erase everything that happened 200 to 300 years prior.

The president said while attitudes about race have improved significantly since he was born to a white mother and black father, the legacy of slavery “casts a long shadow and that’s still part of our DNA that’s passed on.”

Obama also expressed frustration that “the grip of the NRA on Congress is extremely strong” and prevented gun control from advancing in Congress after 20 children and six educators were massacred in a Connecticut elementary school in 2012.

“I will tell you, right after Sandy Hook, Newtown, when 20 6-year-olds are gunned down, and Congress literally does nothing — yes, that’s the closest I came to feeling disgusted,” he said. “I was pretty disgusted.”

He said it’s important to respect that hunting and sportsmanship are important to a lot of gun-owning Americans.

“The question is just is there a way of accommodating that legitimate set of traditions with some common-sense stuff that prevents a 21-year-old who is angry about something or confused about something, or is racist, or is deranged from going into a gun store and suddenly is packing, and can do enormous harm,” Obama said in a reference to suspect Dylann Storm Roof, whose purported 2,500-word hate-filled manifesto talked about white supremacy.

Roof faces nine counts of murder after the mass shooting.

- With reporting by Associated Press

Read: White supremacist manifesto and pictures of Charleston suspect found online >

Read: US presidential hopeful calls Charleston massacre an accident >

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