Our Voices

Kerry Kennedy: “We Need to Seize This Moment”

On June 5, 1968, U.S. presidential hopeful Robert F. Kennedy gave his final speech—about institutional and anti-Black violence—before he was assassinated.

Speaking to CNN’s Don Lemon, Kerry Kennedy said her father’s words on an issue “that has been in the country … for 401 years” are still relevant to those protesting today.

“We need to deincarcerate our jails. We need to address mass incarceration. We need to end cash bail. There’s so much that needs to be done in this country. To stop this anti-black violence that’s been here since the start.”

Kennedy said that while this is a time of “profound pain and sadness,” it was also a moment to harness.

“We have to harness the momentum of this moment and push forward. There’s going to be a time when protesters are going to get off the streets and people will go back to their lives,” she said. “So this is it. And for those of us who care about these issues, for those of us who want to stop the anti-Black violence in our country, we need to seize this moment. We need to seek out those local Black-led institutions, and support them. We need to educate ourselves.”