While announcing executive actions to further restrict gun sales on Tuesday, President Obama became emotional when recounting the children who died during the Sandy Hook shooting.
This very public display of emotion surprised many, as Obama doesn’t cry in public very often. In fact, he has a reputation of being rather stoic and emotionless.
“Every time I think about those kids, it gets me mad,” he said as he brushed away tears.
Over the past seven years, there have been numerous tragedies he didn’t publicly shed a tear over, including the deaths of black men and children at the hands of police officers.
Here are 11 other things that Obama never (publicly) cried about.
1. Laquan McDonald’s death
Obama’s hometown of Chicago has been rife with tension after police shot 17-year-old Laquan McDonald then apparently colluded with city officials in an attempt to conceal details surrounding his death. Many were upset that the dashcam footage showing a police officer fatally shooting the teen was released to the public 13 months after the October 2014 shooting. The delay in releasing the video raised suspicions that Rahm Emanuel, Chicago mayor and Obama’s former chief of staff, was involved in covering up the police’s actions surrounding his death.
A deluge of emails from city officials show that the Emanuel administration was concerned about the optics of the shooting, and it appears that they tried to minimize attention to the tragic event. The emails, which total over 3,000 pages, were made available to the public on New Year’s Eve.
While Obama did release a statement saying that he was “deeply disturbed” by the footage, he hasn’t publicly shed tears over a police officer shooting this teenager 16 times even after McDonald had already fallen to the ground. Nor has he claimed to have lost sleep over the subsequent cover-up that his former pal seems to have participated in.
2. Tamir Rice’s Death
Twelve-year-old Tamir Rice was shot to death while playing with a toy gun at a park in November 2014. The police officer who shot Rice has been cleared of any legal wrongdoing, but video footage showing the child’s death is truly horrifying.
3. Eric Garner’s Death
Eric Garner was choked to death by police last year while they apprehended him for selling untaxed cigarettes. Though he was resisting arrest, Garner can be heard repeatedly saying: “I can’t breathe.”
4. San Bernardino Attack
Obama was so undisturbed by the worst terror attack on U.S. soil since 9/11 that he waited two weeks before he finally making a pit stop at the site of the tragedy before taking off on his vacation to Hawaii.
5. Paris Terror Attacks
In the wake of the attacks that killed 130 people, Obama said climate change negotiations would be a “powerful rebuke” to ISIS — the terror group claiming responsibility for the carnage. While standing alongside President Francois Hollande to give a joint press conference on the attacks, Obama’s eyes remained dry, even as he embraced the leader of the country that had just suffered a great loss.
6. Fort Hood Massacre
Thirteen American soldiers were shot to death in Fort Hood, Texas, by an Army major who was repeatedly promoted despite continual warnings that he had become radicalized. Before opening fire in a processing center, he shouted “Allahu Akbar,” an Arabic phrase often used by jihadists that means “God is great.”
While Obama denounced the shooter’s actions, he had avoided publicly calling the shooter’s actions “terrorism” until a few weeks ago, six years after the fact.
7. Planned Parenthood’s Baby Butchery and Organ Harvesting
Employees of the nation’s largest abortion provider, which aborted over 300,000 babies last year, were caught on tape mutilating and picking through dead baby bodies to find sellable organs.
Other Planned Parenthood officials haggled over the price of organs and some were caught attempting to minimize the public attention to their organ-harvesting scheme for fear of bad press.
If the death of 26 children was enough to warrant a tearful response in public from the president, certainly the 300,000 babies who were aborted last year by Planned Parenthood deserve to be mourned as well.
8. Kayla Mueller’s Kidnapping and Death
The 27-year-old American aid worker was killed earlier this year while in captivity to ISIS. Despite having her fingernails ripped out and being raped repeatedly, Mueller refused to escape with some of her fellow hostages because she was reportedly afraid that her foreign appearance would inhibit their escape.
Mueller isn’t the only woman to be forced into the role of a sex slave to ISIS. The terror group has reportedly kidnapped thousands of women and girls for the purpose of raping and exchanging them with one another. They released a fatwa last month regulating the practice of sex slavery and rape in order to justify it with their beliefs, which are rooted in a radical interpretation of the Quran.
9. James Foley’s Beheading
Not only did Obama not cry when responding to the news of American journalist James Foley’s beheading by ISIS, he immediately ran off to play a round of golf. When he was confronted about this rather aloof behavior, Obama responded by saying that he “should have anticipated the optics” of playing golf immediately after condemning ISIS’ brutal actions.
The terror group is known for killing their prisoners in particularly inhumane ways, like lighting them on fire, drowning them in cages, or strapping explosive collars around their necks.
10. ISIS’s Attack on a Russian Plane Carrying 224 Passengers
A Russian plane carrying 224 passengers crashed earlier this year, killing everyone onboard. U.S. authorities believe ISIS planted a bomb on the plane. Don’t panic, though: Obama says he is taking the whole thing “very seriously.”
11. Boko Haram’s Kidnapping of More than 300 Girls
Radical Islamist terrorist organization Boko Haram kidnapped more than 300 girls from a school in Nigeria in order to enslave and sell them as sex slaves last year. While the kidnapping and trafficking of hundreds of girls got Michelle Obama to use the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls in a cringe-worthy photo op, it did not elicit any tears from the president.