I recently found a quote from Robert Kennedy, who delivered the news of Dr. King’s assassination to a group of African Americans in Indianapolis. He quoted from the poet Aeschylus in order to make sense of what was going on. I, too, would like to quote from the words of somebody who came before me, but I’d like to quote Kennedy himself. His words were:
“What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence and lawlessness, but is love and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice toward those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or whether they be black.”
The answer, in these times of great despair, is feeling and acting better toward the people who share this nation with us. It’s like Kennedy said: Division is bad, and compassion is good. Without this, we’re headed in a direction that will mean terrible things for everyone.