For the season finale of “The Michelle Obama Podcast” on Wednesday (September 16) our former first lady introduced listeners to her older brother, Craig Robinson and their mom, Marian Robinson to share some intimate family stories. The Robinson’s also looked back on a “heartbreaking” and “terrifying” incident that involved race, prejudice and a 10-year-old Craig.
Craig, now 58, recalled a time when police officers accused him of stealing his own bike.
“It was terrifying only because I was always taught that the police are your friends and they'll believe the truth,” said Craig, on the latest podcast episode. “This guy grabbed my bike and he wouldn't let it go,” he continued, saying that the officers were asking him questions to purposefully trip him up. “I was like, ‘Oh you got this all wrong, this is my bike, don't worry, this isn't a stolen bike,’ and he would not believe me."
Their mother Marian Robinson also recalled the harrowing incident and detailed how she confronted the two Black Chicago cops who brought Craig home. One of the officers later admitted they knew her son was telling the truth.
“What you did was cancel out a whole lot of things that we had been teaching them,” Marian remembered telling them. “And I think you need to come back here and talk to them and at least admit you made a serious mistake, so that you won't cancel out everything we've been trying to teach our children.”
Michelle Obama added that these racial experiences are “such a way of life” for young Black boys and girls in America.
“It doesn't matter who you are and what kind of values you have,” our forever flotus said.
“Nobody thinks about the fact that we all come from good families that are trying to teach values," she continued. "But when you leave the safety of your home and go out into the street, where being Black is a crime in and of itself, we have all had to learn how to operate outside of our homes with a level of caution and fear, because you never know.”
To listen to the season finale of “The Michelle Obama Podcast” head on over to Spotify.