Friday, November 14, 2014

Robert F. Kennedy - speech on occasion of Martin Luther King's Assassination

In April 1968 Martin Luther King was murdered.  Robert F. Kennedy - then a candidate for the Democratic Party's nomination for President - announced the death with these remarks.  Two months later the Senator was himself murdered.  It is with sadness that I listened to these remarks which I learned of thanks to a link posted by Prof. Gerard Magliocca whose office at Indiana University Law School is near the site where Kennedy spoke that night.

Though we have a Black president whom I admire and am grateful that the country rallied to elect him twice, I nonetheless agree with Attorney General Holder that as a country we have been cowards when it comes to race; that white Americans especially are blind to their own prejudices and cling to both idealized images of themselves and ill founded criticisms of others - especially of Black Americans.  White Americans are too quick to label Black people as lacking discipline, as criminal, unmotivated, the source of their own problems, etc.  I do not accept as Thomas Edsall recently suggested, that white voters voted Republican because Democrats - through the Affordable Care Act - hurt them while helping minorities.
White people predominantly vote Republican because they hold themselves as superior to others. Mitt Romney's 47% remark expressed that view - and helped him to win 70% of white men's votes, and white voters 62-38.
Romney did not sugar coat it.  Romney was plain as in this 2012 op-ed  he wrote:
Over the past three years, Barack Obama has been replacing our merit-based society with an Entitlement Society.
If we continue on this course for another four years, we may pass the point of no return. We will have created a society that contains a sizable contingent of long-term jobless, dependent on government benefits for survival.Government dependency can only foster passivity and sloth.
That is the modern way to cry "N*".

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