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Obama message goes viral after Charlottesville violence

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(FILES) This file photo taken on May 25, 2017 shows former US President Barack Obama speaking after receiving the German media prize ceremony in Baden-Baden, southern Germany. Former US president Barack Obama called on August 7, 2017 on Kenyans to hold a peaceful and untainted election, speaking out on the eve of a crucial vote in the East African country where his father was born.”I urge Kenyan leaders to reject violence and incitement; respect the will of the people,” Obama said in a statement. Tuesday’s elections pit President Uhuru Kenyatta against his historic rival Raila Odinga, who has run for president thrice and lost each time. / AFP PHOTO / THOMAS KIENZLE

A tweet from Barack Obama drew more than two million “likes” by Monday as the former US president offered a message of tolerance following a deadly weekend clash at a white supremacist rally.

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion,” Obama said in the message, quoting the late South African leader Nelson Mandela.

Obama’s tweet garnered 2.3 million “likes,” the third most popular of all time, according to the Twitter-tracking site Favstar. The message was retweeted 980,000 times.

Obama’s tweet struck a chord after the death of a 32-year-old woman hit by a car driven into a crowd by a suspected white supremacist on Saturday in Charlottesville, Virginia.

President Donald Trump drew fire for a tepid initial response to the violence, and he followed up Monday with a stronger condemnation of “those who spread violence in the name of bigotry.”

Obama gave additional quotes from Mandela.

“People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love,” a tweet read.

“For love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

The most-liked tweet of all time was from singer Ariana Grande earlier this year — saying “from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry” — after a deadly attack at her Manchester concert.

That tweet dethroned the popular photo tweet from the 2014 Oscars ceremony by actress Ellen DeGeneres.

Obama’s tweet also prompted more than 37,000 responses, including both positive and negative comments.


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