While many current Democrats count Robert F. Kennedy as a hero, most would benefit from studying the courageous words he delivered forty years ago this month. In a speech to students at University of Cape Town in South Africa, exactly two years to the date before his untimely death, RFK told the world how to be heroic.
At the height of apartheid in South Africa and the civil rights movement at home, Kennedy forcefully gave his case for supporting human rights declaring, “We must recognize the full human equality of all of our people before God, before the law, and in the councils of government. We must do this, not because it is economically advantageous, although it is; not because of the laws of God command it, although they do… We must do it for the single and fundamental reason that it is the right thing to do.”
Democrats are unwilling to educate voters and take on conservative myths that human rights and social justice amount to undeserved handouts. Human rights only ensure equal access to the minimum level of support and freedom an individual needs to live their lives with dignity. Admitting that our fellow men and women deserve to live with dignity is not a renunciation of personal responsibility.
Instead of investing in developing community leaders to enlighten voters about party principles like human rights, Democrats have decided to do things on the cheap. They instead save their money for last minute strategies of half hearted voter education and “Get Out To Vote” efforts just before Election Day. This strategy is incapable of shaping what voters actually believe so Democrats must rely on campaign points that reiterate what people already think. The Party has lost faith in the ability of community leaders to shape minds and they have lost the courage to lead and stand for platforms that actually strike out against injustice and make a “ripple of hope.”