I am thankful that some of us, in a cynical time, can still be touched enough to shed tears for, not only a man, but for an entire very human family, and what it stood for. Years after the death of John and Bobby, I could not find a Black or Hispanic professional or political office anywhere that did not have pictures of them displayed prominently…embodying hope…and reminding us of what we were all working for.
But more than that he worked tirelessly for ALL Americans. I remember his speech at the Democratic National Convention in Denver last summer, even when we knew he was dying of brain cancer.
For me this is a season of hope — new hope for a justice and fair prosperity for the many, and not just for the few — new hope.And this is the cause of my life — new hope that we will break the old gridlock and guarantee that every American — north, south, east, west, young, old — will have decent, quality health care as a fundamental right and not a privilege.
After the death of John, when I was a little older and more politically aware, I, however, thinking we had a second chance, was personally most shattered and disappointed by the assassination of Bobby of whom Teddy said at his eulogy at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York:
“My brother need not be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life, to be remembered simply as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and tried to heal it, saw war and tried to stop it,” Mr. Kennedy said, his voice faltering. “Those of us who loved him and who take him to his rest today pray that what he was to us and what he wished for others will someday come to pass for all the world.
”Teddy, perhaps, although not as mythically loved, was foreshadowing his own legacy.