Our Voices

Baby Boomers and Race: ‘Move Beyond Reflection’

Re: “Confessions of a white baby boomer on race relations” [June 12, Opinion]:

Alex Alben should be applauded for his honesty and self-reflection following the death of yet another Black person at the hands of police.

As he points out, we can no longer brush off these repeated tragedies as “isolated incidents” but must see them for what they are: proof of systemic, anti-Black racism that must be pulled out, root and stem.

Yet Alben’s view that baby boomers like myself should be “simply taking a deep breath and learning more about critical issues” falls short of what our formative civil rights leaders demanded.

The respect my father, Robert Kennedy, earned from Black Americans in the 1960s came from his actions, establishing him as one of the few white political leaders to get proximate to their pain.

My father believed that racial justice would only be secured through a combination of change in legislation, finance and culture. So, boomers, here’s your task: Support local Black-led organizations, help protesters through mutual-aid networks and bail funds, attend city council meetings, stay engaged.

We must move beyond reflection and seize this moment, making meaningful progress in stopping anti-Black racism and violence for good.

Read the original article here.